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Posted: July 29, 2009  : Add to Mixx! Subscribe to stories like this

Athletics: News & Notes, Volume 9, Number 40

Demus posts personal best in Monaco

2009 U.S. women's 400 hurdles champion and 2005 World Outdoor Championships silver medalist Lashinda Demus posted the fourth-fastest time ever in her specialty Tuesday at the Herculis IAAF Super Grand Prix in Monaco.

Demus, who ran the previous fastest time in the world this season with her July 25 win in London in 53.65 seconds, blistered the track today in 52.63 seconds, the fastest time in the world since Russia's Yuliya Pechenkina set the world record of 52.34 in 2003. Demus currently owns the four-fastest times in the world this year.

Demus is now third on the all-time U.S. list, trailing only Kim Batten (52.61) and Tonja Buford-Bailey (52.62) from their respective gold and silver medal winning performances at the 1995 World Outdoor Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Vessey wins, betters World Champs "A" standard

Former Cal Poly SLO standout Maggie Vessey had the performance of her life in winning the women's 800 meters convincingly in the fastest time in the world this year of 1 minute 57.84 seconds. Her performance is a new personal best by more than two seconds, and it placed her on the Team USA roster for the 2009 World Outdoor Championships in Berlin by easily bettering the 'A' qualifying standard of 2:00.00. Vessey's time is the fastest by an American since Jearl Miles-Clark topped the U.S. list in 2004 with her clocking of 1:57.27. 2009 European Indoor champion Mariya Savinova of Russia was the runner-up in 1:58.39.

Elsewhere, 2008 Olympic gold medalist and reigning USA Outdoor champion LaShawn Merritt was victorious in the men's 400 meters in 44.73 seconds, with 2008 Olympic bronze medalist David Neville the runner-up in 45.26.

In the men's 800 meters, two-time USA Outdoor champion Nick Symmonds finished third in 1 minute 43.83 seconds. Symmonds' performance is the fastest mark by an American this year and shattered his previous personal best of 1:44.10 set in winning the 2008 Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore.

In men's hurdles action, Olympic champion and world record holder Dayron Robles of Cuba won the 110m hurdles in 13.06 seconds, with American Joel Brown the runner-up in 13.34. 2008 Olympic Games fifth-place finisher LJ Van Zyl of South Africa was victorious in the 400m hurdles in 47.94 seconds, with Beijing Olympic bronze medalist Bershawn Jackson the runner-up in a season-best 47.98. Also finishing as a runner-up in Monaco was 2008 Olympian in the 100 meters Darvis Patton (10.08 seconds) and American record holder Brad Walker, who had a seasonal best pole vault clearance of 5.80 meters/19 feet 0.25 inches.

For more information on the 2009 Herculis in Monaco, including the complete results, visit:

About USA Track & Field
USA Track & Field (USATF) is the National Governing Body for track and field, long-distance running and race walking in the United States. USATF encompasses the world's oldest organized sports, some of the most-watched events of Olympic broadcasts, the #1 high school and junior high school participatory sport and more than 30 million adult runners in the United States.

For more information on USATF, visit

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