Lowe sets US women's high jump mark

Chaunte Lowe reacts after setting American record in women's high jump
Chaunte Lowe celebrates after setting the American record.
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Chaunte Lowe set an American record in the women's high jump Sunday at the USA Indoor Track & Field Championships.



These women have paved the way for other female athletes.

The 28-year-old Lowe cleared 6 feet, 7 1/2 inches on her third attempt, eclipsing Tisha Walker, who went 6-7 on Feb. 28, 1998.

"I felt that it was there,'' Lowe said of her record-breaking jump. "I knew in my practice sessions that it was really possible for it to happen today. So I was just thinking about the common mistakes that I make and just trying to force myself not to make those mistakes today.''

Lowe failed in three attempts at 6-8 1/4. It's Lowe's third indoor title, the others coming in 2006 and 2010. But this one, she said, is special because she gave birth to a baby girl last April.

"I think the thing that means the most to me is being able to come back on the world stage and say, 'OK, I'm valid again,' '' Lowe said. "There's always those questions marks after you've had a child. And so being able to come back on the world scene means a lot to me.''

It was the only national record set at the event, but Trell Kimmons turned in the world's best time in the men's 60-meter dash in 6.45 seconds. It was a personal best for Kimmons and 0.06 seconds off Maurice Greene's 11-year-old world record.

"It's a blessing,'' he said. "I'm healthy and this is what I've been aiming for; to be the US champion and to be the fastest man in the world.''

By holding off a late push from Brenda Martinez, Jennifer Simpson successfully defended her title in the 1,500-meter run in 4:15.04, giving her consecutive sweeps of the two distances races.

"I was coming down the home stretch and everybody's going crazy so I didn't hear her,'' Simpson said. "But you know when you hear that, that something's going on. And so you don't shut it down.''

In the 60-meter hurdles finals, Dexter Faulk, who turned in the top American time of the year in Saturday's preliminaries, false-started. She ran again under protest and false-started again, paving the way for Aries Merritt to earn his first championship.

"When I finally got going, I just worked on what I've been working on in practice,'' he said. "I tried to execute as best as I could. My coach told me that in my set position, my butt wasn't coming up high enough so I wasn't in a power position. It was too low. So I made that one little correction and I had a pretty clean race.''

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