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Randall's Island Park

The Daily Plant : Wednesday, June 11, 2008

New 100-Meter World Record Set At Icahn Stadium

Track and Field event at Icahn Stadium
Photo by Tom Paliswiat

Icahn Stadium, one of only two qualifying tracks in the United States for the Olympic trials, took its place in history on Saturday, May 31, as Jamaica’s Usain Bolt lived up to his name, setting the new world record for the 100-meter dash with a lightning fast time of 9.72 seconds. The world record was set at the Reebok Grand Prix at Icahn Stadium, located on Manhattan’s Randall’s Island.

“Usain Bolt’s new world record confirms Icahn Stadium’s reputation as a world class facility with a superb track,” said Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “Paul Koech’s all-comers record in the 3,000-meter steeplechase also helps cement the track’s prestige. Best of all, this track is used every day for runners at all levels, from children’s track & field programs run by the Randall’s Island Sports Foundation to high school and college students to world class athletes.”

Icahn Stadium was the first International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) certified championship-quality track and field facility in the United States for local, national and international outdoor competition. The track features the Mondo Super-X surface running track and to date, only 64 outdoor track & field facilities worldwide have obtained this certification. Mondo has been the official supplier of Olympic athletic facilities since 1976.

“Four years ago, we chose Icahn Stadium to host the Reebok Grand Prix, and it has proven to be a great decision,” said Mark Wetmore, meet director and president of Global Athletics & Marketing. “With two world records – first at 3,000 meters and now at 100 meters – the track is obviously a fast one at both ends of the spectrum.”

The previous world record for the 100-meter race was held by fellow Jamaican Asafa Powell, who set the record last September in Italy. Americans Tyson Gay and Darvis Patton finished in second and third place behind Bolt with times of 9.85 and 10.07, respectively. In the 3,000-meter steeplechase, Kenyan Steeplechaser Paul Koech ran an 8:01.85, defeating the American all-comers record of 8:04.51. In the Women’s 100-meter dash, Veronica Campbell-Brown ran the fastest time in the world this year in 10.91 seconds.

Other prestigious events at Icahn Stadium include the Empire State Games Trials and the AAU Regional Junior Olympic Championships. Icahn Stadium, which opened in April 2005, is located along Randall’s Island’s northwestern shoreline, visible from the East Side of Manhattan and the FDR Drive. Modern locker rooms, showers and meeting rooms have been constructed within the seating complex, along with facilities geared toward RISF’s youth programs.

Randall’s Island Sports Foundation, founded in 1992, is a public-private partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation that seeks to realize the unique potential of 480 waterfront parkland acres anchoring Manhattan, the Bronx and Queens. In addition to acting as stewards of the Park, RISF strives to empower under-resourced children through sports and recreation with an investment of over $300 million over the next five years in world class facilities, playing fields and programming.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

“I loved the feeling of freedom in running,
the fresh air, the feeling that the only person I'm competing with is me.”

Wilma Rudolph
(1940 - 1994)

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