American sprinter Jessica Beard is looking forward to making her outdoor season debut in the 400 meters at the 2021 USATF Sprint Summit in Prairie View, Texas, this weekend. The USATF Sprint Summit is a silver level meeting on the World Athletics Continental Tour – and part of the 2021 USATF Journey to Gold – Tokyo Outdoor Track & Field Series. WATCH LIVE WEBCAST STREAM – USATF SPRINT SUMMIT 2021. Live Results Here
Beard Targets Set For USATF Sprint Summit
Beard, who opened her outdoor Olympic season with a 23.18 seconds runner-up finish to fellow American Tamari Davis at the 15th Spring Break Classic Invitational in Puerto Rico earlier this month, told World-Track and Field on Wednesday that she is hoping to run in the mid 51 seconds for the 400m and is targeting a sub-23 seconds performance for the 200m on Saturday.
“I normally open up with mid-51 seconds so I’d like to execute my race to run that at the very least,” Beard told World-Track.org. “I would also like to run sub 23 in the 200m.”
The 32-year-old three-time world championships 4x400m gold medalist was part of the Empire Athletics quartet that ran 3:32.79 at the 15th Spring Break Classic Invitational, alongside Carline Muir, Sam Dirks, and Davis, but she is excited about running the open 400m for the first time in the 2021 outdoor season.
“It’s 400 RACE WEEK! Beard wrote on her official Twitter account this week. “The excitement that comes with opening up in your specialty-event is hard to describe! she added.
Prepare To Make First Olympic Games Team
Beard, who failed to make it out of her first-round heat during the last U.S. Olympic Trials in 2016 after running 52.52, will be hoping for a different outcome this summer.
The USATF Sprint Summit is the first of the 11 meetings in the Journey to Gold-Tokyo Series, with the Miramar Invitational in Florida on April 10, the Drake Relays, USATF Grand Prix on April 24, the USATF Golden Games at Mt. San Antonio College on May 9, and the adidas Boost Boston Games on May 23 also on the list of featured meetings for this season.
USATF CEO Max Siegel is delighted with the high-profile lineup of meetings ahead of the Tokyo Olympic Games later this summer.
“We look forward to seeing athletes competing again after such a challenging year,” Siegel said.