Jun 27, 2014, 1:02 AM EDT
Olympic silver medalist Galen Rupp won his sixth straight U.S. title in the 10,000m in Sacramento, Calif., on Thursday night.
Rupp eased pass Chris Derrick with about 500m to go and crossed the finish line in what appeared a comfortable 28 minutes, 12.07 seconds. Derrick ended up 6.11 seconds behind for second.
Rupp, who broke his own American record in the 25-lap race with a 26:44.36 on May 30, said after his race Thursday that he would not contest the 5000m on Friday.
Kim Conley, a 2012 Olympian in the 5000m, won the women’s 10,000m despite pacing Jordan Hasay for the final two miles. Hasay finally made a pass on the final lap, but Conley summoned a final surge to retake the lead and finish in 32:02.07. Hasay followed in 32:03.28, and then 2012 Olympic finalist Amy Hastings.
Beijing Olympic bronze medalist Shalane Flanagan withdrew earlier Thursday but said she was healthy and preparing for a fall marathon on Twitter.
In other action, Olympic silver medalist Trey Hardee scored 4,441 points in the first five decathlon events. He leads by 368 points going into the final five events Friday. Olympic champion and world record holder Ashton Eaton was not entered, rather focusing on the 400m hurdles this season.
Olympic champions Allyson Felix, LaShawn Merritt and Sanya Richards-Ross all advanced to the semifinals of their sprints.
Felix tied for 14th overall in the 100m preliminary heats at 11.53 to be among 16 women advancing. Defending champion English Gardner was fastest at 11.3, followed by world 200m leader Tori Bowie in 11.33.
Merritt easily qualified second into the 400m semis at 45.19, behind Gil Roberts (45.16). Merritt is the only American capable of bettering 44 seconds.
“The 400′s always tough,” Merritt said in a video interview posted by RunnerSpace. “For me sometimes, the slower I run, the more tired I am.”
[WATCH LIVE: U.S. Championships, Friday at 10 pm ET]
Richards-Ross finished second in her heat in 52.39 to advance in the women’s 400m. She still feels pain in her right big toe, which she had surgery on last year and delayed her training to start this season. World Indoor champion Francena McCorory is the favorite.
“This is the best I’ve felt all year,” Richards-Ross said, according to The Associated Press. “I’m actually in more pain most of the time, but I’m getting through.”
Dentarius Locke, the third fastest American in the 100m this year, pulled up with an injury in his preliminary heat. The two faster Americans, World silver medalist Justin Gatlin and NCAA champion Trayvon Bromell, are not racing in Sacramento.
That leaves Olympic and World relay medalists Mike Rodgers, Charles Silmon and Ryan Bailey as the top men going into the semifinals and final Friday.
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