Former Kansas Track Star Wins American 400 Meter Title
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Kansas alumnus Kyle Clemons won gold in the 400 meters Sunday at the USA Track & Field Championships Sunday. Clemons clocked in with a winning time of 45.60, a lifetime best and the fastest 400 meters by an American this year.
Clemons, who ran for the Jayhawks from 2010-13, was nothing short of stellar in his performance inside the Albuquerque Convention Center. Running in the first of two finals heats, Clemons ran away from his competitors by finishing his quarter mile in 45.60. The time is the third-fastest in the world in 2014 and the best mark by an American in the event as well.
In the second finals heat, Clemons could only watch as the four remaining athletes attempted to top his mark. The winner of the heat, David Verburg, came within .02 seconds of the Rowlett, Texas native’s time, but couldn’t surpass it, leaving the victory and the gold medal to Clemons.
With the win, Clemons clinched the automatic bid to represent Team USA at the IAAF World Championships set to take place in Sopot, Poland March 7-9.
Clemons’ national title marks the second-straight year a former KU track athlete has won an event at the USATF Indoor Championships. Pole vaulter Jordan Scott (2007-11) claimed gold in his event at the same meet in 2013.
Several other KU athletes competed at the USA Championships this weekend, including 12-time All-American and three-time NCAA Champion Andrea Geubelle, who tallied second and third-place finishes in the triple jump and long jump, respectively. The defending American indoor pole vault champion, Scott, posted a 10th-place finish in the pole vault and Zach Zarda (2008-2011) took 14th in the 3,000 meters.
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