Wendy Vereen

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Wendy Vereen
Medal record
Women's athletics
Representing the  United States
World Championships
Silver medal – second place 1993 Stuttgart 4×100 m relay
World Indoor Championships
Gold medal – first place 1993 Toronto 1600 m relay
IAAF World Cup
Bronze medal – third place 1989 Barcelona 4×100 m relay

Wenda "Wendy" Vereen (born April 24, 1966) is an American former track and field sprinter who specialized in the 100 and 200-meter dashes. She was the top ranked national runner in high school in 1983 and 1984. She set personal records of 11.17 seconds for the 100 m and 22.63 seconds for the 200 m.

Her career was highlighted by three relay medals – a 4×100-meter relay silver medal at the 1993 World Championships in Athletics, a medley relay gold medal at the 1993 IAAF World Indoor Championships, and a bronze at the 1989 IAAF World Cup. She twice represented the United States individually, competing in the 200 m at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in 1993 and 1995.

Career[edit]

Vereen grew up in Trenton, New Jersey and took up track and field at high school at Trenton Central High School.[1] She won the 200 m in the under-17's section of the 1982 USATF National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships and was the American junior champion over 200 m in 1983 – her winning time of 23.22 seconds went unbettered until 1999.[2][3] She was placed as number one in the 100 m and 200 m for high school girls in both 1983 and 1984 by Track & Field News.[4][5] Her run of 11.17 seconds for the 100 m in 1983 placed her second on the all-time American high school lists after Chandra Cheeseborough.[6]

Being one of the top ranked American high school sprinters, she gained an athletic scholarship to attend Morgan State University. While there she four school records across individual and relay events. Among the eight NCAA All-American honors she earned while competing for the Morgan State Bears, she was runner-up in the 4×100-meter relay at the NCAA Women's Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships in 1986 (future Olympic champion Rochelle Stevens was also part of the team). Vereen was named as a relay alternate for the 1984 American Olympic team but ultimately did not compete.[1]

She was a frequent finalist at national level from the late 1980s onwards. At the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships 200 m she was seventh in 1986, sixth in 1989, and eighth in 1990. At the 1993 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships she was fourth in the 100 m (a career high national placing) and fifth in the 200 m. The following year she came eighth in 100 m and was again fifth over 200 m.[7][8] She gained her first international medal at the 1989 IAAF World Cup, anchoring a 4 × 100 m relay team of Sheila Echols, Esther Jones and Dawn Sowell to a bronze medal behind East Germany and the Soviet Union.[9]

Vereen's professional track career reached its peak in 1993. She achieved a best of 23.07 seconds indoors and gained her first individual international selection for the United States. At the 1993 IAAF World Indoor Championships she came fifth in the 200 m and also won a gold medal with the 1600-meter medley relay event. The team's winning time of 3:45.90 minutes was a world record for the non-IAAF-standard distance.[10] She was chosen for the 4 × 100 m relay team for the 1993 World Championships in Athletics and the quartet of Michelle Finn-Burrell, Gwen Torrence, Vereen, and Gail Devers completed the race in 41.49 seconds. This was a new championship record, although the Russian women's team finished with the same time. Further analysis revealed the Russians as the winners and Vereen was awarded a silver medal with the American team.[11][12] Vereen closed the season with a seventh-place finish in the 100 m at the 1993 IAAF Grand Prix Final.[13]

Vereen had one further international performance, running in the 200 m heats at the 1995 IAAF World Indoor Championships, but was disqualified for a lane infringement.[13] Her final top level appearance at the national level came at the 1996 United States Olympic Trials where she was a quarter-finalist in the 200 m.[14]

Following the end of her athletic career, she settled in Indiana and was inducted into the Morgan State University Hall of Fame in 2014. Outside of track, she worked for the Department of Workforce Development, as well as taking up coaching with the Indiana Racing Cheetah Track Club. She married Troy Christopher and the pair had a daughter, Camille, around 2000.[1]

International competitions[edit]

Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
1989 IAAF World Cup Barcelona, Spain 3rd 4 × 100 m relay 42.83
1993 World Indoor Championships Toronto, Canada 5th 200 m 23.34
1st 1600 m relay 3:45.90
World Championships Stuttgart, Germany 2nd 4 × 100 m relay 41.49
1995 World Indoor Championships Barcelona, Spain DQ (heats) 200 m Lane infringement

Personal records[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Wendy Vereen. Morgan State Bears. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  2. ^ Past Winners By Event USATF National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships. USATF. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  3. ^ USA Junior Outdoor Track & Field Champions. USATF. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  4. ^ High School All-America Teams — Girls 100 Meters. Track & Field News. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  5. ^ High School All-America Teams — Girls 200 Meters. Track & Field News. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  6. ^ Shepard, Jack (2015-08-17). HIGH SCHOOL ALL-TIME TOP 10s - Women. Track & Field News. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  7. ^ History of US Nationals Results: 100 Meters - Women. Track & Field News. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  8. ^ History of US Nationals Results: 200 Meters - Women. Track & Field Newss. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  9. ^ 1st IAAF/VTB BANK CONTINENTAL CUP IAAF STATISTICS HANDBOOK SPLIT 2010. IAAF. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  10. ^ World Indoor Records—Women. Track & Field News. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  11. ^ Main > Women, 4×100 m > World Championships Records Progression. Track and Field Brinkster. Retrieved on 2015-07-07.
  12. ^ Litsky, Frank (1983-08-23). TRACK & FIELD; U.S. Relay Teams Romp to Three Titles. The New York Times. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  13. ^ a b Wendy Vereen Honours. IAAF. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.
  14. ^ 1996 Olympic Team Trials - Women. USATF. Retrieved on 2015-09-19.

External links[edit]