The 2009 Indoor season has started off in fine fashion. The highlight of this past weekend being the 19'8.5" pole vault of Aussie Steven Hooker at the Millrose Games. Hooker's metric 6.01 vault made him the #4 all time performer indoors and left him only .01cm from #2's Jeff Hartwig and Rodion Gautaulin. More importantly he had some very strong attempts at 6.15m which would have broken the venerable Sergei Bubka's Indoor World Record. Hooker looks ready to challenge that rarified air on a consistent basis this year, if this past weekend was any indication.
Another athlete that appeared quite sharp at Millrose was hurdler Terrance Trammell. After sizzling to 12.95 outdoors in 2007, Trammell had a "down" season for him in 2008 running "only" 13.08. He sizzled indoors in Madison Square Garden blitzing 7.45 over 60 meters - just .03 off his PR. Trammell is one of the events top competitors and seems intent on showing that '08 was simply a blip on his radar!
And as if running close to his PR in the hurdles wasn't enough, Trammell did double duty in the open 60 meter dash taking second (6.54) to Michael Rogers' PR 6.51. Rogers became a very promising young sprinter last year twice running a PR 10.06 during the season. Further improvement this indoor season could see him bolster the US's rising young sprint corp. Tyson Gay and Walter Dix could use a bit of help come this summer and the World Championships in Berlin. An improving Rogers could be just what the doctor ordered.
It's early, and the Indoor season usually serves as a diversion for athletes during their base training. But it gives us fans something to talk about until the real running begins somewhere around April.It will be interesting to watch the performances both indoors and down under during the Australian summer season to see who may be emerging this year to challenge the established stars and last years Beijing medal winners.