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Top U.S. athletes ready to do battle

Several rare showdowns are expected to highlight the Mobil Outdoor Track and Field Championships Wednesday through Saturday at Downing Stadium on Randalls Island. The meet serves as the national championships for the United States.

For example, there will be two-time Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis against Leroy Burrell, ranked No. 1 in the world the past two years, in the men's 100-meter dash.

There will be Lewis, Burrell, top-ranked Michael Johnson, two-time world champion Calvin Smith and 1988 Olympic champion Joe DeLoach in the 200.

There will be Olympic gold medalist Steve Lewis against Olympic silver medalist Danny Everett in the men's 400.

There will be two-time world champion Greg Foster against former world record-holder Renaldo Nehemiah in the men's 110-meter high hurdles.

There will be Carl Lewis, unbeaten in 64 straight long-jump competitions over 10 years and winner of two Olympic golds, against his last conqueror, Larry Myricks, and top-ranked Mike Powell.

There will be Dave Johnson, ranked second in the world in the decathlon, against rapidly rising Dan O'Brien, ranked fourth.

There will be American record-holder Mary Slaney against PattiSue Plumer and Suzy Favor in the women's 1,500 meters.

And there will be two-time world cross-country champion Lynn Jennings against American record-holder Francie Larrieu-Smith in the women's 10,000 meters.

There also will be several other outstanding competitors, including Jackie Joyner-Kersee, the world record-holder in the heptathlon and American record-holder in the women's long jump, who will be heavily favored in both events despite struggling recently.

Dennis Mitchell, who has beaten Carl Lewis and Ben Johnson in Europe this season, also is in the 100, along with Smith and DeLoach.

American record-holder Johnny Gray, NCAA champion George Kersh and Olympian Mark Everett are entered in the men's 800. Joe Falcon, who ran the fastest mile in the world last year, will face American mile record-holder Steve Scott in the men's 1,500.

Danny Harris, ranked No. 1 in the world, heads the men's 400-meter intermediate hurdles field. Hollis Conway, the Olympic silver medalist, the world indoor champion and ranked No. 1 in the world, tops the men's high-jump entrants.

Mike Conley, the 1984 Olympic silver medalist and the world indoor record-holder, faces Kenny Harrison, ranked No. 1 in the world, in the men's triple jump.

Carlette Guidry, the NCAA champion in the women's 100 and 200, is entered in both races, with Evelyn Ashford, the 1984 Olympic gold medalist, also in the 100. World indoor champion Diane Dixon leads the women's 400 field.

Sandra Farmer-Patrick, the American record-holder, will meet NCAA champion Janeene Vickers in the women's 400 hurdles. Olympic champion Louise Ritter tops the women's high-jump field, and American record-holder Sheila Hudson leads the triple-jump entrants.

The first three finishers will qualify for U.S. teams for this year's World Championships, Pan Am Games, World University Games and U.S. Olympic Festival.

This is the first major meet to be held at Downing Stadium since 1966, when the national championships also were conducted there.