New Balance GP Women — Goule Gets Aggressive

A 58.16 first half of the 800 helped propel Natoya Goule to the year’s first sub-2:00. (KEVIN MORRIS)

STATEN ISLAND, NEW YORK, February 06 — Natoya Goule spent the week replaying the Millrose 800 in her head. She and her coach were disappointed with her uncharacteristically timid tactics in that race, where she finished 2nd to rival Ajee’ Wilson. So when the Olympic finalist got to the New Balance Indoor GP she was determined to execute a more aggressive strategy.

“This time I felt like I was controlling it and I knew that if I was going to go under 2:00 today I had to get out,” she said after doing just that over 4 laps of the Ocean Breeze Athletics Complex oval. Once the pacer stepped off the track, Goule took command of the race and cruised to victory in 1:59.62. That’s the year’s first sub-2:00 and not far off her indoor PR of 1:59.13 and an encouraging sign for the Jamaican veteran.

Behind her, American Olivia Baker ran a strong penultimate lap to close the gap before taking 2nd in a PR 2:00.33 that gave her the yearly U.S. lead.

Goule’s countrywoman Danielle Williams won the 60H in 7.83, pulling away from Britany Anderson (7.88) and Gabrielle Cunningham (7.92) over the final barrier. “I was hoping to execute a much better race, it was very sloppy in terms of what I was working on in practice,” said Williams, the ’15 world outdoor champion. “A personal best in a sloppy race, I’ll take it. My rhythm just wasn’t there today.”

Another exciting 3-woman race came in the 3000. Following the steady rabbiting over the first 6 laps by Esther Guerrero (coming back after winning the 1500 in 4:11.87), Ethiopian Mekides Abebe didn’t let the pace lag. Only Canadian Gabriela Debues-Stafford and American Josette Norris went with her, and the trio ran single file until Debues-Stafford took the lead approaching the final curve. Thanks to a final 100 in 13.81, she crossed the line well clear in 8:33.92, a national record.

In an Instagram post, Debues-Stafford admitted to prerace nerves in her yearly opener. “I did puke a bit (OK more than a bit) before the race started,” she wrote. “But turns out anxiety is just in your head because sometimes you think you can’t do it, but then you close in a 13.8.”

Abebe, 4th in the Olympic steeplechase, took 2nd in 8:36.31, while Norris clocked 8:37.91, a PR by more than 20 seconds and good for No. 8 on the U.S. all-time indoor list.

On the shorter end of the spectrum, Mikiah Brisco won the 60 in 7.07, ahead of Jamaican Briana Williams (7.11). “My start was OK, I didn’t get out in first,” said Brisco, who wasn’t far off the 7.04 PR she set at altitude to win the ’20 USATF Indoor title. “But I was able to come up and work on my mechanics at the end. I’m going to watch the video, but it felt good and I came with the win, so that’s always exciting.”

Lorraine Ugen won the long jump at 22-0 ¼ (6.71) and Gabby Thomas closed the meet with a win in the 300, her 36.21 holding off Lynna Irby (36.42).


NEW BALANCE WOMEN

60: 1. Mikiah Brisco (US) 7.07 (WL, AL);

2. Briana Williams (Jam) 7.11; 3. Destiny Smith-Barnett (US) 7.14 =PR; 4. Kiara Parker (US) 7.19; 5. Khamica Bingham (Can) 7.24; 6. Cambrea Sturgis (US) 7.26; 7. Angie Annelus (US) 7.28 PR; 8. Morolake Akinosun (US) 7.32.

Heats: I–1. Williams 7.09 PR; 2. Smith-Barnett 7.14 =PR; 3. Sturgis 7.22; 4. Bingham 7.29; 5. Angie Annelus (US) 7.32. II–1. Brisco 7.14; 2. Parker 7.22; 3. Akinosun 7.30; 4. Tamara Clark (US) 7.35.

300: 1. Gabby Thomas (US) 36.21; 2. Lynna Irby (US) 36.42; 3. Kendall Ellis (US) 37.27; 4. Amy Hunt (GB) 37.61 PR.

400: 1. Jessica Beard (US) 52.88; 2. Kyra Constantine (Can) 52.96; 3. Roneisha McGregor (Jam) 53.01 PR.

800: 1. Natoya Goule (Jam) 1:59.62 (WL) (58.16/61.46); 2. Olivia Baker (US) 2:00.33 PR (AL) (59.51/60.82);

3. Isabelle Boffey (GB) 2:01.37 PR; 4. Sammy Watson (US) 2:02.57; 5. Sadi Henderson (US) 2:02.60; 6. Brenna Detra (US) 2:05.90;… rabbit—Olga Kosichenko (US) (57.78.

1500: 1. Esther Guerrero (Spa) 4:11.87; 2. Heather MacLean (US) 4:12.29; 3. Nikki Hiltz (US) 4:12.32; 4. Dani Jones (US) 4:12.44; 5. Cory McGee (US) 4:13.96; 6. Erin Wallace (GB) 4:13.96 PR; 7. Sarah Lancaster (US) 4:15.13 PR; 8. Georgie Hartigan (Ire) 4:15.42; 9. Danae Rivers (US) 4:17.08; 10. Síofra Cléirigh Büttner (Ire) 4:18.01; 11. Taryn Rawlings (US) 4:18.38.

3000: 1. Gabriela DeBues-Stafford (Can) 8:33.92 NR; 2. Mekides Abebe (Eth) 8:36.31 PR;

3. Josette Norris (US) 8:37.91 PR (8, 9 A);

4. Julie-Anne Staehli (Can) 8:43.55 PR; 5. Amy-Eloise Markovc (GB) 8:44.15 PR; 6. Marta Pérez (Spa) 8:44.40 PR; 7. Annie Rodenfels (US) 8:46.07 PR; 8. Katie Izzo (US) 8:46.54 PR; 9. Jenny Nesbitt (GB) 8:48.48; 10. Lea Meyer (Ger) 8:55.30 PR;… rabbit—Guerrero.

60H: 1. Danielle Williams (Jam) 7.83 PR; 2. Britany Anderson (Jam) 7.88 PR; 3. Gabbi Cunningham (US) 7.92; 4. Christina Clemons (US) 8.06; 5. Sarah Lavin (Ire) 8.10; 6. Michelle Harrison (Can) 8.32; 7. Kendell Williams (US) 8.35.

Field Event

LJ: 1. Lorraine Ugen (GB) 22-¼ (6.71); 2. Quanesha Burks (US) 21-10 (6.65); 3. Kendell Williams (US) 21-3¼ (6.48); 4. Christabel Nettey (Can) 20-10½ (6.36); 5. Jazmin Sawyers (GB) 20-9¾ (6.34); 6. Kate Hall (US) 20-4½ (6.21); 7. Yanis David (Fra) 20-3 (6.17). ◻︎

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