As US Track Trials Begin, Field Is Wide Open
Few household names are present for Oregon trials
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2008 12:23 PM CDT
Bernard Lagat, right, heads to the finish line to win the men's 1500 meters with a time of 3:35.14 during the Adidas Track Classic at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., Sunday May 18, 2008.    (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Before US track and field athletes can book their tickets to Beijing, they must prove themselves at the Olympic Trials in Oregon, which get under way today. With the field this year largely devoid of big names and the sport still shrouded in shame over doping scandals, the New York Sun takes a look at the likely stars and possible dark horses of a new generation.

Bernard Lagat, the Kenyan who became a US citizen in 2006, should dominate the distance events, while Sudanese refugee Lopez Lomong has a shot at the 800. Of the sprinters, Tyson Gay is favored for the 100; just-graduated Walter Dix and newcomer Travis Padgett will challenge Gay in the 200. Among the women, count on Athens silver medalist Allyson Felix to shine.