Olympics 2012: 5 Track and Field Athletes Ready to Break Out
The 2012 London Olympics are quickly approaching, and track and field athletes are training hard with one thing in mind: winning the gold medal.
There is potential for some upsets, but in the sprint events there is a solid core of people who will likely medal; we just don't know exactly where yet.
Here are the top five track and field athletes ready to break out for the 2012 London Olympic Games.
1. Carmelita Jeter
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Carmelita Jeter is the world’s fastest woman, with the hopes of keeping that title after the 2012 Olympics conclude.
Jeter will be running the 100 meter and 200 meter dashes in the Olympic trials in Eugene, Oregon, which should be a walk in the park for her.
The 2011 IAAF 100m champion’s personal record of 10.64 puts her second only to Florence Griffith-Joyner (10.49) for the fastest women's 100m sprint of all time.
She will have some competition from Allyson Felix in the 200m and Veronica Campbell-Brown in the 100m and 200m.
With a great work ethic and determination, she should win the 100m, but the 200m will be a battle of who wants it more.
2. Allyson Felix
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Ten-time world champion and three-time Olympic medalist Allyson Felix is track and field royalty.
With a great performance at the 2011 IAAF World Championships she is poised to win the 200m in London, but the 400m might be a challenge.
The last athletes to win both races at the same Olympics were the USA's Michael Johnson and France's Marie-Jose Perec, both of whom accomplished the feat in 1996 at Atlanta.
With the dress rehearsal at the IAAF, Felix had a year to try to perfect the double.
And don’t forget she is anchoring the women’s 4x100m and 4x400m relays.
Felix will have some stiff competition, but in the end she will truly be battling herself.
If anyone can win four gold medals, it’s Felix.
3. Veronica Campbell-Brown
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Two-time 200m Olympic champion Veronica Campbell-Brown has been on the scene for a number of years and there are no signs that she is slowing down.
She also won the women’s 200m at the 2011 IAAF World Championships. With pressure from Carmelita Jeter in the 100m and Allyson Felix in the 200m, Campbell-Brown is considered an underdog.
However, if Campbell-Brown focuses on her races, she just might upset in one of—if not both—the 100m and 200m this summer.
4. Usain Bolt
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Double Olympic champion and world record holder Usain Bolt of Jamaica took the world by storm in August 2008 by shattering the men's 100m Olympic record of 9.84 with his 9.69.
The crazy thing is that he slowed up at the finish line, so we don’t really know how fast he might have been in that race. Bolt later re-broke the world record in the 100m by running a 9.59 at the IAAF World Championships in 2009.
Unfortunately, the rest of the field might be vying for second place unless Bolt becomes human again.
Aside from Bolt, the next closest competitors are Richard Johnson and Walter Dix.
If Bolt is an improved version of what we saw at the IAAF World Championships, then we might see a new world record in the 100m and 200m.
5. Walter Dix
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The 2011 IAAF silver medalist and 2008 Olympic bronze medalist in both the 100m and 200m, Walter Dix, has a lot to prove.
If he had been born a few years earlier he might have some gold medals in his collection, but it is never too late. The 200m is his stronger event and he too has been known to slow down at the finish line.
With his experience in running in championship events and appearing not to be a threat, Dix might actually surprise some people.