INDIANAPOLIS - Duane Solomon (Los Angeles, Calif.) has been named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week after setting a 600-meter American record of 1:15.70 at the Five Nations Match in Glasgow, Scotland, on Saturday.
Solomon’s time bettered the nearly 26-year-old record of 1:15.80 set by Chip Jenkins.
“The record wasn’t even on my mind,” Solomon admitted. “This was my rust-buster race of the year. I was definitely eyeing the record for Millrose, but not my first race.”
This was Solomon’s first race since his 2012 season that saw him finish fourth at the Olympic Games and claim the No. 2 spot on the all-time U.S. list, only behind his coach Johnny Gray.
“It is really good to start my season this way,” Solomon said. “After the games and the competitions after, I took two weeks off, but I really didn’t loose any fitness. [My coach and I] wanted to build on what we had done the previous year, and I feel we are starting the year just right.”
With Solomon having a better than expected 2013 debut, he was forced to alter his goals for the Feb. 16 Millrose Games at the Armory.
“The whole idea was to go after the American record at Millrose,” Solomon said. “now it might be the world record.”
The current 600m world record of 1:15.12 was set in 1999 by Nico Motchebon of Germany.
Now in its 12th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on www.usatf.org. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.
2013 Winners: January 9, Bobby Mack; January 16, Mary Cain; January 22, Ajeé Wilson; January 30, Duane Solomon
About USA Track & Field
USA Track & Field (USATF) is the National Governing Body for track & field, long-distance running and race walking in the United States. USATF encompasses the world's oldest organized sports, the World's #1 Track & Field Team, the most-watched events at the Olympics, the #1 high school and junior high school participatory sport, and more than 30 million adult runners in the United States: USATF.org.