July 28, 2016
EUGENE, Ore. — Emma Coburn of Team USA and New Balance (editor’s note: we at LetsRun.com don’t usually go out of our way to point out who a runner’s sponsors are, but now with Rule 40 underway and its ridiculous restrictions, we feel we should) will be one of the favorites for a medal in the 3000m steeplechase at the Rio Olympics as she will enter with the third-fastest time in the world this year.
Coburn is running the 1500m at Friday’s TrackTown Summer Series meet in Eugene as a final Olympic tune-up and is on the “New York” team. (At the Summer Series meet, there are 4 city teams that aren’t teams in the traditional sense with a coach and/or general manager, but the athletes on the winning team get $1,000 each, so there was some good-natured trash talking at the press conference on Thursday).
Believe it or not, Coburn, with her 4:05.10 PR, will be the slowest entrant in the women’s 1500m (that’s because the race only has 6 competitors and is led by USA 800m champ Kate Grace, preview here), but that is fine with Coburn as a 1500m is what she needs to get ready for Rio.
Friday she’s using the 1500m to reignite the fire and get ready for Rio, saying of the steeple, “The steeplechase is really hard on everyone’s body.”
Coburn will also be cheering for her NY teammates. “I’m going to be cheering really loud for some people and golf clapping for others… The team prize money, that’s a lot of money so I think during the 4×4 people are going to be cheering loud. I’m hoping to get out there and beat some people and run close to a PR,” she said.
Plans are for a rabbit to take the field out in 2:10 (4:03.75 pace) on Friday.
Coburn Wants a Medal in Rio
Coburn’s focus is getting on the medal podium in Rio and she knows that means having a good last 150m, which she didn’t have last year at the World Championships (Coburn was in a pack of 5 people contending for the medals and ended up fifth).
“I’m fit and I’m healthy and I ‘m feeling ready to run fast and I’m just hoping I have it in me… The last 150 at Worlds last year was not a very brilliant finish, so I’m hoping the last 150 in Rio goes a little better for me,” she said.
After Friday, Emma will go home and then to Houston for team processing before jetting off to the Olympics. She has no concerns about Zika as she said, “Team USA does everything to the best of their ability. I don’t want to go to Rio with anyone else.”
Video of Coburn below (our apologies for the poor audio the last half of the video)