TRACK & FIELD: World class performances highlight Sierra Gold Festival | TheUnion.com

TRACK & FIELD: World class performances highlight Sierra Gold Festival

Hundreds of elite athletes from all across the nation found their way to Nevada Union Hooper Stadium to compete in the third annual Sierra Gold Masters Track and Field Festival Saturday.

"It was real exciting," said event organizer and Sierra Gold coach Clyde Lehman. "It has gotten bigger and better."

The event featured more than 200 athletes competing in an event that is quickly gaining in popularity among Masters athletes. Highlighting the day long festival was multiple national and world record setting performances.

Two world records were set at this year's festival. Linda Cohn, from the SC Striders team, set the world record in the women's 65-69 javelin with a throw of 34.8 meters. Damien Leake, also of the SC Striders team, set the world record in the men's 65-69 100-meter dash. Leake tallied a time of 12.31 seconds.

Both Cohn and Leake received $1,000 checks for their record setting performances.

In addition to the world records, two U.S. records also were set at the meet. Charles Allie, of Houston Elite, ran the men's 70-74 200m in 26.77 seconds to set the national mark. The other U.S. record was set when JoAnne Mariott notched a distance of 12.03m in the women's 75-79 weight throw.

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Allie and Marriott both received $500 checks for their accomplishments.

Also making their presence known at the meet was the host team, Sierra Gold, who boasted dozens of athletes competing throughout the day. The Sierra Gold squad finished with a whopping 640 points as a team, topping the SC Striders, who took second, by more than 400 points.

"That was really gratifying for me," said Lehman. "To see Sierra Gold competing as a team, as a thorough team. We had athletes in every event: all the throwing events, all the running events and all the jumping events. And, to see our green and gold colors everywhere was really gratifying."

The festival also features a Heroes Relay in which local law enforcement agencies, fire agencies and search and rescue agencies race each other in a 4×100 relay. This year it was Justin Miller, Brian Gonzalez, Jesse Mullens and Wayne Repard who combined to take first place for the California Highway Patrol team.

For complete results from the Sierra Gold Masters Track and Field Festival visit http://redcaptiming.com/2018/.

With the third annual Sierra Gold Masters Track and Field Festival now in the books, the Sierra Gold team will now turn its attention to the upcoming USATF Masters Outdoor Championships July 26-29 in Spokane, Washington.

"To finish top 10 in the country as a team is our goal and that's not idealism, that could be a reality," Lehman said. "Could you imagine, little Grass Valley could have a team in top 10 in the country."

To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email wford@theunion.com.

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