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JIS News

World and Olympic sprint champion Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica will be among the headliners at the 2009 Reebok Grand Prix scheduled for May 30 at Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island, New York City, USA.
Other top athletes such as American sprinter Tyson Gay; Ethiopian distance runner Gebre-egziabher Gebremariam; and reigning three-time World Champion heptathlete Carolina Kluft of Sweden, will also compete in the event, organisers recently announced.
The meet, which will get underway at 3:00 p.m., is the third stop in the United States Track and Field Visa Championship Series.
Campbell-Brown, 26, the reigning 100 metres World Champion, will attempt to win her third straight Reebok Grand Prix title in the event. A five-time Olympic medalist, she captured gold in the 200 metres at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, becoming only the second woman in Olympic Games history to successfully defend her title.
The 26-year old Gay was a three-time World Champion in the 100 metres, 200 metres and 4×100 metres relay in 2007, and is the current American record holder in the 100 meters. For his outstanding performances in 2007, Gay was named Male Athlete of the Year by the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF).
Just two weeks ago, Gebremariam, 23, won the IAAF World Cross Country Championship in Jordan. The Ethiopian distance champion previously won World Cross Country individual medals in 2002, 2003 and 2004. With his individual gold and team silver medals, Gebremariam has now earned 15 medals at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, second only to compatriot Kenenisa Bekele.
Sweden’s Kluft, 26, who will compete in the long jump, is considered one of the world’s greatest female athletes. Kluft won the Olympic heptathlon in 2004 and is the reigning three-time world and double European heptathlon champion.
The Reebok Grand Prix, now in its fifth year, is one of America’s premier outdoor track and field invitational meets. It features Olympic stars, top high school athletes and a Fastest Kid in New York competition for seven and eight-year olds.
Head of IrieJam Media Group, Louis Grant, said that the programme remains the same as last year and will include sprints, hurdles, middle-distance races, pole vault and invitational high school races.
He noted that interest from fans in the New York area has prompted organisers to increase seating at track level.
It was at a Reebok meet in June 2008, where Usain Bolt became the world’s fastest man, with a blistering 9.72 seconds in the 100 metres. He subsequently lowered the mark to 9.69 seconds at the Beijing Olympics.