Pan-Am Games — A Big Meet For Kara Winger

She was only 2nd at USATF, but Kara Winger bounced back with a sterling series that saw all 6 of her throws past 200-feet. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

LIMA, PERU—Kara Winger was in a good place when she threw an opening 207-8 (63.31) to take the javelin lead in the Pan-Am Games. “I really focused on trying to relax before USAs and I didn’t have time to do that,” she said. “But the 2 weeks in between were perfect. I’ve been putting tons and tons of pressure on myself, so [coach] Dana [Lyon] and I talked in practice about just trying to compete, trying to be fierce and trying to use emotions in a positive way instead of letting them get me really even tighter in the body and my shoulders.”

It also turned out to be beneficial that Winger was rooming with friend and USATF champion Ariana Ince. “It was super helpful to be with somebody that I was completely comfortable with. That kind of set the stage… The plan was to start strong.” Check.

In round 2, Winger’s turn came during a lull in the action at the Estadio Nacional del Perú. She looked across the track and saw her own face on the stadium scoreboard. “I wasn’t going to start the clap, but then I popped up on that big screen. I saw myself and nothing else was going on in the stadium. So I thought, ‘Round 1 went well, why not involve these fans who are here?’ So that’s when I started the little clap. That’s just a little boost of energy. And then the challenge is to stay focused on the technique that worked for you in round 1 and trust that.”

She trusted, and the javelin arched out over the field piercing the ground at 213-0 (64.92)—the fifth-longest throw in U.S. history and one that was more than long enough to win gold: “Tiny technical changes made a world of difference in practice between USAs and Pan-Ams. Just to have that tiny boost of confidence from those practices going into round 1, and have round 1 go the way it did, and then stay focused on the competition was really fun.”

Winger finished out a particularly strong series, saying, “I really wanted to prove to myself that those things were repeatable. I was instantly emotional about that. It’s just been really challenging to not feel like I had a good grasp on how to even throw the javelin this season. So to hit the Olympic qualifying mark and the fifth-best throw of my career, it was such a relief. I definitely felt like I had more in the tank and I’m really excited about that for the rest of the season.”

Looking ahead, she is focused on what she needs to do to challenge at Worlds. “I want to be up there with them. There’s more work to do. Winning Pan-Ams is awesome, but I want to keep the hard lessons that I learned in mind. I need to keep my eyes on the bigger prize.” She topped Canada’s Liz Gleagle (207-8/63.30) and Ince took the bronze at 204-5 (62.32).

Winger’s was one of 7 gold medals won by Team USA out of a total haul of 33. Mike Rodgers took the 100 in 10.09—the only American win in the sprints, though impressive high school junior Justin Robinson grabbed bronze with his 45.07—the No. 7 prep time ever—in the 400. Nikki Hiltz stormed to the 1500 gold in 4:07.14, finishing ahead of Jamaica’s Aisha Praught Leer (4:08.26) and U.S. teammate Alexa Efraimson (4:08.63). “Being the one to stop the clock never gets old,” tweeted Hiltz.

On the final day of stadium events, Chris Nilsen vaulted 18-10¾ (5.76) on his third try to top Brazil’s Augusto Dutra (18-8¾/5.71). Omar Craddock came from behind to win the triple jump with his fifth-round 57-2 (17.42). Ending up with silver was Cuba’s 18-year-old Jordan Diaz, whose 57-¼ (17.38) was a World Junior leader. Gwen Berry captured the hammer at 244-10 (74.62), with teammate Brooke Anderson winning silver with a 233-2 (71.07). (Continued below)

Finally, the women’s 4×4 of Lynna Irby, Jaide Stepter, Anna Cockrell and Courtney Okolo put together a 3:26.46 to top Canada’s 3:27.61.

One of the meet’s most notable marks came from Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas in the triple jump, bounding a national record 49-7 (15.11) to take over the yearly world lead.


PAN-AM GAMES MEN’S MEDALISTS

Lima, Peru, July 27; August 04, 06–11 (all Americans are listed)

(7/27—Mar; 8/4—20W; 8/6—5K, DT; 8/7—100, LJ, SP; 8/8—400, 1500, 400H, HT; 8/9—200, 10K, 4×1, HJ; 8/10—800, St, 110H, 4×4, PV, TJ, JT)

100(-0.5): 1. Mike Rodgers (US) 10.09; 2. Paulo André de Oliveira (Bra) 10.16; 3. Cejhae Greene (Ant) 10.23;… 6. Cravon Gillespie (US) 10.38.

200(-1.0): 1. Alex Quiñónez (Ecu) 20.27; 2. Jereem Richards (Tri) 20.38; 3. Yancarlos Martinez (DR) 20.44. Heats: III(-0.9)–6. Andrew Hudson (US) 42.96.

400: 1. Anthony Zambrano (Col) 44.83; 2. Demish Gaye (Jam) 44.94;

3. Justin Robinson (US) 45.07 (x, 7 HS);

4. Wil London (US) 45.22.

800: 1. Marco Arop (Can) 1:44.25 PR; 2. Wesley Vázquez (PR) 1:44.48; 3. Ryan Sanchez (PR) 1:45.19; 4. Bryce Hoppel (US) 1:47.48.

1500: 1. Carlos Villarreal (Mex) 3:39.93; 2. Johnny Gregorek (US) 3:40.42; 3. William Paulson (Can) 3:41.15.

St: 1. Altobelli da Silva (Bra) 8:30.73; 2. Carlos Andrés San Martín (Col) 8:32.24 PR; 3. Mario Bazán (Per) 8:32.34; 4. Benard Keter (US) 8:32.76; 5. Travis Mahoney (US) 8:34.77.

5000: 1. Fernando Daniel Martinez (Mex) 13:53.87 PR; 2. Altobelli da Silva (Bra) 13:54.42; 3. Carlos Díaz (Chl) 13:54.43;… 8. Josef Tessema (US) 14:00.19;… 10. Tyler Day (US) 14:01.13.

10,000: 1. Éderson Pereira (Bra) 28:27.47 PR; 2. Reid Buchanan (US) 28:28.41; 3. Lawi Lalang (US) 28:31.75.

110H(1.8): 1. Shane Brathwaite (Bar) 13.31; 2. Freddie Crittenden (US) 13.32; 3. Eduardo Santos (Bra) 13.48;… dnf—Jarret Eaton (US).

400H: 1. Alison Brendom Alves Dos Santos (Bra) 48.45 PR (WJL) (3, 5 WJ);

2. Amere Lattin (US) 48.98; 3. Kemar Mowatt (Jam) 49.09;… 6. Norman Grimes (US) 49.65.

Mar: 1. Christian Pacheco (Per) 2:09:31 PR; 2. Jose Santana Marin (Mex) 2:10:54 PR; 3. Juan Pacheco (Mex) 2:12:10; 4. Augustus Maiyo (US) 2:12:25 PR;… 14. Aaron Braun (US) 2:21:55.

20W: 1. Brian Pintado (Ecu) 1:21:51; 2. Caio Bonfim (Bra) 1:21:57; 3. José Alejandro Barrondo (Gua) 1:21:57.

50W: 1. Claudio Villanueva (Ecu) 3:50:01; 2. Horacio Nava (Mex) 3:51:45; 3. Diego Pinzon (Col) 3:53:49;… 5. Matthew Forgues (US) 4:19:28;… dnf—Nick Christie (US).

4 x 100: 1. Brazil 38.27 (do Nascimento, Vides, Derick, de Oliveira); 2. Trinidad 38.46 (Elcock, Bledman, Hislop, Greaux); 3. United States 38.79 (Eaton, Gillespie, Robinson, Rodgers).

4 x 400: 1. Colombia 3:01.41 (Perlaza, Palomeque, Solís, Zambrano); 2. United States 3:01.72 (Harris, Cherry, Robinson, London); 3. Trinidad 3:02.25 (St. Hillare, Richards, Lendore, Cedenio).

Field Events

HJ: 1. Luis Zayas (Cub) 7-6½ (2.30) PR; 2. Michael Mason (Can) 7-5¾ (2.28); 3. Roberto Vilches (Mex) 7-5 (2.26);… 5. Keenon Laine (US) 7-4¼ (2.24); 6. Jeron Robinson (US) 7-3 (2.21).

PV: 1. Chris Nilsen (US) 18-10¾ (5.76); 2. Augusto Dutra (Bra) 18-8¾ (5.71); 3. Clayton Fritsch (US) 18-4¾ (5.61).

LJ: 1. Juan Miguel Echevarría (Cub) 27-1¾ (8.27); 2. Tajay Gayle (Jam) 26-9¾ (8.17); 3. Emiliano Lasa (Uru) 25-10 (7.87);… 6. Trumaine Jefferson (US) 25-1¾ (7.66).

TJ: 1. Omar Craddock (US) 57-2 (17.42) (56-2½, 56-4¾, 55-8½, p, 57-2, f) (17.13, 17.19, 16.98, p, 17.42, f);

2. Jordan Díaz (Cub) 57-¼ (17.38) (WJL) (x, 6 WJ) (55-0, 56-4¾, 55-10½, 57-¼, f, 56-4½) (16.76, 17.19, 17.03, 17.38, f, 17.18);

3. Andy Díaz (Cub) 55-2¾ (16.83);… 6. Chris Carter (US) 53-5½ (16.29).

SP: 1. Darlan Romani (Bra) 72-5 (22.07) (68-3¼, 68-7¾, 69-6¼, 69-5¼, 70-8, 72-5) (20.81, 20.92, 21.19, 21.16, 21.54, 22.07); 2. Jordan Geist (US) 67-9¾ (20.67); 3. Uziel Muñoz (Mex) 67-5½ (20.56);… 9. Josh Awotunde (US) 62-5¾ (19.04).

DT: 1. Fedrick Dacres (Jam) 222-0 (67.68) (217-0, 222-0, f, 213-4, 213-6, f) (66.14, 67.68, f, 65.02, 65.07, f); 2. Traves Smikle (Jam) 213-4 (65.02); 3. Reggie Jagers (US) 211-6 (64.48);… 3f—Brian Williams (US).

HT: 1. Gabriel Enrique Kehr (Chl) 246-0 (74.98); 2. Humberto Mansilla (Chl) 244-0 (74.38); 3. Sean Donnelly (US) 243-6 (74.23);… 8. Rudy Winkler (US) 235-8 (71.84).

JT: 1. Anderson Peters (Grn) 286-5 (87.31) NR (286-5, 268-4, 258-11, 281-10, 266-5, f) (87.31, 81.78, 78.92, 85.90, 81.21, f); 2. Keshorn Walcott (Tri) 274-1 (83.55); 3. Albert Reynolds (StL) 269-8 (82.19) NR; 4. Michael Shuey (US) 264-10 (80.72);… 10. Curtis Thompson (US) 214-6 (65.39).

Dec(8/6-7): 1. Damian Warner (Can) 8513 (10.32, 25-4¾/7.74, 49-3/15.01, 6-5½/1.97, 47.77, 13.68, 160-2/48.82, 14-5¼/4.40, 195-2/59.48, 4:38.31); 2. Lindon Victor (Grn) 8240; 3. Pierce LePage (Can) 8161;… 9. Nathan Hite (US) 7389.

PAN-AM WOMEN’S MEDALISTS

(7/27—Mar; 8/4—20W; 8/6—800h, 10K, LJ, DT; 8/7—100, 800; 8/8—200h, 400, 100H, 400H, HJ, PV; 8/9—200, 1500, 5K, 4×1, TJ, SP, JT; 8/10—St, 4×4, HT)

100(-0.6): 1. Elaine Thompson (Jam) 11.18; 2. Michelle-Lee Ahye (Tri) 11.27; 3. Vitoria Cristina Rosa (Bra) 11.30;… 5. Twanisha Terry (US) 11.37.

200(-0.1): 1. Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (Jam) 22.43; 2. Rosa 22.62 PR; 3. Tynia Gaither (Bah) 22.76. Heats: I(-1.0)–6. Lynna Irby (US) 23.93.

400: 1. Shericka Jackson (Jam) 50.73; 2. Paola Morán (Mex) 51.02 PR; 3. Courtney Okolo (US) 51.22;… dq—Jaide Stepter (US).

800: 1. Natoya Goule (Jam) 2:01.26; 2. Rose M. Almanza (Cub) 2:01.64; 3. Déborah Rodríguez (Uru) 2:01.66. Heats: II–7. Athing Mu (US) 2:07.30.

1500: 1. Nikki Hiltz (US) 4:07.14; 2. Aisha Praught Leer (Jam) 4:08.26; 3. Alexa Efraimson (US) 4:08.63;.

St: 1. Geneviève Lalonde (Can) 9:41.45; 2. Marisa Howard (US) 9:43.78; 3. Belén Casetta (Arg) 9:44.46.

5000: 1. Laura Galván (Mex) 15:35.47; 2. Jessica O’Connell (Can) 15:36.08; 3. Kim Conley (US) 15:36.95;… 6. Lauren Paquette (US) 15:45.93.

10,000: 1. Natasha Wodak (Can) 31:55.17; 2. Risper Gesabwa (Mex) 31:59.00 PR; 3. Rachel Cliff (Can) 32:13.34; 4. Elaina Tabb (US) 32:24.37;… 6. Sarah Pagano (US) 32:48.04.

100H(0.1): 1. Andrea Carolina Vargas (CR) 12.82 NR; 2. Chanel Brissett (US) 12.99; 3. Megan Tapper (Jam) 13.01;… 7. Sharika Nelvis (US) 13.23.

400H: 1. Sage Watson (Can) 55.16; 2. Anna Cockrell (US) 55.50; 3. Rushell Clayton (Jam) 55.53.

Mar: 1. Gladys Tejeda (Per) 2:30:55; 2. Bethany Sachtleben (US) 2:31:20 PR; 3. Angie Orjuela (Col) 2:32:27 PR;… 5. Sam Roecker (US) 2:32:49 PR; 6. Valdilene Silva (Bra) 2:34:20; 7. Margarita Hernández (Mex) 2:35:06; 8. Andreia Hessel (Bra) 2:35:40.

20W: 1. Sandra Arenas (Col) 1:28:03 NR; 2. Kimberley García (Per) 1:29:00; 3. Erica de Sena (Bra) 1:30:34;… 12. Robyn Stevens (US) 1:40:29;… dq—Miranda Melville (US).

50W: 1. Johana Ordóñez (Ecu) 4:11:12; 2. Mirna Ortiz (Gua) 4:15:21; 3. Paola Perez (Ecu) 4:16:54… 9. Stephanie Casey (US) 4:50:31;… dnf—Katie Burnett (US).

4 x 100: 1. Brazil 43.04 (Fidelis, Rosa, Martins, Santos); 2. Canada 43.37 (Bingham, Emmanuel, Best, Buchanan); 3. United States 43.39 (Brissett, Terry, Collins, Irby).

4 x 400: 1. United States 3:26.46 (Irby, Stepter, Cockrell, Okolo); 2. Canada 3:27.01 (McDonald, Stiverne, Constantine, Watson); 3. Jamaica 3:27.61 (McPherson, James, Goule, McGregor).

Field Events

HJ: 1. Levern Spencer (StL) 6-1½ (1.87); 2. Priscilla Frederick (Ant) 6-1½; 3. Kimberly Williamson (Jam) 6-½ (1.84);… 8. Nicole Greene (US) 5-10½ (1.80);… 10. Morgan Smalls (US) 5-8½ (1.74).

PV: 1. Yarisley Silva (Cub) 15-7 (4.75); 2. Katie Nageotte (US) 15-5 (4.70); 3. Alysha Newman (Can) 14-11 (4.55); 4. tie, Olivia Gruver (US) & Rosbeilys Peinado (Ven) 14-11.

LJ: 1. Chantel Malone (BVI) 21-11 (6.68); 2. Keturah Orji (US) 21-10¼ (6.66); 3. Tissanna Hickling (Jam) 21-7½ (6.59);… 8. Aliyah Whisby (US) 20-10½ (6.36).

TJ: 1. Yulimar Rojas (Ven) 49-7 (15.11) NR (WL) (16, x W) (48-10¾, f, 48-1¾, 49-7, f, f) (14.90, f, 14.67, 15.11, f, f);

2. Shanieka Ricketts (Jam) 48-5½ (14.77) PR; 3. Liadagmis Povea (Cub) 47-10¾ (14.60);… 13. Kelly McKee (US) 41-7¼ (12.68); 14. Bria Matthews (US) 39-9¾ (12.13).

SP: 1. Danniel Thomas-Dodd (Jam) 64-1¾ (19.55) NR;

2. Brittany Crew (Can) 62-6¾ (19.07) PR; 3. Jessica Ramsey (US) 62-4½ (19.01); 4. Dani Hill (US) 59-3 (18.06).

DT: 1. Yaimé Pérez (Cub) 218-5 (66.58); 2. Andressa de Morais (Bra) 216-6 (65.98) NR; 3. Fernanda Raquel Martins (Bra) 204-2 (62.23);… 5. Whitney Ashley (US) 197-9 (60.27);… 8. Kelsey Card (US) 193-4 (58.94).

HT: 1. Gwen Berry (US) 244-10 (74.62); 2. Brooke Andersen (US) 233-2 (71.07); 3. Rosa Rodríguez (Ven) 227-11 (69.48).

JT: 1. Kara Winger (US) 213-0 (64.92) (AL) (x, 5 A) (207-8, 213-0, 206-0, 207-5, 200-7, 205-1) (63.31, 64.92, 62.78, 63.23, 61.15, 62.50);

2. Liz Gleadle (Can) 207-8 (63.30); 3. Ari Ince (US) 204-5 (62.32).

Hept(8/7-8): 1. Adriana Rodríguez (Cub) 6113; 2. Annie Kunz (US) 5990; 3. Martha Valeria Araujo (Col) 5925 PR;… 7. Riley Cooks (US) 5516;… dnf—Tyra Gittens (Tri), Yorgelis Rodríguez (Cub).

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