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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, January 29, 2010

Track: Bernard Lagat wins 8th Wanamaker Mile at Millrose


By RACHEL COHEN
AP Sports Writer

NEW YORK Bernard Lagat won the Wanamaker Mile on Friday night for the eighth time, breaking Irish great Eamonn Coghlan's Millrose Games record.

Lagat clocked 3 minutes, 56.34 seconds at Madison Square Garden in the 103rd edition of the meet. The American beat reigning Olympic champ Asbel Kiprop of Kenya by less than 2 seconds.

The Kenyan-born Lagat has won five Olympic and world championship medals in the 1,500 meters and two more in the 5,000.

With Coghlan in attendance, the 35-year-old Lagat was content to hang behind Kiprop for nearly the entire race, making his move with exactly one lap to go.

Kiprop, who finished second in Beijing but moved up to gold when Rashid Ramzi was caught doping, was making his indoor debut.

American Lisa Barber returned to the track for the first time in 11 months and showed she's fully healed from a serious Achilles' tendon injury, beating a strong field in the 60 meters.

Barber, the 2006 world indoor champion, edged two-time Olympic 200-meter gold medalist Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica.

Barber realized almost immediately after winning at the U.S. indoor championships March 1 that something was very wrong. She'd been hampered by a nagging Achilles' problem, and now she learned she had a partial tear. Barber knew of athletes in many sports who never came back from Achilles' injuries.

"Sometimes you don't get to get that back," she said.

Barber didn't run for seven months as she went through extensive rehab. It didn't seem fun at the time, but now as she looks back she realizes the break was a good experience. She got to spend Fourth of July with her family for the first time in years and caught up on TV shows.

"Now I enjoy track more," she said.

Barber had battled injuries before, but "never like that to where I'm questioning, 'Is this it? Is it over?'" she said.

It's definitely not over. She got to make her comeback in front of her family, not far from her hometown of Montclair, N.J. Barber and Campbell-Brown both posted times of 7.24 seconds.

Two-time Olympic silver medalist Terrence Trammell won the men's 60-meter hurdles, and 2008 bronze medalist Priscilla Lopes-Schliep of Canada won the women's race.

Reigning world champ Christian Cantwell won the shot put with a throw of 72 feet, inch.

American Ivory Williams won the men's 60 in 6.59 seconds.

Former Oilers and Raiders defensive back Anthony Dorsett won the inaugural Super 60 race, which featured NFL players with speedy track backgrounds. His time of 7.01 seconds beat Phillip Buchanon, Willie Gault, Tim Dwight and Ryan LaCasse.