Tora Harris

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Tora Harris
College Princeton
Conference Ivy
Sport Track and field
Class 2002
Career 1998–present
Height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight 183 lb (83 kg)
Nationality American
Born (1978-09-21) September 21, 1978 (age 35)
High school South Atlanta High School
Career highlights
Honors
  • 2004 Olympian
  • 4x NCAA high jump outdoor All-American
  • NCAA high jump indoor All-American
  • 2002 & 2006 #1 ranked American high jumper
Records
  • Ivy League indoor high jump:7 feet 3.25 inches (2.22 m)
  • Ivy League outdoor high jump:(7 feet 7 inches (2.31 m))
Championships
U.S. Nationals
  • 2005 & 2007 indoor high jump champion
  • 2006 & 2009 outdoor high jump champion
NCAA
  • 2002 indoor high jump champion
  • 2002 outdoor high jump champion
Ivy League/Heptagonal
  • 4x indoor high jump champion
  • 4x outdoor high jump champion
Tora Harris
Medal record
Men's athletics
Competitor for the United States United States
Universiade
Bronze 2001 Beijing High jump
IAAF World Cup
Bronze 2006 Athens High jump
U.S. Indoor Nationals
Silver 2003 Boston High jump
Silver 2004 High jump
Gold 2005 Boston High jump
Silver 2006 High jump
Gold 2007 High jump
U.S. Outdoor Nationals/Olympic Trials
Bronze 2004 Sacramento High jump
Gold 2006 Indianapolis High jump
Gold 2009 Eugene High jump
Silver 2010 Des Moines High jump

Tora Harris (born 21 September 1978) is an American high jumper. He is a Princeton University engineer of Taiwanese and African-American descent. Harris is an Olympian, a four-time national champion and two-time bronze medalist in international competition. He represented Team USA twice in the IAAF World Championships in Athletics, three times in the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Athletics and has served as a representative once in the IAAF Continental Cup. He spent two years as the number one ranked high jumper in the United States.

In college, Harris was a five-time All-American, while earning the two individual (2002 indoor and outdoor) National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championships. He also represented Team USA at one World University Games. He is both the Ivy League indoor and outdoor high jump record holder and Princeton's only two-time NCAA individual event track and field champion. He is an eight-time individual Ivy League/Heptagonal champion, winning the indoor and outdoor high jump championships four times each.

Early life[edit]

His mother, Susan (Su-Chen),[1] is Taiwanese. His father, who died in 2000, was African American.[1] His parents made him take Chinese lessons when he was young,[1] and he now speaks the language fluently.[2] He attended first grade in Taiwan, where he was introduced to jumping.[1] Harris high jumped 7 feet (2.13 m) in high school.[3] He placed second in the 1997 Georgia High School Association Class AAA high jump championships.[4] Harris is a 1997 alumnus of South Atlanta High School and was a member of Princeton University's graduating class of 2002.[2] Harris studied mechanical and aerospace engineering at Princeton.[5]

College career[edit]

While at Princeton, Harris excelled at intercollegiate athletics. Harris was a four-time NCAA Outdoor Track & Field All-American placing 7th, 5th, 4th and 1st in 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2002, respectively.[6][7] He also was an NCAA Indoor All-American in 2002 when he placed 1st at the NCAA Championships.[2][8][9] He did not participate in intercollegiate competition in 2000 in order to prepare for the 2000 United States Olympic trials.[8] He failed to make the team after finishing seventh at the Olympic trials.[1]

He earned his the indoor heptagonal championships in 2001, tying an Ivy League indoor record (7 feet 3.25 inches (2.22 m)) that still stood as of 2011.[10][11] He won the 2001 outdoor Heptagonal championships with a record jump of 7 feet 5.25 inches (2.27 m).[12][13] That year he was the Indoor Heptagonal Championships Most Outstanding Performer and Outdoor Heptagonal Championships Most Outstanding Performer as well as the Mid-Atlantic Region Male Indoor Athlete of the Year as selected by the United States Track Coaches Association.[11][13][14] He won a bronze medal at the 2001 World University Games.[15] His 2002 outdoor Heptagonal championships performance of 7 feet 7 inches (2.31 m) continues to be an Ivy League outdoor record.[16][17][18]

Harris concluded his collegiate career with a total of eight Ivy League/Heptagonal individual championships.[18][19] He was also both the NCAA indoor and outdoor champion in 2002.[15][20] By winning both the indoor and outdoor NCAA championships, he became Princeton's only two-time NCAA individual event track and field champion.[7] He finished second to Yasser El Halaby as Princeton's Athlete of the 2000–09 Decade.[16][21]

Professional career[edit]

He was a two-time United States National indoor champion (2005 and 2007)[22][23] and a two-time United States National outdoor champion (2006 and 2009).[24][25][26] At the 2003 USA Indoor Track and Field Championships, Harris, Charles Austin and Charles Clinger all posted heights of 7 feet 6.5 inches (2.30 m), with Austin claiming gold based on fewer misses and Harris winning a jump off for silver.[27][28] On two other occasions (2006 Indoor vs. Adam Shunk at 2.25 m, and 2010 Outdoor vs. Jesse Williams at 2.26 m)[29][30] he earned silver medals at the US national championships despite clearing as high a height as the gold medalist.

He was a member of the United States team at the 2004 Summer Olympics along with high jumpers Matt Hemingway and Jamie Nieto. Harris failed to advance past the first round when he could not clear 7 feet 2.5 inches (2.20 m) on any of his three attempts leaving him with a best height of 7 feet (2.13 m) and a 17th place finish.[31] He represented the United States at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics in both 2003 and 2009 and in the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Athletics in 2003, 2004 and 2006.[32] He won a bronze medal at the 2006 IAAF World Cup.[15]

Harris was the number 1 ranked high jumper in the United States according to Track & Field News in both 2002 and 2006 and was among the top 10 every year from 2001 through 2009.[8] His personal best jump is 2.33 metres, achieved in June 2006 in Indianapolis.[15] Harris trains out of his Chula Vista, California residence.[33]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Hollander, Sophia (2002-05-07). "Track and Field; A Princeton Senior Is Setting the Bar Higher". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  2. ^ a b c "Tora Harris (Bio)". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  3. ^ Yike, Jim (2005). "Georgia's All Time Honor Roll updated through 2005!". MileSplit. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  4. ^ "Georgia High School Association". Georgia High School Association. p. 195. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  5. ^ "Tora Harris". U.S. Athletic Trust. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  6. ^ "Tora Harris Earns All-America In High Jump". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2002-06-01. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  7. ^ a b "Harris is the 2002 NCAA Outdoor High Jump Champion". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2002-03-08. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  8. ^ a b c "Tora Harris (Events & Rankings)". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  9. ^ "Tora Harris - the Nation's Best". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2002-03-08. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  10. ^ "The Ivy League Record Books 2011–12". IvyLeagueSports.com. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  11. ^ a b "Men's Track and Field Wins Fourth Consecutive Heps Title". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2001-02-25. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  12. ^ "Meet Top 10". HepsTrack.com. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  13. ^ a b "Princeton's Men Place Second, Women Eighth at Outdoor Heptagonal Championships". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2001-05-05. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  14. ^ "Tora Harris Named Mid-Atlantic Male Indoor Athlete of the Year". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2001-03-04. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  15. ^ a b c d "Biographies: Harris Tora USA". International Association of Athletics Federations. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  16. ^ a b "Top Male Athletes Of The Decade: No. 2 Tora Harris '02". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2009-12-29. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  17. ^ "All-Time Marks". HepsTrack.com. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  18. ^ a b "Tora Harris Sets Nation's High Mark as Princeton Finishes Second at HEPS". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2002-05-11. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  19. ^ "Men's Track and Field Captures Fifth Consecutive Indoor HEPs Title". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2002-02-24. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  20. ^ Longman, Jere (2011-04-28). "Diverse Interests, One Goal". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  21. ^ "Top Male Athletes Of The Decade: No. 1 Yasser El Halaby ’06". Princeton Athletic Communications. 2009-12-30. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  22. ^ "2005 USA Indoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  23. ^ "2007 USA Indoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  24. ^ "2006 AT&T USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  25. ^ "2009 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  26. ^ "USA Outdoor Track & Field Champions: Men's High Jump". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  27. ^ Denman, Elliott (2003-03-03). "Track and Field; Dragila, Using Longer Pole, Raises the Bar in the Vault". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  28. ^ "2003 USA Indoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  29. ^ "2006 AT&T USA Indoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  30. ^ "2010 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  31. ^ Denman, Elliott (2004-08-20). "Harris eliminated in high jump". Jackson Sun. Gannett. Retrieved 2013-03-16. 
  32. ^ "Athlete Profile: Tora Harris". International Association of Athletics Federations. Retrieved 2013-03-16. 
  33. ^ "Tora Harris". USA Track & Field. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 

External links[edit]