Jamaican born sprint sensation Usain “Lighting” Bolt will compete in the 100 meters at the adidas Grand Prix in New York City on June 12th. The adidas Grand Prix, formerly known as the Reebok Grand Prix, will be the fifth stop on the inaugural IAAF Diamond League circuit and will be held at Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island.
Bolt, the reigning triple-Olympic Champion (100m, 200m and 4x100m) and triple-World Champion, is one of the most popular and sought after sports personalities in the world. A showman both on and off the track, Bolt shocked the world in Beijing in 2008, not just by winning the 100m gold medal but by doing so in a never-before-seen dominating and entertaining world record effort. He followed up this victory just days later with another historic world record at 200m (19.30) and again in the 4x100m Relay (37.10).
In 2009, Bolt outperformed the world as well as his own seemingly untouchable world best marks with two more records (9.58 for 100m and 19.19 for 200m) at the IAAF World Championships in Berlin. Ranked #1 in the world at 100m and 200m in 2008 and 2009, Bolt was also named Athlete-of-the Year by the IAAF in both years.
Newly crowned world indoor champions Bernard Lagat of the United States and Jessica Ennis of Great Britain as well as American record-holder Hyleas Fountain will ride the wave of their recent successes when they compete at the adidas Grand Prix.
Lagat joins Bolt as the featured athletes in their respective events, the 1500 and 100m. The golden girl of British Athletics, Ennis will face-off against Fountain, the Olympic heptathlon silver medalist, in a special multi-event challenge featuring the long jump, shot put, and 100m hurdles. The adidas Grand Prix will be Ennis’ U.S. debut, and it will be Fountain’s first appearance.
“Winning the world indoor title gives me a load of confidence heading into the summer, and now what a great opportunity it is for the multis to be included within the adidas Grand Prix’s Diamond League structure,” Ennis said. “This meet is known for producing great results, and I’m excited to use the energy and support of the New York City crowd in making my U.S. debut.”
Lagat, 35, of Tucson, Ariz., captured his second world indoor title in the 3000m at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Doha in early March, making him the first U.S. champion in the event. The victory brings his career World Championship medal count to eight—four of them gold. A two-time Olympic medalist, Lagat most recently made history in New York, winning his record eighth Wanamaker Mile at the Millrose Games in Madison Square Garden in January.
Ennis, 24, is dubbed the world’s greatest female athlete after becoming the first British woman to win both indoor and outdoor world titles in 2009 and 2010. She was victorious this month in Doha, and just seven months prior, Ennis dominated in similar fashion, setting a personal best in becoming the world heptathlon champion at the IAAF World Outdoor Championships in Berlin.
Fountain, 29, of Kettering, Ohio, also had a stellar performance in Doha, finishing fourth in the pentathlon and equaling the American record of 4,753 set in 1999 by DeeDee Nathan. It was an encouraging performance for Fountain, who was forced to miss the World Outdoor Championships last summer due to an injury after winning the Olympic silver medal in Beijing a year earlier.
The media accreditation process opens today; journalists interested in covering the event can access the application at the website. Updates, photos, and additional information can found at the adidas Grand Prix pages on Facebook and Twitter.
The adidas Grand Prix, in its sixth year, is the nation’s premier outdoor track & field invitational meet. It features Olympic stars, top high school athletes from the USA and Jamaica and a “Fastest Kid in New York” competition. Increased and upgraded backstretch seating at track level is being added to accommodate the growing demand and interest from fans in the New York area.