Jessica Ennis-Hill

Jessica Ennis-Hill considers switch from heptathlon

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Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis-Hill has thought about switching to the 100m hurdles after she returns to track and field, likely next year following the expected birth of her child in July.

“It would be fantastic to go to Rio [de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics] in the heptathlon, but I have definitely thought about the hurdles,” Ennis-Hill said Wednesday, according to the Guardian. “It’s nice to have that option. It’s just a case of seeing how I get back into training. My ankle is a weak area and, if you have time away from sport, it flares up. That’s why I’ve been running and doing rehab during my pregnancy. When I come back I’m going to scan it again and make sure where it needs to be.”

“It is just going to be seeing how I get back into training and see how it all comes together — I’ve always got the hurdles there,” she said, according to the Independent.

Ennis-Hill, 28, has barely competed since her London Olympic triumph. She got married last May, missed last year’s World Championships in the summer with an Achilles injury and announced her pregnancy in January.

She owns the British record of 12.54 seconds in the 100m hurdles, which would have placed fourth at the London Olympics.

She wouldn’t be the first Olympic multi-event champion to focus on a single competition. Jackie Joyner-Kersee won three Olympic medals each in the heptathlon and the long jump. Reigning Olympic decathlon champion Ashton Eaton is running the 400m hurdles this season.

If Ennis-Hill sticks to the heptathlon for Rio 2016, she will try to join Joyner-Kersee as the only multiple Olympic gold medalists in the event.

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Bobby Joe Morrow, triple Olympic sprint champion, dies at 84

Bobby Joe Morrow
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Bobby Joe Morrow, one of four men to win the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at one Olympics, died at age 84 on Saturday.

Morrow’s family said he died of natural causes.

Morrow swept the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, joining Jesse Owens as the only men to accomplish the feat. Later, Carl Lewis and Usain Bolt did the same.

Morrow, raised on a farm in San Benito, Texas, set 11 world records in a short career, according to World Athletics.

He competed in one Olympics, and that year was named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year while a student at Abilene Christian. He beat out Mickey Mantle and Floyd Patterson.

“Bobby had a fluidity of motion like nothing I’d ever seen,” Oliver Jackson, the Abilene Christian coach, said, according to Sports Illustrated in 2000. “He could run a 220 with a root beer float on his head and never spill a drop. I made an adjustment to his start when Bobby was a freshman. After that, my only advice to him was to change his major from sciences to speech, because he’d be destined to make a bunch of them.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Johnny Gregorek runs fastest blue jeans mile in history

Johnny Gregorek
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Johnny Gregorek, a U.S. Olympic hopeful runner, clocked what is believed to be the fastest mile in history for somebody wearing jeans.

Gregorek recorded a reported 4 minutes, 6.25 seconds, on Saturday to break the record by more than five seconds (with a pacer for the first two-plus laps). Gregorek, after the record run streamed live on his Instagram, said he wore a pair of 100 percent cotton Levi’s.

Gregorek, the 28-year-old son of a 1980 and 1984 U.S. Olympic steeplechaser, finished 10th in the 2017 World Championships 1500m. He was sixth at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.

He ranked No. 1 in the country for the indoor mile in 2019, clocking 3:49.98. His outdoor mile personal best is 3:52.94, ranking him 30th in American history.

Before the attempt, a fundraiser was started for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, garnering more than $29,000. Gregorek ran in memory of younger brother Patrick, who died suddenly in March 2019.

“Paddy was a fan of anything silly,” Gregorek posted. “I think an all out mile in jeans would tickle him sufficiently!”

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