Former TCU standout races back to Olympics

Posted Monday, Jun. 25, 2012  comments  Print Reprints
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EUGENE, Ore. -- On his website, Khadevis Robinson confidently asserts, "What we dare to believe is possible."

At age 35, the former TCU and Trimble Tech runner dared to believe that he again could win a place on the U.S. Olympic team.

Coming from seventh place and stuck in the outside lane on the final curve, Robinson surged to a second-place finish in the men's 800 meters of the U.S. Olympic Trials here Monday night.

His time of 1:44.64 trailed only Nicholas Symmonds of the Oregon Track Club, who won the final in 1:43.92. Joining them at the London Olympics will be Duane Solomon, who finished third in 1:44.65.

It will be Robinson's second trip to the Games. He finished second in the Trials in 2004 and represented the U.S. in Athens.

Four years later, in a lean at the finish line, he lost the third and final place in the Trials by .06 seconds.

He would have retired then, Robinson said last weekend, but he realized from fans' reactions and e-mails that he still could inspire people with his running.

"There is power in pursuit," he said.

Also on Monday night at historic Hayward Field, Texas A&M product Sam Humphreys won the javelin event with a throw of 268 feet, 7 inches. Because he has not met the "A" qualifying standard, however -- his winning mark was short by about five inches -- the javelin throwers headed to London will be the only three who have: Craig Kinsley, Sean Furey and Cyrus Hostetler.

Each had previously thrown at least 269-0 in competition. In Hostetler's case, the mark came in 2011, which somehow is still within the time frame allowed by the Olympic A standard.

Winners of the Trials who have met an event's "B" standard, as Humphreys has, can be placed on the Olympic team. But a nation isn't allowed to mix B qualifiers and A qualifiers, and so the U.S. team's options were to send one competitor in the javelin or three.

"I'm superbly ecstatic," Humphreys said nonetheless. "To be here in this position, although not going to the Olympics and being short by 14 centimeters, is heartbreaking. But I'm on top of the world right now.

"I'm a little upset, but I have a lot more room for improvement. There is always the next four years to get that mark."

With rain falling and thunder in the distance -- not exactly the best conditions to be holding aloft a metal pole -- Humphreys unleashed his winning effort on his second throw, and then he watched as no one could come within three feet of his mark.

Earlier in the day, Texas Tech ex Jason Young qualified for the finals in the discus with a throw of 201-3, fourth-best among the 12 who will competing in Thursday's finals.

Young will be joined by Nick Jones of Abilene Christian, whose 194-1 was the 11th-best throw.

Rice's Becky Wade, a graduate of Ursuline Academy in Dallas, qualified for the finals in the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase by finishing fifth in her heat.

The steeplechase finals are set for Friday night.

Wade, 23, had qualified to run the 10,000 meters at the Trials after finishing eighth in that event at the NCAA Championships. She scratched from the 10,000, however, because she felt that her chances of making the Olympic team were better in the steeple.

She settled into sixth place on the race's second lap and moved up to fifth in the final 200 meters. The top five finishers in the event's two heats were guaranteed a place in the finals, with the other two finalists determined by finishing times. Wade didn't want to take a chance on that.

"I try to not [count places]," she said, "but toward the end it's really hard not to. I knew fifth place was in reach, and once I realized that, I kind of went for it."

The race, as with most events Monday, was held during a steady rainfall.

"I was going to try to run fast and go for the A standard [the Olympic qualifying mark], but the conditions didn't really help that too much," Wade said. "My positioning and the way I ran the race weren't perfect for that. So I just wanted to be up there in the mix.

"Now we can focus on Friday."

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