Grant to Represent Virginia at Olympic Trials
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Senior Billie-Jo Grant will represent Virginia’s track and field team at the 2008 United States Olympic Trials on June 27 in Eugene, Ore. Grant is scheduled to compete in the qualifying round of the discus at the Trials on Friday, while the finals are scheduled for Sunday, June 29. She hit the “B” standard of entry with her season-best throw of 56.07m on March 29 at the Hurricane Invitational.
The Trials are returning to one of the most hallowed sites in the sport in Hayward Field, the site of the 1972, 1976 and 1980 Olympic Trials, and will run from June 27 July 6. The country’s most prestigious pre-Olympic event, the Olympic Trials is where the roster for Team USA will be selected for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. The top three finishers in each event will be nominated to the 2008 US Olympic Team.
Grant concluded her 2008 campaign by earning her third All-America honor in the discus at the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Championships. Despite battling injury, Grant threw 50.26m to take eighth in the event and earn All-America honors. She was also the 2008 NCAA East Region Champion in the discus and was the 2005 ACC Champion in the event. Grant has earned all-conference honors in each of her three seasons of competition for the Cavaliers and holds Virginia’s all-time record in the throw.
Virginia alumni and former Cavalier All-Americans Erin Crawford, Dawn Cromer (Cleary), Tomika Ferguson and Kiamesha Otay will also compete in the trials, in addition to Cavalier volunteer assistant coach Adam Nelson.
Crawford earned All-America status in the 400m hurdles in 2006. The 2007 graduate will compete in the quarterfinals of the intermediate hurdles at the Trials on Friday, June 27. The semifinals are scheduled for Saturday, with the finals slated for Sunday.
Cromer, a 2003 graduate, earned All-America honors in the steeplechase in her final season and will compete in the semifinals of the event at the Trials on Monday, June 30. The finals are scheduled for Thursday, July 3.
Ferguson, a two-time All-American for the Cavaliers will compete in the triple jump. Ferguson earned All-America honors in 2006 and 2007 and will compete in the qualifying round of the triple jump at the Olympic Trials on Friday, June 27. The finals are scheduled for Sunday, July 6.
Otey was also a two-time All-American for Virginia. The long jumper earned All-America honors in 2002 and 2003 and will compete in the qualifying round of the jump on Monday, June 30. The finals are set for Thursday, July 3.
Nelson, the most decorated shot putter in history, is a two-time Olympic silver medalist. He is arguably the most celebrated shot putter in recent history, but has yet to claim Olympic gold. With his throw of 73’6” in the indoor season, he lays claim to the third farthest throw in the history of indoor track and field. For more information, visit http://www.usatf.org/athletes/bios/Nelson_Adam.asp.