Powell Unfazed By Rain, Sanchez Succumbs To Pain at World Track & Field Championships

Aug. 9, 2005

USC's 2005 NCAA women's 100m hurdles champion Virginia Powell advanced to the semi-finals tomorrow (Aug. 10), while former Trojan Felix Sanchez pulled up due to injury in the men's 400m hurdles finals today at the World Track and Field Championships in Helsinki, Finland. The competition was marred by heavy rain and wind, in what was being called 'one of the heaviest torrential downpours witnessed in an international athletic event.'

After a two-hour rain delay, Powell ran a time of 12.91 in her heat to advance to the semi-finals. She bettered her school record and tied the Pac-10 record with a time of 12:61 in the 100m hurdles at the USA Track and Field Championships on June 26. As a junior, Powell won both the 2005 NCAA indoor and outdoor titles in the high hurdles.

Sanchez, who was hobbled in his first two 400m hurdles races yet advanced to the finals, pulled up before reaching the second hurdle in today's finals due to a sore heel. Sanchez, who attended USC in 1999 and 2000, was the number one ranked 400m hurdler the last four years (2001-04) and was attempting to win the 400m hurdles at the Worlds for the third straight year.

Allen Simms, the USC record-holder in the triple jump with a mark of 56-4 set on April 26, 2003, will jump tomorrow (Aug. 10) in the men's triple jump qualifying round. He completed his senior season in 2005 with a jump of 55-7 at the NCAA Championships to finish second.

Allyson Felix will compete in the women's 200m qualifying race tomorrow. She won the silver medal in the 200m at the 2004 Olympics in Sydney, Australia. Felix turned professional and does not compete for the Trojans, but will be starting her junior year at USC. Allyson's brother, Wes, just completed his senior season at USC and finished second at the 2005 NCAA Track and Field Championships in the 100m dash.

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