Sandy Fowler's World Championship Report: Part II



The Alabama women's track and field coach is serving as the United States Head Coach
Sunday, August 14, 2005




EDITOR'S NOTE: Sandy Fowler, head coach of the Alabama women’s track and field team, is spending August in Helsinki, Finland as Head Coach of the United States World Championship Team. So far, under her guidance, the U.S. has done very well. Coach Fowler took time out from a very hectic schedule to share this update.

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All is going well here. Here is another update from the championship. This will be the last as things are beginning to wrap up here in Helsinki. The United States Women’s Team has now have won 10 total medals at the World Championship, 5 gold, 4 silver and 1 bronze.

Our medal winners since my last update are: Allyson Felix took gold and Rachelle Boone-Smith took silver in the 200m dash; Lashinda Demus and Sandra Glover respectively took silver and bronze respitvely in the 400m hurdles; the 4x100 relay of Angela Daigle, Muna Lee, Me’Lisa Barber and Lauryn Williams took gold, with a world leading time. Relays are always very nerve wrenching because of the baton passing. Our team worked great together and executed the passing to excellence. This gold will make up for a little of the sorrow that came out of the Olympics from last year.

We did have some disappointment in the 4x400 relay as our team was disqualified because the first leg ran on the lane line. Because of that disqualification we will not be in the final tonight (the last night of the championship).

Tonight we only have runners in the day’s first event, the marathon. If we can get a medal in that (it would be great, but not expected) that would give us 11. As of now we stand at 10 medals for the women and 22 overall for both men and women. The USA is leading the medal count overall and in the men. The 10 for women exceeds the USA medal count of six from last year’s Olympics. We are all happy about that.

I’ve had some time to get into town and do some shopping and see a few sights. There is a “cool” place here that is made out of ice and is at a constant -05 degree C. They give you parkas and gloves and allow you in for about 20 minutes - very unique. We may visit Estonia tomorrow, which is a 1.5 hour ride on a jet boat across the Baltic Sea.

Life in the Village is still busy but a few people have already left. It will be really hectic on Monday when almost everyone is leaving. We get up early and always stay up past midnight with staff meetings and celebrations with medal winners. The Finnish crowd finally got something to cheer about with a bronze medal in the men’s long jump. You would have thought they won the gold with the celebration. It was nice to have them win a medal because they have put on a great championship. The stadium remains packed each night as the Finns support all of the athletes. It seemed to let up on the rain the past 2 day but the rain has begun again as morning broke Sunday.

Miguel Pate and Tim Broe, former Bama athletes did not advance out of their initial qualifying first rounds in the long jump and 5000 respectfully.

It’s been an incredible experience, but I am also ready to return to Alabama and get the 2005-06 season started!

Roll Tide Roll, Go USA
Sandy Fowler