George Mason University will play host to a Grand Prix indoor track meet Feb. 14, organizers announced yesterday. Among the top athletes expected to compete are world champions Greg Foster and Jackie Joyner-Kersee.
Mobil, which is moving its corporate headquarters to Fairfax County, will sponsor the meet.
John Cook, George Mason's track coach and the meet director, said he plans to feature six events: the men's mile, with George Mason star and world champion Abdi Bile Abdi; the men's hurdles, with Foster; the women's hurdles, with Joyner-Kersee; the women's 400, with Valerie Brisco; the men's mile relay, in which Cook hopes to attract the six fastest teams in competition, and the pole vault, for which Cook is attempting to lure five top vaulters, including Billy Olson.
Bob Kersee, who coaches his wife, said Joyner-Kersee will cut back on her indoor schedule to prepare for the Seoul Olympics. He said she will compete in only six indoor meets during February, and not in the world indoor championships.
At a news conference yesterday, Kersee said his wife has a slight hip problem. "You don't want to be overprotective," he said. "But you don't want a minor injury to cost you a berth on the Olympic team."
Joyner-Kersee, who may try for a triple in the Olympics with the hurdles, long jump and heptathlon, will compete only in the hurdles at George Mason.
Foster, a two-time world champion whose victory this summer at Rome overcame disappointments in the indoor and Pan American championships, said he will not alter his indoor schedule. "I've had success in the past," he said. "I see no reason to change now."
The meet will be held in the field house and not in the 10,000-seat Patriot Center because the arena is too narrow for an indoor track.