IAAF World Juniors off to rousing start

2014 World Juniors orchestra
The University of Oregon Brass & Percussion Ensemble made history during the opening ceremonies at the IAAF World Junior Championships at Hayward Field on Tuesday. They played an original musical score composed by conductor Brian McWhorter during the entire men’s 10,000-meter final. (TrackTown photo by Phil Johnson)

EUGENE, Ore. – A solo do-over in the women’s 100 meters for Ecuador’s supremely talented Angela Tenorio. An original musical score played throughout the entire 25-lap men’s 10,000-meter final. The seventh-best high jump mark in the history of the heptathlon.

And the usual loud and attentive Hayward Field crowd of 6,852 track and field fans mixed with a distinctive international flavor.

These were the highlights of Day One at the 15th edition of the IAAF World Junior Championships on Tuesday.

For the 18-year-old Tenorio, who became Ecuador’s first medalist at the IAAF World Youth Championships last year, round one of the 100 meters turned out to be an emotional roller-coaster ride. She was initially disqualified for a false start, but a protest was filed, and she was allowed to re-run the race by herself at the end of the meet.

Tenorio needed to run 11.77 seconds or faster to advance to today’s semifinals, a time she easily achieved with an 11.27 clocking, despite a long delay for a victory lap from 10,000m winner Joshua Cheptegie of Uganda. It was the second-fastest qualifying mark behind Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith at 11.18.

“It’s hard to run on your own, but I’m glad things worked out after my disappointment earlier,” Tenorio said. “During the time between my disqualification and this race I was sad, but it gave me time to regain my strength. I’m happy with my time and ready for what comes next.”

In what is believed to be a first for track and field in this country – and perhaps in the world – the University of Oregon Brass & Percussion Ensemble played an original composition by conductor Brian McWhorter entitled “Music for 10,000 meters,” during the entire race, picking up the tempo to support the crowd’s rhythmic clap each time the runners rounded the Bowerman Curve.

“You could definitely hear it,” said Team USA’s Brendan Shearn, who placed 15th overall out of 35 finishers. “It had a good rhythm and it helped take your mind off the pain a little bit. It kept me going through some of the tougher spots in the race. It was a completely new experience for me and I thought it was really cool. I hope it’s something that continues throughout the sport.”

Cheptegei won the race in 28:32.86, followed by Kenya’s tandem of Elvis Cheboi (28:35.20) and Nicholas Kosimbei (28:38.68).

The best performance of the day came from Great Britain’s Morgan Lake, who cleared 6 feet, 4 ¼ inches in the heptathlon high jump to break her own British junior record with a mark that would have won the open high jump competition in 12 of the past 14 World Junior meets.

“It was amazing to break the British junior record again,” Lake told British Athletics. “It’s a great feeling and I am really proud to have broken it.”

Lake enters Day Two of the heptathlon as the overall leader with 3,821 points. She has a 169-point lead over Nadine Visser (3,652) of The Netherlands and defending champion Yorgelis Rodriguez (3,561) of Cuba.

It was an up-and-down day for three UO track and field signees.

Ariana Washington advanced to the 100m semifinal by winning her heat at 11.67; Ashlee Moore stands 11th in the heptathlon with 3,331 points and Raevyn Rogers failed to make it out of the 800m heats after getting accidentally tripped from behind on the home straight. She finished in 2:08.01.

“I haven’t raced in several weeks, so it was good to get back in the groove,” said Washington, who joined Allyson Felix and Marion Jones as the only California high school females to sweep the 100m and 200m state titles for three successive years.

“I was trying to save gas because I have to run twice (Wednesday). My goal is to PR and hopefully get on the medal stand.”