EUGENE, Ore. (July 4) — Athing Mu, the reigning world and Olympic champion in the women’s 800m, is set to test her fitness this season when she lines up in the 1500m event at this year’s USATF Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The competition will take place at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, throughout the week.
While Mu is not expected to compete in the 1500m at the upcoming World Championships, her participation in the event adds an exciting dimension to the national trials as she continues to work on her race shape for Budapest 2023.
The 21-year-old has made just one appearance this season over 800m, but she dominated the event at the 2023 USATF New York City Grand Prix, finishing with an impressive time of 1:58.73. Read more: When is the 2023 USATF Outdoor Championships and how to watch live?
This achievement demonstrates her potential to excel in different disciplines. Despite limited outings this season, Mu, whose personal best is 4:16.06, is confident in her form and aims to complete at least one round of the 1500m.
Athing Mu To Run Just One Round?
The star runner has already earned a bye for the 800m event at the 2023 World Athletics Championships, having won the gold medal at the last championships, so she doesn’t need to qualify for the event to be held in Budapest, Hungary, in August.
However, USATF regulations stipulate that athletes must compete in at least one round of an event during the trials to be eligible for national selection.
Nonetheless, it wouldn’t come as a surprise if she chooses to focus solely on the heats on Thursday, even if she progresses to the final stages of the championships.
Meanwhile, Sinclaire Johnson, the current national champion, enters the USATF Outdoor Track and Field Championships in excellent form. Recently, she achieved the second-fastest time of her career, clocking 4:00.77 at the Stumptown Twilight Meet in Portland, Oregon, last month.
However, Johnson is likely to face fierce competition from formidable rivals such as Cory McGee, Heather MacLean, and Elise Cranny.
Also joining the lineup in the women’s 1500m at Hayward Field are accomplished athletes Nikki Hiltz, Emily Mackay, Helen Schlachtenhaufen, and the promising 19-year-old talent from Huntington University, Addy Wiley.
Wiley, with a season and personal best time of 4:03.22, enters the championships with a lot of potential and anticipation surrounding her performance.
Josette Andrews, Katelyn Tuohy Among Scratches
Notably absent from the 1500m event is Josette Andrews, who has decided to concentrate solely on the 5000m at the U.S. Trials.
Several other top athletes have also withdrawn from the women’s 1500m at the 2023 USATF Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
Alongside Andrews, Katelyn Tuohy and Whittni Morgan have chosen to also focus solely on competing in the 5000m.
The women’s 1500m event will commence on the opening night of the U.S. Trials, with the first round scheduled for Thursday at 10:26 p.m. ET.