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Sprint king Justin Gatlin to headline Reebok Grand Prix

11 April 2006

Justin Gatlin, the reigning Olympic and World Champion at 100 meters, will headline the 2006 Reebok Grand Prix, organizers announced today. It will be the first time Gatlin, a Brooklyn native, has ever run outdoors in New York City.

“The first time I was in Icahn Stadium, I knew you could run sub-10 on that track,” said Gatlin in a media teleconference today, referring to his appearance at the grand opening of the stadium last spring. “It’s New York, hey. It’s where I was born, where I was raised. There’s not a lot of tracks I can call home, that have a home feel about them, and I think this can be one of those places for me.”

During the teleconference, Gatlin also said that he hopes to run 9.75 sometime this season. The world record, held by Asafa Powell of Jamaica, is 9.77. “If Asafa can do it, I can do it,” he said.

The Reebok Grand Prix, which in its debut last year was the first international competition held in the new Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island, is managed by Global Athletics & Marketing, Inc., and is the only outdoor East Coast meet that offers head-to-head competition among world-class athletes. Tickets, at $30 and $20, are now on sale at www.ReebokGrandPrix.com or by calling 1-877-TIX-TRAC. Group discounts are available. The event, which begins at 5:30 p.m., will be broadcast live on ESPN2 from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. ET, and is the fourth stop in USA Track & Field’s Visa Championship Series.

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