By Chris Lotsbom, @ChrisLotsbom
(c) 2013 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved – Used with permission.
NEW YORK (20-Sep) — American miler Morgan Uceny is on the move once again. The 28-year-old Olympian arrived at JFK Airport last night carrying extra luggage, knowing that she would not be returning to her former training base in Loughborough, England. After Sunday’s NYRR Fifth Avenue Mile presented by Nissan, Uceny will go back home to Indiana for a bit of vacation, not knowing exactly where her next training base will be.
“When I came over here [to New York] I had my life packed with me,” Uceny told Race Results Weekly, speaking at the New York Road Runner offices today. “We’re not exactly sure where we’ll be settling down yet or where base is.”
Earlier today, British Athletics announced in a press release that Uceny’s coach, Terrence Mahon, would be leaving his position as Lead Endurance Coach for Great Britain. Since November of 2012, Uceny had been based in Loughborough, having followed Mahon from the Mammoth Track Club to Britain last year. Now, less than twelve months after moving to the United Kingdom, Uceny and her teammates –Anna Willard and Jen Rhines– are coming back to train in America.
“I am pleased to have worked closely with some very talented British coaches and support staff during this period in implementing a multi-faceted approach to training, including all aspects of the sports science and medical team in place at the national performance Institute,” Mahon said in a statement provided by British Athletics. “There is a talented body of endurance coaches in the U.K. not to mention world class individuals… I wish everyone at British Athletics the best in the run-up to 2016, and will follow GB athletes’ progress in the future.”
A day after arriving back in the United States, Uceny was asked to reflect on her time spent in Britain. The Cornell University alumnus responded candidly with a mixture of emotions.
“It was definitely an experience,” she said, taking a moment’s pause. “The facilities that they had in Loughborough are really great, state of the art. They have great running trails, access to a track, and also an indoor facility. At the end of the day the weather was pretty terrible, I don’t think I am going to miss that [laughs]. But I’m glad that it happened because I learned a lot about myself, what I want in my life and what I don’t want in my life, and so if anything it was good to figure out things for the future.”
Looking forward, Uceny does not know where the group will end up. Currently, a search for the most optimal place is in the works. Among factors they must consider are access to facilities and the ability to gain more teammates.
“It’s kind of just like a re-building process [for the team],” she said. “Terrence is just a great coach and I’ll go wherever I need to keep him on my team.”
Uceny labeled her return to the United States as simply another move, something that comes along with being an elite athlete in the sport.
“I guess I’ve kind of gotten used to making a lot of moves,” she said. “It’s just part of the lifestyle. I would like to maybe be a little more settled in the next couple years.”
Just before leaving England, Uceny sold her Mini Cooper car to fellow elite miler Hannah England; it was England’s first car.
Entering Sunday’s race, Uceny is riding a wave of confidence coming from last weekend’s win at the Great North CityGames road mile in 4:33.97. Uceny admitted taking the victory was a bit of a surprise.
This week, she hopes for more of the same.
“It’s a great field and it’s usually a fast race,” she said “As long as the weather holds out, it should be a great race.”
LetsRun.com Addition: Our article on Mahon’s departure from the UK is here: After just one year on the job, Terrence Mahon is out as UK national distance coach.
In that article, Mahon says, “Both Anna Pierce and Morgan Uceny are already back in the US. Morgan is running at the 5th Ave mile on Sunday and then she will take a break for a few weeks. Anna is already doing some base training in CA. They both will be doing their early season altitude training in Mammoth Lakes with the support of the Mammoth Track Club.”