Boston Recap: U.S. Leaders for Ajee Wilson in 800 (1:59.72) and Ben True in 1500 (3:36.05), Sub-13 for Dejen Gebremeskel & HS Junior Kate Murphy (4:07.21, #3 A-T) Runs Faster Than the Pros

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By Jonathan Gault
June 17, 2016

SOMERVILLE, Mass. — The Olympic Trials open in exactly two weeks, and for the Americans competing at the inaugural adidas Boost Boston Games at Dilboy Stadiums on Friday night, there were some good signs and some bad ones. Ajee Wilson running a U.S. leader of 1:59.72 in the 800 after a couple of subpar Diamond League races? Good. Ben True running a U.S. leader of 3:36.05 in the 1500, his third-best event? Very good. Robby Andrews taking just seventh in that same race in 3:37.52? Not so good.

While those results suggest different things, ultimately what matters is how those athletes run from July 1-10 in Eugene. Perform well and any past failures are forgiven. Miss out on the team and any previous success is cold comfort.

Friday’s meet also saw a sub-13:00 in the men’s 5,000 (Dejen Gebremeskel won it in 12:59.89, the first time anyone had broken 13:00 on a U.S. track other than Hayward Field) and the third-fastest high school girls’ 1500 of all-time as junior Kate Murphy of Lake Braddock (Va.) High School ran 4:07.21 (only Mary Cain and Alexa Efraimson have run faster) — a time that would have won the professional 1500.

Meet recap with interviews below. The two-day meet concludes with the street portion on Saturday evening on Boston Common.

Full results

MB: Official 2016 adidas Boost Boston Games Discussion Thread

Women’s 800: Ajee Wilson gets back on track
Wilson felt good about her fitness going into this one and the result bore that out as she went wire-to-wire in this one, holding off Molly Ludlow in the home stretch, 1:59.72 to 1:59.93. This was a big result for Ludlow as well (her previous SB was 2:00.44) as the amount of U.S. women to have broken 2:00 in 2016 tripled (previously Chrishuna Williams was the only one to have gone under; Brenda Martinez also got under later on Friday night in Vancouver).

PLACEATHLETERESULT400M800M
1USAAjee Wilson1:59.72
59.44
Pl: 1
1:59.72
1:00.29
Pl: 1
2USAMolly Ludlow1:59.93
59.66
Pl: 4
1:59.93
1:00.28
Pl: 2 2
3USAHeather Kampf2:00.55
59.94
Pl: 6
2:00.55
1:00.62
Pl: 3 3
4JAMNatoya Goule2:00.73
59.48
Pl: 2
2:00.73
1:01.25
Pl: 4 -2
5USACharlene Lipsey2:01.27
59.64
Pl: 3
2:01.27
1:01.64
Pl: 5 -2
6USATreniere Moser2:01.94
1:00.29
Pl: 9
2:01.94
1:01.66
Pl: 6 3
7USAMorgan Uceny2:02.00
59.84
Pl: 5
2:02.00
1:02.16
Pl: 7 -2
8USALaTavia Thomas2:02.49
1:00.09
Pl: 7
2:02.49
1:02.40
Pl: 8 -1
9USAMegan Krumpoch2:02.58
1:00.15
Pl: 8
2:02.58
1:02.44
Pl: 9 -1
10USAAnna Willard2:05.21
1:00.41
Pl: 10
2:05.21
1:04.80
Pl: 10

Quick Take #1: Ajee Wilson addresses Caster Semenya’s dominance
Wilson’s most interesting comments this week actually came at Thursday’s press conference, where I asked her about her thoughts on the state of the women’s 800 and Caster Semenya’s dominance after the 2015 CAS decision saying that she could compete without suppressing her testosterone levels.

“I think it’s really it’s one of those hard things,” Wilson said. “I don’t think anyone really knows what the right answer is. I think the fact that a conversation is being had now is all that we can do. At the same time, I can’t wait around for any of that. My goal is to first make the U.S. team and then compete. Whoever toes the line, run as fast as I need to in order to win. There’s only so much you can do.”

I also asked whether it’s a topic that comes up among the pros at meets on the circuit. In Wilson’s experience, it’s not.

“Oddly enough, no. You would think so, but we’re all kind just focusing on what we can do.”

MB: Ajee Wilson 1:59.72!

Quick Take #2: Molly Ludlow has put a lot of emphasis on strength work to prevent another 4th-place finish at the Trials
Ludlow said her last 100 has been a problem for her this season but she felt that aspect of her race was a lot better tonight and said she’s “right where I need to be” because she was able to break 2:00 even though she only went out in 59.66.

Ludlow was fourth at the Trials four years ago (missing out by .22) and fourth last year (missing out by .04 even though she later was placed on the team due to Wilson’s injury). She said she’s obviously trying to avoid that fate again in 2016 and feels good about her strength. Ludlow trains more like a 1500 runner and she believes that will help her more at the Trials, which will have three “brutal” rounds.

HS Girls’ Dream 1500: Kate Murphy moves to #3 all-time among HSers
Murphy and NXN champ Katie Rainsberger, who ran 4:12 in Portland on Sunday, had separated by halfway and at the bell they had a massive four-second lead on the field with Murphy about seven meters up on Rainsberger. But Murphy still had a ton left in the tank and absolutely crushed Rainsberger over the final 400, closing in a phenomenal 62.05 to run 4:07.21. A simply incredible run for Murphy, who still has a year of high school left.

MB: High schooler Kate Murphy crushes the Olympic trial standard 4:07!!

PLACEATHLETERESULT300M700M1100M1500M
1USAKate Murphy4:07.21
50.29
Pl: 1
1:58.19
1:07.91
Pl: 1
3:05.16
1:06.97
Pl: 1
4:07.21
1:02.05
Pl: 1
2USAKatie Rainsberger4:14.12
50.46
Pl: 2
1:58.76
1:08.30
Pl: 2
3:05.93
1:07.18
Pl: 2
4:14.12
1:08.19
Pl: 2
3USAElla Donaghu4:18.07
50.71
Pl: 3
2:00.29
1:09.58
Pl: 3
3:11.39
1:11.10
Pl: 5 -2
4:18.07
1:06.68
Pl: 3 2
4USANevada Mareno4:18.48
50.91
Pl: 4
2:00.53
1:09.62
Pl: 4
3:09.57
1:09.05
Pl: 3 1
4:18.48
1:08.91
Pl: 4 -1
5USACaitlin Collier4:19.05
51.19
Pl: 6
2:00.78
1:09.60
Pl: 5 1
3:10.90
1:10.12
Pl: 4 1
4:19.05
1:08.15
Pl: 5 -1
6USAMadie Boreman4:23.77
51.02
Pl: 5
2:01.29
1:10.27
Pl: 6 -1
3:12.27
1:10.98
Pl: 6
4:23.77
1:11.51
Pl: 6
7USABethany Hasz4:24.10
51.64
Pl: 8
2:03.53
1:11.90
Pl: 9 -1
3:16.35
1:12.82
Pl: 9
4:24.10
1:07.76
Pl: 7 2
8USAMegan Hasz4:29.39
51.45
Pl: 7
2:03.38
1:11.94
Pl: 8 -1
3:16.28
1:12.90
Pl: 8
4:29.39
1:13.11
Pl: 8
9USAMargie Cullen4:30.80
51.75
Pl: 9
2:03.16
1:11.41
Pl: 7 2
3:16.03
1:12.88
Pl: 7
4:30.80
1:14.78
Pl: 9 -2
DNSUSABriana Gess

Quick Take #1: Some context for Murphy’s sensational run

Murphy earned her title belt with an epic performance

Murphy earned her title belt with an epic performance

Murphy’s run was not as fast as Efraimson’s 4:03 last year or Cain’s 4:04 in 2013, but was still a phenomenal performance in and of itself. Remember, until Cain came along in 2013, the high school record was 4:14.50 by Jordan Hasay in 2008. Seven women have surpassed that mark since Hasay ran it, four in 2016 alone, but Murphy’s run was in a different ballpark from what any other high schooler has accomplished this year. Christina Aragon ran 4:09.27 on Sunday in Portland, but Murphy was over two seconds faster tonight, but she was only on 4:12 pace at the bell before her crazy last 400.

Here’s what else she did tonight:
-Ran faster than the winner of the professional 1500 (Cory McGee, 4:08.65) and closed way faster (62.05 vs. 65.58)
-Ran way under the Olympic Trials standard (4:09.50) and came within .21 of the Olympic standard

Amazingly, Murphy did not even win her state meet (she was second in the 800, running 2:06.70) but after racing a decent amount this spring, she took two weeks to really rest up and peak for this race and was rewarded with a massive PR. She said that losing at states really helped keep her humble and motivated moving forward.

“Losing, it helps you so much,” Murphy said. “I don’t think people realize how important it is.” Talking about going for the Olympic Trials standard she said, “Coming in I knew I needed to get it done. … I knew it was going to go out hard. When it went out I felt really good and I knew this is one of my last shots at getting it so I was just trying to be really brave. I pushed the pace because I didn’t want to have to come through with one lap [to go] and close really really really hard. I just felt really good.”

Boys’ Dream Mile: Salisbury uses big kick to run down Thomas Ratcliffe
Ratcliffe (Concord-Carlisle HS, Mass.), who ran 4:01.50 two weeks ago, wanted another sub-4:00 here. And even after he came through a few seconds slow (2:04.14 at 809), he kept pushing and by the bell he had a lead of 10 meters at the bell (3:05.14). Sub-4:00 was out the window; the question now was whether Ratcliffe could hold on for the win.

He tried, valiantly, but in the end big kicker Jack Salisbury (La Salle Academy, R.I.) came through for victory in 4:04.20, using a big kick to run down Ratcliffe and several others over the final 100 (Salisbury’s 57.64 final 400 was way better than anyone else in the field).

PLACEATHLETERESULT4098091209MILE
1USAJack Salisbury4:04.20
1:02.67
Pl: 3
2:04.74
1:02.07
Pl: 3
3:06.56
1:01.82
Pl: 4 -1
4:04.20
57.64
Pl: 1 3
2USAThomas Ratcliffe4:04.41
1:02.38
Pl: 2
2:04.14
1:01.77
Pl: 2
3:05.14
1:01.00
Pl: 1 1
4:04.41
59.27
Pl: 2 -1
3USARyan Schweizer4:05.10
1:03.03
Pl: 7
2:05.69
1:02.67
Pl: 7
3:06.70
1:01.01
Pl: 5 2
4:05.10
58.40
Pl: 3 2
4USAJaret Carpenter4:05.73
1:03.22
Pl: 9
2:05.01
1:01.79
Pl: 4 5
3:06.90
1:01.90
Pl: 6 -2
4:05.73
58.83
Pl: 4 2
5USAEduardo Herrera4:06.38
1:02.80
Pl: 5
2:05.04
1:02.24
Pl: 5
3:06.51
1:01.48
Pl: 3 2
4:06.38
59.87
Pl: 5 -2
6USAJoseph Bistritz4:06.70
1:02.86
Pl: 6
2:05.49
1:02.64
Pl: 6
3:06.45
1:00.96
Pl: 2 4
4:06.70
1:00.25
Pl: 6 -4
7USAPatrick Parker4:06.72
1:03.41
Pl: 11
2:05.87
1:02.46
Pl: 9 2
3:07.05
1:01.19
Pl: 7 2
4:06.72
59.68
Pl: 7
8USAGavin Gaynor4:07.17
1:03.15
Pl: 8
2:06.09
1:02.95
Pl: 11 -3
3:07.93
1:01.84
Pl: 8 3
4:07.17
59.24
Pl: 8
9USADalton Hengst4:18.49
1:03.30
Pl: 10
2:05.73
1:02.43
Pl: 8 2
3:08.19
1:02.46
Pl: 9 -1
4:18.49
1:10.31
Pl: 9
10USAJack Yearian4:20.70
1:02.75
Pl: 4
2:05.89
1:03.15
Pl: 10 -6
3:10.06
1:04.18
Pl: 10
4:20.70
1:10.64
Pl: 10
DNFUSAEli Decker
1:02.28
Pl: 1
2:03.77
1:01.49
Pl: 1

Quick Take #1: Salisbury made up for his last-place finish in 2015 but was pleased most of all to PR
Salisbury was dead last in this race last year, running 4:23, but totally turned it around today, going out on top in his final high school race. With 200 to go, he thought he was too far back to win but was confident he could pick off a few runners in the home straight. But once he started moving on the outside, he began passing guys quickly and with 80 to go realized he could win the whole thing. Salisbury will attend Georgetown in the fall.

Women’s 1500: Cory McGee takes it as Mary Cain finishes 3rd in 4:10.84 sb
This was a two-woman battle at the bell as McGee and Rachel Schneider had separated from the field, and Schneider ran on McGee’s shoulder for most of the final lap. But she never had enough to move by McGee and that’s how things finished, McGee first in 4:08.65 and Schneider second in 4:09.29. Mary Cain was third in 4:10.84 but was never in contention for the win over the final 400.

PLACEATHLETERESULT30070011001500
1USACory McGee4:08.65
48.14
Pl: 5
1:57.03
1:08.89
Pl: 3 2
3:03.07
1:06.05
Pl: 1 2
4:08.65
1:05.58
Pl: 1
2USARachel Schneider4:09.29
47.34
Pl: 2
1:56.76
1:09.42
Pl: 2
3:03.28
1:06.53
Pl: 2
4:09.29
1:06.02
Pl: 2
3USAMary Cain4:10.84
47.81
Pl: 3
1:57.13
1:09.33
Pl: 4 -1
3:04.01
1:06.88
Pl: 3 1
4:10.84
1:06.84
Pl: 3
4USAEmily Lipari4:12.31
48.33
Pl: 6
1:57.55
1:09.22
Pl: 6
3:05.65
1:08.11
Pl: 5 1
4:12.31
1:06.66
Pl: 4 1
5USAGreta Feldman4:14.07
47.95
Pl: 4
1:57.31
1:09.36
Pl: 5 -1
3:05.12
1:07.82
Pl: 4 1
4:14.07
1:08.96
Pl: 5 -1
6USAPaige Kouba4:18.33
48.57
Pl: 8
1:58.31
1:09.74
Pl: 8
3:08.65
1:10.34
Pl: 6 2
4:18.33
1:09.68
Pl: 6
7USAAngel Piccirillo4:29.75
48.44
Pl: 7
1:57.85
1:09.42
Pl: 7
3:09.89
1:12.05
Pl: 7
4:29.75
1:19.87
Pl: 7
DNFUSAMegan Krumpoch
46.66
Pl: 1
1:55.64
1:08.98
Pl: 1

Quick Take #1: McGee doesn’t have the Olympic standard but is confident she will get it at the Trials
McGee was pleased with her result tonight (it was her second-fastest 1500 ever) but admitted that she wanted to run faster as she still doesn’t have the Olympic standard of 4:07.00.

McGee pointed out that she’s made three straight USA finals, was right there with 200 to go in two of them (she was 3rd in ’13, 7th in ’14 and 11th last year) and feels even stronger this year. The only problem? She still doesn’t have the standard, and the 1500 is an event where a lot of women (14) already have it, which means there won’t be many athletes looking to push the pace. Still, McGee expects that either the semi or final in Eugene will go quick enough for her to get the time, and if she does, she likes her chances.

“I would never count myself out,” McGee said. “I know that there’s a good chance…I have a lot of faith in myself.”

Quick Take #2: A small step in the right direction for Mary Cain
Cain, like McGee, doesn’t have the Olympic standard, and she’s unlikely to make the team for Rio. Compared to the Cain of 2013/2014, this result wasn’t much, but for the new Mary Cain, it was solid progress as she improved on her SB of 4:12.62 by running 4:10.84. That’s over four seconds faster than she ran heading into USAs last year, where she placed 8th in the final. Cain still has plenty of work to do — she was totally outclassed by McGee and Schneider over the final 600, neither of whom are close to locks for the Olympics — but she’s moving in the right direction. Cain declined to talk in the mixed zone as she had to do a post-race workout.

Men’s 400: Wayde van Niekerk dominates
Van Niekerk was the class of this field on paper and ran like it, clocking 44.28 to win by .59 over Trinidad & Tobago’s Machel Cedenio. If van Niekerk, LaShawn Merritt and Kirani James continue the way they’ve been going this year, the Olympic final could be even better than the historically fast World Champs final in Beijing last year.

PLACEATHLETERESULT
1RSAWayde Van Niekerk44.28
2TTOMachel Cedenio44.87
3USADavid Verburg44.98
4USATony Mcquay45.51
5EGYAnas Beshr45.76
6USACalvin Smith45.78
7TTORenny Quow46.77

Women’s 400: Francena McCorory takes it in 50.46

PLACEATHLETERESULT
1USAFrancena Mccorory50.46
2USACarly Muscaro51.66
3JAMAnastasia Le-Roy52.01
4USAAutumne Franklin52.39
5USAKendall Baisden52.84
6RSAJustine Palframan53.17

Men’s 1500: Collins Cheboi edges Nick Willis as Ben True runs U.S.-leading 3:36.05
From an entertainment perspective, this was the race of the night and the results leave a lot to digest. Kenyan 3:30 man Collins Cheboi ran in front for the first 1100 but Willis took over at the bell (2:40.87) after consecutive 59-second laps and upped the tempo. True, stepping down in distance, moved up into fourth on the backstretch behind Kiwi Hamish Carson; Robby Andrews was in fifth.

It was still tight up front coming off the final turn with Willis in front, and he fought hard to hold onto the lead down the stretch but could not hold off Cheboi, who nipped him in the final meters to win in 3:35.82 to Willis’ 3:35.95. The big surprise was True, however, who hung on bravely for third in 3:36.05, a big pb and a U.S. leader. Andrews was well-positioned with 200 to go and looked ready to turn on his patented kick but had nothing over the final 200, fading to seventh in 3:37.52.

MB: Mac Fleet: 3:51, Ben True: 3:36, Will Leer 3:58. WHAT?!?!?!
*MB: Robby Andrews 7th in Boost Boston 1,500; smoked by Ben True 

PLACEATHLETERESULT30070011001500
1KENCollins Cheboi3:35.82
41.40
Pl: 1
1:41.05
59.65
Pl: 1
2:40.97
59.93
Pl: 2 -1
3:35.82
54.85
Pl: 1 1
2NZLNick Willis3:35.95
41.62
Pl: 2
1:41.28
59.66
Pl: 2
2:40.87
59.60
Pl: 1 1
3:35.95
55.09
Pl: 2 -1
3USABen True3:36.05
43.20
Pl: 12
1:42.84
59.65
Pl: 11 1
2:41.80
58.96
Pl: 6 5
3:36.05
54.26
Pl: 3 3
4NZLHamish Carson3:36.53
41.84
Pl: 3
1:41.49
59.65
Pl: 3
2:41.06
59.57
Pl: 3
3:36.53
55.48
Pl: 4 -1
5GBRJake Wightman3:36.64
42.67
Pl: 8
1:42.44
59.78
Pl: 7 1
2:42.24
59.80
Pl: 10 -3
3:36.64
54.41
Pl: 5 5
6NZLJulian Matthews3:37.36
43.05
Pl: 11
1:42.73
59.69
Pl: 10 1
2:41.92
59.19
Pl: 7 3
3:37.36
55.44
Pl: 6 1
7USARobby Andrews3:37.52
42.02
Pl: 4
1:41.71
59.69
Pl: 4
2:41.73
1:00.02
Pl: 5 -1
3:37.52
55.79
Pl: 7 -2
8CANNate Brannen3:37.55
42.85
Pl: 9
1:42.70
59.86
Pl: 9
2:41.99
59.30
Pl: 8 1
3:37.55
55.56
Pl: 8
9GBRLee Emanuel3:38.04
42.56
Pl: 7
1:42.15
59.59
Pl: 6 1
2:41.52
59.37
Pl: 4 2
3:38.04
56.52
Pl: 9 -5
10USAPeter Callahan3:39.14
42.17
Pl: 5
1:41.98
59.81
Pl: 5
2:42.11
1:00.14
Pl: 9 -4
3:39.14
57.03
Pl: 10 -1
11USACristian Soratos3:39.33
42.94
Pl: 10
1:43.05
1:00.12
Pl: 12 -2
2:42.63
59.58
Pl: 13 -1
3:39.33
56.70
Pl: 11 2
12USADaniel Winn3:40.54
42.42
Pl: 6
1:42.51
1:00.10
Pl: 8 -2
2:42.60
1:00.10
Pl: 12 -4
3:40.54
57.94
Pl: 12
13USALex Williams3:40.95
43.45
Pl: 14
1:43.54
1:00.09
Pl: 14
2:42.46
58.93
Pl: 11 3
3:40.95
58.49
Pl: 13 -2
14AUSCraig Huffer3:41.73
43.89
Pl: 18
1:44.14
1:00.25
Pl: 16 2
2:42.89
58.75
Pl: 14 2
3:41.73
58.85
Pl: 14
15NZLEric Speakman3:43.48
43.26
Pl: 13
1:43.31
1:00.05
Pl: 13
2:42.90
59.60
Pl: 15 -2
3:43.48
1:00.58
Pl: 15
16USAGarrett O’Toole3:51.51
43.86
Pl: 17
1:44.43
1:00.58
Pl: 17
2:43.62
59.20
Pl: 16 1
3:51.51
1:07.90
Pl: 16
17USAMac Fleet3:51.88
43.54
Pl: 15
1:43.95
1:00.41
Pl: 15
2:45.66
1:01.71
Pl: 17 -2
3:51.88
1:06.23
Pl: 17
18USAWilliam Leer3:58.82
43.71
Pl: 16
1:44.89
1:01.18
Pl: 18 -2
2:50.64
1:05.75
Pl: 18
3:58.82
1:08.19
Pl: 18

Quick Take #1: Collins Cheboi was happy to win but is realistic and admitted that his chances of making the Kenyan Olympic team aren’t very good
Kenya has three outstanding 1500 runners in Asbel Kiprop, Elijah Manangoi and Silas Kiplagat (1-2-5 at Worlds last year) and Cheboi, who was only 14th in the Rome Diamond League on June 2, admitted that it’s going to be very difficult for him to qualify for Rio.

Quick Take #2: Ben True was very surprised to run so fast as his speed work had been awful this week
True ran an all-out 300 on Tuesday and only managed 44 seconds. The day before the race, he did some 200’s in 30 and his legs still felt terrible but once it came time for the real test, True passed with flying colors.

“I guess it’s a lot easier running with people,” True said. “Getting in the race atmosphere, I felt good.”

The time was officially a four-second pb for True, though he did run a 3:37 1500 time trial two years ago. True battled a hip injury over the winter and his Achilles flared up earlier this week and though he’s “able to run everything I need to run right now,” he admits that the injury still nags him and that it’s something he’s just going to have to treat carefully for the rest of the season.

True didn’t want to project this 1500 result to the 5k/10k but said that it’s a good sign that the training is working — as someone who trains alone and whose coach (Tim Broe) only sees him about twice a month, races are by far the biggest indicators of his current fitness level. True’s philosophy is strength = speed and he did even more strength work than usual at the start of the year (before getting injured) to prep for the NYC Half (which the injury caused him to miss). That seems to be working as he not only ran fast tonight, but closed in 54.26 for the last lap — faster than anyone else in the field.

True said that the Trials will be tough with big kickers like Ryan Hill in the field, but said the faster it is, the more it favors him.

MB: Who is the Dartmouth GOAT? Ben True?

Quick Take #3: Robby Andrews isn’t worried by his 7th-place finish
Andrews was in good spirits despite the result tonight as he put himself in good position but just didn’t have it the final 200. Andrews said that training has been going very well but it takes him a few races to get his legs under him — this was only his second race this spring (he ran 1:47.22 at Oxy in May) and first 1500. With three rounds at the Trials, Andrews wants to be as fresh as possible entering that meet, thus the limited racing schedule this spring.

Obviously Andrews would have liked to have run better tonight, but 3:37.52 isn’t anything to panic about — it’s actually the #4 time by an American this year, and all the guys in front of him either don’t have the Olympic standard (Clayton Murphy, Colby Alexander, Johnny Gregorek) or won’t be running the 1500 at the Trials (True).

At the Trials, it’s possible that Andrews will only have to beat one person to make the team as the only four people with the standard may be Centrowitz, Blankenship, Andrews and Manzano. Talk about anti-climatic. And USATF will run three rounds to get us to that lack of drama?

US Runners with the Olympic Standard
3:30.40 1 1 Matthew CENTROWITZ – injured and only ran 1:37/3:41 in Portland.
3:32.97 2 2 Evan JAGER – unlikely to run 1500.
3:34.13 3 3 Garrett HEATH – We’d think he’d do the 5000 but might he try both? He’d never have to run twice in the same day but he’d heave to runthe 1st 2 rounds of the 1500, then the 5k final and then the 1500 final on four straight days and all of that after running a 5000 prelim.
3:34.54 4 4 Kyle MERBER – injured hasn’t raced outdoors.
3:35.36 5 5 Cory LESLIE – we imagine he’ll go for the steeple.
3:35.48 6 6 Ben BLANKENSHIP – Ran 3:53 mile at Pre.
3:35.52 7 7 Robby ANDREWS
3:36.16 9 8 Leonel MANZANO – hasn’t broken 4:00 in  mile or 1500 equivalent this year.

LRC Who’s In? Who’s On The Bubble? 2016 US Men’s Olympic Trials Descending Order Lists

LRC Who’s In? Who’s On The Bubble? 2016 US Women’s Olympic Trials Descending Order Lists

MB: Robby Andrews 7th in Boost Boston 1,500; smoked by Ben True 

Men’s 5,000: Dejen Gebremeskel and Hagos Gebrhiwet position themselves well for Olympic selection
Ethiopia picks its 5,000 team strictly on time and Gebremeskel and Gebrhiwet skipped this week’s Diamond League event in Stockholm to chase a fast time here instead. The decision paid off as the two worked together and moved up to #2 and #3 among Ethiopians this year as Gebremeskel clocked 12:59.89 to Gebrhiwet’s 13:00.20 (Stockholm was won in just 13:03). With no more Diamond League events left until Olympic entries are due next month, the two men look to have booked their places in Rio unless there’s a last-ditch sub-13:00 attempt they don’t know about.

PLACEATHLETERESULT20060010001400180022002600300034003800420046005000
1ETHDejen Gebremeskel12:59.89
30.03
Pl: 2
1:33.12
1:03.10
Pl: 2
2:35.62
1:02.50
Pl: 3 -1
3:39.33
1:03.72
Pl: 3
4:41.30
1:01.97
Pl: 2 1
5:44.52
1:03.22
Pl: 1 1
6:48.00
1:03.49
Pl: 2 -1
7:50.98
1:02.98
Pl: 1 1
8:54.10
1:03.12
Pl: 2 -1
9:57.03
1:02.94
Pl: 1 1
11:00.18
1:03.16
Pl: 2 -1
12:02.42
1:02.24
Pl: 2
12:59.89
57.48
Pl: 1 1
2ETHHagos Gebrhiwet13:00.20
30.25
Pl: 3
1:33.38
1:03.13
Pl: 3
2:35.36
1:01.98
Pl: 2 1
3:39.08
1:03.73
Pl: 2
4:41.08
1:02.00
Pl: 1 1
5:44.77
1:03.69
Pl: 2 -1
6:47.80
1:03.04
Pl: 1 1
7:51.18
1:03.38
Pl: 2 -1
8:53.88
1:02.71
Pl: 1 1
9:57.26
1:03.39
Pl: 2 -1
10:59.96
1:02.70
Pl: 1 1
12:02.20
1:02.24
Pl: 1
13:00.20
58.01
Pl: 2 -1
3ETHDebeli Gezmu13:33.03
30.47
Pl: 4
1:33.62
1:03.16
Pl: 4
2:35.89
1:02.28
Pl: 4
3:39.52
1:03.63
Pl: 4
4:41.54
1:02.03
Pl: 3 1
5:45.60
1:04.06
Pl: 3
6:51.50
1:05.90
Pl: 3
7:58.38
1:06.88
Pl: 3
9:04.39
1:06.02
Pl: 3
10:11.35
1:06.96
Pl: 3
11:19.80
1:08.45
Pl: 3
12:27.85
1:08.06
Pl: 3
13:33.03
1:05.19
Pl: 3
DNFGBRChris O’Hare
29.79
Pl: 1
1:32.84
1:03.06
Pl: 1
2:35.15
1:02.31
Pl: 1
3:38.86
1:03.71
Pl: 1

Quick Take #1: Ethiopia needs to have Olympic Trials in the distances
Ethiopia’s Olympic marathon team selection was questionable (Lelisa Desisa and Kenenisa Bekele were left off) but the federation at least has an excuse as an Ethiopian marathon trials would be difficult to coordinate. They have no such excuse for the track events, particularly the 5,000, where a trials is the only fair way to pick the team (Gebremeskel agreed that a trials would be the “best” way).

Consider: of the following guys, only three can run the 5,000 in Rio.
Muktar Edris (12:59.43 sb): world leader won first two DL 5ks but has slipped recently
Dejen Gebremeskel (12:59.89 sb): Olympic silver in 2012
Hagos Gebrhiwet (13:00.20 sb): silver at last two World Champs, won in Oslo last week
Abadi Embaye (13:02.49 sb): “17-year-old” has finished 4th, 5th, and 7th in 3 DL 5k’s
Ibrahim Jeilan (13:03.22 sb): better event is likely 10k (where he was world champ in ’11) but he did win Stockholm on Thursday
Yomif Kejelcha (13:03.29 sb): world indoor 3k champ

When you have that many studs, there simply has to be a trials race. A trials doesn’t guarantee the strongest possible team at the Olympics (no method can do that) but picking the top three finishers from a championship-style race is a much better indicator of Olympic potential (not to mention fairer) than how fast you can run in a glorified time trial like tonight.

Quick Take #2: This “race” was a farce
There were only three guys in this race, but one of them (Debeli Gezmu) was dropped by halfway, leaving Gebremeskel and Gebrhiwet by themselves for the final 2500m. Admittedly, this was as exciting as a three-man 5,000 can be, with a pulsating finish, two men kicking side-by-side down the home stretch to break 13:00. But the crowd, which was invited onto the track to watch from the outer lanes for this race, deserves better. There were essentially zero tactics on display as Gebremeskel and Gebrhiwet were content to work together for the first 11.5 laps against their common enemy: the clock.

Again, the Ethiopian federation is to blame. Rather than race a competitive field in Stockholm, Gebremeskel and Gebrhiwet chose to come here and stage their own time trial (their agent is Mark Wetmore, the meet director) and their decision totally paid off. Gebremeskel and Gebrhiwet are not at fault; they were simply giving themselves the best chance to make the Olympic team, and they likely did just that. But when the Olympic selection process is wholly based on time, you get glorified time trials like this, and that’s not good for the sport.

Women’s 5,000: Meseret Defar wins but doesn’t run fast (15:06); Marielle Hall top American in 15:13 as Jo Pavey’s Olympic hopes dim

Defar, the 2004 and 2012 Olympic champion, was on her own for most of this one but didn’t run nearly as fast as she wanted to as the calf injuries she had battled in the leadup to the race manifest themselves as calf cramps during the race. Twelve Ethiopian women have run faster than Defar outdoors this year, and the top three (Almaz Ayana, 14:12, Senbere Teferi, 14:35 and Etenesh Diro Neda, 14:37) are well ahead of Defar’s 15:06.96 clocking from tonight. Defar is a legend of the sport, but she’ll have to show much more than this to even be selected to Rio (she doesn’t have the 10,000 standard either). Hall battled Ethiopian Azmera Gebru for second but was ultimately much stronger over the final three laps and pulled away to finish in 15:13.66, well ahead of Gebru, who was later caught and passed by eventual third placer Abbey D’Agostino (15:22.29).

PLACEATHLETERESULT20060010001400180022002600300034003800420046005000
1ETHMeseret Defar15:06.96
34.36
Pl: 1
1:47.48
1:13.12
Pl: 1
3:00.26
1:12.78
Pl: 1
4:12.52
1:12.27
Pl: 1
5:25.00
1:12.48
Pl: 1
6:37.99
1:13.00
Pl: 1
7:50.77
1:12.78
Pl: 1
9:03.61
1:12.84
Pl: 1
10:17.73
1:14.12
Pl: 1
11:32.23
1:14.50
Pl: 1
12:45.77
1:13.55
Pl: 1
13:58.27
1:12.51
Pl: 1
15:06.96
1:08.69
Pl: 1
2USAMarielle Hall15:13.66
36.64
Pl: 9
1:51.13
1:14.50
Pl: 6 3
3:03.93
1:12.80
Pl: 4 2
4:17.51
1:13.59
Pl: 4
5:30.09
1:12.58
Pl: 4
6:44.22
1:14.14
Pl: 4
7:58.51
1:14.30
Pl: 3 1
9:11.98
1:13.47
Pl: 2 1
10:24.41
1:12.43
Pl: 2
11:36.98
1:12.58
Pl: 2
12:49.49
1:12.51
Pl: 2
14:02.10
1:12.62
Pl: 2
15:13.66
1:11.57
Pl: 2
3USAAbbey D’Agostino15:22.29
36.36
Pl: 7
1:51.33
1:14.97
Pl: 7
3:05.15
1:13.82
Pl: 8 -1
4:18.59
1:13.45
Pl: 6 2
5:32.11
1:13.52
Pl: 5 1
6:45.87
1:13.77
Pl: 5
7:59.63
1:13.76
Pl: 5
9:13.13
1:13.51
Pl: 5
10:26.97
1:13.84
Pl: 4 1
11:41.19
1:14.22
Pl: 4
12:55.54
1:14.36
Pl: 3 1
14:08.94
1:13.41
Pl: 3
15:22.29
1:13.35
Pl: 3
4ETHAzmera Gebru15:24.27
35.08
Pl: 3
1:48.28
1:13.21
Pl: 3
3:03.51
1:15.23
Pl: 2 1
4:17.30
1:13.80
Pl: 3 -1
5:29.93
1:12.63
Pl: 3
6:43.99
1:14.07
Pl: 3
7:58.65
1:14.66
Pl: 4 -1
9:12.20
1:13.56
Pl: 3 1
10:24.60
1:12.40
Pl: 3
11:38.08
1:13.48
Pl: 3
12:56.03
1:17.96
Pl: 5 -2
14:11.23
1:15.20
Pl: 5
15:24.27
1:13.04
Pl: 4 1
5GBRJo Pavey15:24.74
35.45
Pl: 4
1:50.07
1:14.63
Pl: 4
3:03.82
1:13.75
Pl: 3 1
4:17.07
1:13.26
Pl: 2 1
5:29.69
1:12.62
Pl: 2
6:43.80
1:14.12
Pl: 2
7:58.44
1:14.65
Pl: 2
9:12.93
1:14.49
Pl: 4 -2
10:27.60
1:14.68
Pl: 6 -2
11:41.81
1:14.21
Pl: 6
12:56.28
1:14.48
Pl: 6
14:11.54
1:15.26
Pl: 6
15:24.74
1:13.21
Pl: 5 1
6USAEmily Sisson15:24.83
36.48
Pl: 8
1:51.71
1:15.23
Pl: 10 -2
3:05.64
1:13.94
Pl: 10
4:19.27
1:13.63
Pl: 9 1
5:32.49
1:13.22
Pl: 7 2
6:46.15
1:13.67
Pl: 6 1
7:59.91
1:13.76
Pl: 6
9:13.47
1:13.57
Pl: 6
10:27.29
1:13.82
Pl: 5 1
11:41.54
1:14.25
Pl: 5
12:55.82
1:14.28
Pl: 4 1
14:09.21
1:13.40
Pl: 4
15:24.83
1:15.62
Pl: 6 -2
7USALiz Costello15:28.88
36.20
Pl: 6
1:51.54
1:15.35
Pl: 9 -3
3:05.38
1:13.85
Pl: 9
4:19.01
1:13.64
Pl: 8 1
5:32.31
1:13.30
Pl: 6 2
6:46.35
1:14.04
Pl: 7 -1
8:00.27
1:13.92
Pl: 7
9:14.35
1:14.08
Pl: 8 -1
10:29.86
1:15.52
Pl: 8
11:46.41
1:16.55
Pl: 7 1
13:03.06
1:16.65
Pl: 7
14:18.85
1:15.79
Pl: 7
15:28.88
1:10.04
Pl: 7
8USAKaitlin Goodman15:29.89
36.68
Pl: 10
1:51.47
1:14.80
Pl: 8 2
3:04.72
1:13.25
Pl: 6 2
4:18.55
1:13.83
Pl: 5 1
5:32.51
1:13.97
Pl: 8 -3
6:46.63
1:14.13
Pl: 8
8:00.79
1:14.16
Pl: 9 -1
9:14.84
1:14.05
Pl: 9
10:29.64
1:14.81
Pl: 7 2
11:46.70
1:17.06
Pl: 8 -1
13:03.52
1:16.82
Pl: 8
14:19.17
1:15.66
Pl: 8
15:29.89
1:10.73
Pl: 8
9USAElaina Balouris15:45.58
36.70
Pl: 11
1:51.91
1:15.21
Pl: 11
3:05.77
1:13.86
Pl: 11
4:19.43
1:13.66
Pl: 10 1
5:32.84
1:13.41
Pl: 10
6:46.86
1:14.03
Pl: 9 1
8:00.48
1:13.62
Pl: 8 1
9:13.85
1:13.38
Pl: 7 1
10:30.12
1:16.27
Pl: 9 -2
11:46.84
1:16.73
Pl: 9
13:04.05
1:17.21
Pl: 9
14:24.53
1:20.48
Pl: 9
15:45.58
1:21.05
Pl: 9
DNFETHSentayehu Ejigu
34.78
Pl: 2
1:48.05
1:13.27
Pl: 2
3:04.23
1:16.18
Pl: 5 -3
4:20.13
1:15.90
Pl: 11 -6
5:38.22
1:18.10
Pl: 11
DNFUSASara Slattery
36.15
Pl: 5
1:51.10
1:14.95
Pl: 5
3:05.02
1:13.93
Pl: 7 -2
4:18.81
1:13.79
Pl: 7
5:32.66
1:13.86
Pl: 9 -2
6:48.01
1:15.36
Pl: 10 -1

Quick Take #1: Hall is doing more mileage than ever and will run both the 5,000 and 10,000 at the Trials
Hall said that she’s been doing her best training since she began working with coach Derek Thompson and that she’s further ahead now than she was at this point last year, when she wound up second at USAs. She doesn’t really log her mileage but said she’s been doing more strength work than ever, estimating that she hit around 90 miles a week earlier in the year. That should serve her well as she’s going to try to run both the 5k and the 10k at the Trials to give herself two opportunities to make the Olympic team. Hall is a serious threat in both as she has the top 10k time on the year (31:37) and is #4 in the 5k (though #1, Molly Huddle, may not run the 5k in Rio).

Hall has come through when it counts the past two years (she won NCAAs and was third at USAs in 2014 and second at USAs last year) and is well-positioned for another top-three finish in Eugene next month.

Quick Take #2: Abbey D’Agostino is confident she can put it together by the Trials and make another U.S. team
D’Agostino was dinged up after finishing 5th at World Indoors in March due to a few injuries and didn’t open her outdoor season until last weekend, running 4:14 for 1500. She was shooting for 15:20 tonight and came close despite leading her pack for a chunk of the race.

D’Agostino had to cross train early this spring but feels like she hasn’t lost that much fitness (this is actually two seconds faster than what she ran at Millrose in February); it also helps that D’Agostino was injured last winter and has experience cross training and coming back from injury to make a U.S. team. With that said, she admitted that “there’s work to be done” but thinks that she can get to where she needs to be by the final of the Olympic Trials (it helps that the women’s 5,000 is at the end of the meet).

“It’s an unconventional path but there have been many stories of people who have made teams that way,” D’Agostino said.

Quick Take #3: Jo Pavey admitted that she’s “up against it” in her quest to make a fifth Olympic team but wants to prove she can still run fast at age 42
Pavey had a bad chest infection in the month before the British 10,000 Trials (held on May 21) and was only 10th there. Tonight, she came up agonizingly close to hitting the Olympic standard (she ran 15:24.74, the standard is 15:24.00) and might have made it had she not thrown off her momentum by stepping on the rail on the final turn.

“It’s just stupid,” Pavey said. “I’ve never done that before. I think I was just tired and you start losing your form a bit when you’re tired.”

Pavey said that she’ll have to talk to take some time to assess where to go from here as she doesn’t have the 10,000 standard either (she was initially going to go for it here but the event was switched to a 5,000 a few days ago).

“I’m running out of time,” Pavey said. “If it’s not to be, it’s not to be. It’s just frustrating to have gotten the illness and trying to play catch-up.”

With that said, Pavey has no plans to stop anytime soon.

“I don’t think I’ll have a definite like, retirement. I’ll always want to run, I’ll always want to take part in races.

“I enjoy the banter about me being old. It’s kind of funny because I think when you get to my age, people presume you’re too old. I think if anything, even if I don’t make it to the Olympics, I kind of want to…prove that I’m not as old as I appear to be running. Because that’s the trouble when you get to my age: you start running badly, everyone just thinks you’re too old. I know I am pretty old and I’m not ever going to run my pb’s but I’d like to run better than I am [right now].”

(There’s no video of Pavey as it was totally dark by the time I interviewed her).

MB: Jo Pavey?


 

MB: Official 2016 adidas Boost Boston Games Discussion Thread


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