The 38th annual Prefontaine Classic will be held June 2-3 in Eugene, Ore. Soquel’s own Maggie Vessey, an Olympic hopeful, is among the entrants to race in the women’s 800 meters on Friday, June 2. Here’s part of an IAAF.org press release on the event:
The women’s 800 metres brings together an elite field led by two world-class Americans who are the fastest since the turn of the century in Alysia Montano and Maggie Vessey.
Both Montano and Vessey were finalists at last year’s World Championships in Daegu. Montano was just out of the medals in fourth and Vessey a stride back in sixth. Montano, a three-time U.S. champion who earned bronze at the 2010 World Indoor Championships, has a best of 1:57.34, making her the fifth-fastest in U.S. history. Vessey, with a best of 1:57.84, is not far behind as the eighth-fastest American.
Several others with Olympic dreams are entered, including one attempting to repeat past success. Last year’s 3rd-ranked American Alice Schmidt is a veteran of the 2008 Olympics as well as three World Championships. Among those in the field are American Erica Moore, bronze medalist at this year’s World Indoor Championships, and Ethiopian Fantu Magiso Manedo, a 19-year-old who finished fourth at this year’s World Indoor Championships. Two other key entrants are Molly Beckwith, winner of the Penn Relays mile last week, and past NCAA champions Phoebe Wright and Geena Gall.