Mills pleased with the IAAF's reduction of the qualifying standards for six events
Ryon Jones, Gleaner Writer
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) decision to lower the qualifying standards for six events, including the 400m for both men and women and the 400m hurdles for women, has been welcomed by Glen Mills, the man at the helm of coaching duties at the Racers Track Club, which boasts a number of quarter-milers.
The IAAF stated yesterday on their website that following a study on the approved qualification standards for the athletics competitions of the Games of the XXX (30th) Olympiad, London 2012, the requirements in six event disciplines have been eased.
The A qualifyingstandard in the men's 400m has been reduced from 45.25 to 45.30 seconds, while the B standard is now 45.90, down from the previous mark of 45.70 seconds.
In the women's equivalent the new A standard is 51.55, with the previous requirement being 51.50 seconds. The B standard has also been adjusted by .05 seconds to now stand at 52.35 seconds.
The A qualifying standard for the women's 400m hurdles is now 55.50, down by .10 seconds, while the B standard has been reduced by the same margin to stand at 56.65 seconds.
"I have always thought that the 400m standard was far too high compared to some of the other events, so I am glad that they have rethought the process," Mills expressed to The Gleaner following the launch of inaugural Racers Zenith Awards yesterday at the Spanish Court Hotel.
"I think what might have happened is that in the 400m they haven't been able to fill a lot of the early rounds, and based on what happened last season, it wasn't a great year in terms of 400 (metres) numbers," he further reasoned.
The three other qualifying marks that have been revised are all in women's events.
They are the 5000m, with the A standard now 15:20.00 minutes, and the B standard 15:30.00 minutes; both reduced by .10 seconds.
In the shot put, competitors are now required to throw a distance of 18.30m to achieve the A qualifying standard, as opposed to the previous mark of 18.35m, while the B standard is now 17.20m, down by .10 metres.
Only the A qualifying standard has been altered for the javelin, now 61.00m after being reduced by .10 metres.
The London 2012 qualification standards, which were originally approved by the IAAF Council in April 2011, were reviewed by the technical delegates on the basis of the results of the 2011 IAAF World Championships, Daegu, Korea, and the overall 2011 world season lists.
The adjustments were then made in an effort to ensure that the correct number of athletes will be entered in each event for next year's Olympic Games, according to the IAAF's website.
Adjusted events and times
A standard - 45.30 (previously 45.25)
B standard - 45.90 (45.70)
A standard - 51.55 (previously 51.50)
B standard - 52.35 (52.30)
A standard - 15:20.00 (15:15.00)
B standard - 15:30.00 (15:25.00)
A standard - 55.50 (55.40)
B standard - 56.65 (56.55)
A standard - 18.30 (18.35)
B standard - 17.20 (17.30)
A standard - 61.00 (61.50)
B standard - no change