(BEIJING, July 7) -- Lolo Jones, gold medalist in the 2008 Valencia World Indoor Championships, finished the 100-meter Hurdles in 12.29 seconds at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials on Sunday afternoon. Her impressive performance awarded her the first ticket to Beijing in the 100-meter hurdles.
Jones took part in the 2004 US Olympic Outdoor Trials four years ago, but with a disappointing performance, she could not be a member of the US squad at the last Games. She had a breakthrough 2006 season, in which she set her personal best time of 12.56 seconds in the event, and won two meets on the tough European circuit. According to Track and Field News, Jones wrapped up that year in fourth place in US rankings and seventh place in world rankings. Jones kept up that momentum in 2007, winning her first national championship by dominating the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.88 seconds. In Osaka that same year, she secured third place in the 100-meter hurdles at the World Championships.
Jones started the 2008 season with dreams of fighting for the US at the 2008 Summer Olympics. "This just shows not to give up because four years ago I didn't event make the final and now I'm the U.S.A. Outdoor Champion. Really, I never won anything growing up and I finally had victory at just the right time," Jones said after winning first place.
Damu Cherry ran a time of 12.58 seconds and Dawn Harper came in at 12.62 seconds. They are the other two who have made it onto the US 100-meter Hurdles squad for Beijing. "She (Lolo Jones) did awesome," Cheery said of Jones. "You can't take that away from her. She ran really, really well, but I know I can run just as fast, too. We have a great team. We are all just going to go there and see what happens in Beijing. We have a really, really good team, so I am really pumped by it."
Athens Games gold medalist Joanna Hayes finished last with 12.96 seconds. With this time, she was nowhere near defending her title earned in 2004, when she clocked 12.37.