Jones Has Ambitious Plans for 400 Meters
Marion Jones, Track & Field News magazine’s 1997 women’s athlete of the year, will take aim at one of the oldest American records in the Mt. San Antonio College Relays in Walnut on Sunday.
Jones, the 1997 world champion in the 100 meters, will make a rare appearance in the 400 at Mt. SAC, but that won’t prevent her from shooting for the U.S. record of 48.83 seconds that Valerie Brisco-Hooks set in winning the 1984 Olympic gold medal.
Jones, a 1997 graduate of North Carolina and a ’93 graduate of Thousand Oaks High, posted personal bests of 10.76 in the 100 and 21.76 in the 200 last year while earning No. 1 rankings in both events.
She set her career best of 52.91 in the 400 way back in 1991 when she was a sophomore at Oxnard Rio Mesa High. That mark was part of a superb triple in which Jones clocked 11.30 in the 100 and 23.06 in the 200 in the Southern Section 3-A Division championships.
Jones, 22, will be one of five world or Olympic champions entered in Mt. SAC’s international day of champions competition, which starts at noon Sunday.
Maurice Greene and John Godina of the United States, Ato Boldon of Trinidad and Marie-Jose Perec of France are the others.
Greene, the 1997 world champion in the 100 meters, will run the 200 and a leg on HSI’s high-powered 400-meter relay team that hopes to break the 38-second barrier.
Godina, the 1995 and ’97 world champion in the shotput, will compete in that event and in the discus.
Boldon, the 1997 world champion in the 200, will run the 100 and a leg on HSI’s 400 relay team.
Perec, the 1996 Olympic champion in the women’s 200 and 400, is entered in the 100 and 200.
Mebrahtom Keflezighi of UCLA and Angela Williams of Chino High are two of the top entrants in other portions of the meet, which runs today through Sunday.
Keflezighi, who won four NCAA titles in various distance races last year, will run in the 5,000 as part of the international distance carnival, which starts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Williams, Track & Field News’ 1997 female high school athlete of the year, will run in the 100 and 200 during the high school competition, which starts at 8 a.m. Saturday.
Today’s events will start with the middle schools competition at 9 a.m., followed by the college-university division at 4:30 p.m. and the open distance carnival at 7.