Brown Comes Up Short In World 800m Prelims

Aug. 20, 2009

BERLIN - Former Husky Ryan Brown fell short in today's preliminary 800-meter heat at the World Track & Field Championships at the 1936 Olympic Stadium in Germany.

Brown was making his first ever World Championship appearance and ran out of the third heat. Early in the second lap, Brown was dealt an unlucky blow when Germany's Robin Schembera fell to the track in front of him, and Brown had to leap over Schembera, losing ground on the lead pack. He caught back up with the lead group but may have expended a bit too much energy in the process. He wound up fifth in his heat in 1:46.92. The USATF was protesting the result due to the obstruction.

'The race was faster than I expected it to be off the first 200,' said Brown. 'At first I was worried, but then I thought it was good. There are time qualifiers, too. I kind of got caught in the back. A guy fell at about 450, and that's when the race started to pick up. I got a little bit detached from the leaders. I had to catch up through 600 and catch up through 700.'

Still Brown was more than happy with the overall experience even if the protest is not upheld.

'It feels good. I ran sub-1:47,' said Brown. 'It's my first time here and I wanted to get some experience. If I make it through to the next round, it's even more bonus. It's been a wonderful experience. I love this. This is what track is all about. I want to come back every time I can.'

Another Husky alum unfortunately saw his World Championships end before it began, as defending gold medalist Brad Walker had to withdraw from the pole vault competition with an injury suffered a few weeks back.

The USATF put out the following statement Thursday morning:

'Defending world champion Brad Walker on Thursday morning withdrew from men's pole vault competition due to injuries sustained July 28 at the Herculis meet in Monaco. While competing in Monaco, Walker landed partly off the mat on one of his attempts, causing his hips to hit the ground. The result was trauma to his public symphis joint.

According to Walker's agent, Peter Stubbs, 'Every time he runs, it causes movement of the joint and extreme pain. To avoid a potentially career-ending injury, Brad has made the very difficult decision to withdraw.'

Aretha Thurmond is the final remaining Husky competing at World's. She throws in the discus final on Friday.

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