February 28, 2015
BOSTON – Cas Loxsom won his first national title, in very impressive fashion, running 1:15:33 to break his own national record.
Brycen Spratling, the world record holder at 500m, and Erik Sowinski, the former American record holder at 600m were in the field, but this race was all Loxsom. He got the lead in the first 200m and never gave it up. He split 48.26 at 400m and held on for a very fast 1:15.33, better than his previous American record of 1:15.58 (and the 1:15:42 he ran on a non-standard track in 2013). Cas was in shouting distance of the world record of Nico Motchebon of 1:15.12.
Making the day even sweeter for Cas, was he did it before his family and friends, and his Brooks Beast teammate Mark Wieczorek was second.
Forget about the American record, however, this one was about Cas winning his first national title. Cas had been second at World Juniors, second at NCAAs, and second at USA outdoors last year.
He told NBCSN’s Lewis Johnson, “I feel blessed. The American record is great. Being able to win my first national title is better. I’ve been a professional bridesmaid. A lot of seconds at NCAAs and USAs. That’s a big step in my career.”
Results, analysis and post-race reaction appear below. *Splits
|5||Boris Berian||Big Bear TC||1:16.57|
Quick Take #1: Loxsom capped a dream weekend with a win and an American record.
Loxsom said that “sometimes there’s those weekends like this where everything works out.” He was in the building Friday for the high school New England Championships – where he got to see two athletes from his alma mater claim titles and hand out awards for the 600 – and after looking great in his prelim yesterday, came back today for a dominant win in the 600, lowering his American record to 1:15.33 in front of his parents and his high school friends from Connecticut.
Speaking to Loxsom yesterday, it was obvious he wanted a fast time and it was no surprise to see him surge to the lead early. He would only extend it throughout the race, claiming a wire-to-wire victory – exactly how he drew it up.
Toward the end of the interview, Loxsom admitted that in the past, he may not have taken the sport as seriously as he should have and wasn’t doing everything he could to win. But after getting a taste of the big time last year (second at USAs and appearances at two Diamond League meets), Loxsom knew he had to be fully devoted to making the most of his talent and is now doing everything he can to remain at – or surpass – that level.
Quick Take #2: Erik Sowinski tipped his hat to Loxsom and said he knew coming in it would take an AR to get the win.
Sowinski said his speed endurance isn’t quite where he’d like it right now but was very complimentary of Loxsom’s run at 600. Looking towards to outdoors, we asked Erik if he thought Nick Symmonds would end up running the 1,500 as he’s said is the case. Sowinski said he didn’t know but laughed and said he certainly hopes Symmonds runs the 1,500 as it makes making the World Championship team for 800 all the easier.
Quick Take #3: 500 World Record Holder Brycen Spratling didn’t have a good final but he’s had a great indoor campaign (but he’s still sponsor-less).
Spratling, who ran much of the race on the outside of lane 1, inside of lane 2, wasn’t thrilled with his tactics. “I kind of messed up in the beginning and didn’t get the position I wanted but it’s all-right. It was hard to go tr to get those guys,” said Spratling. Spratling added he thought he’d had a “pretty good indoor season” and would likely open up outdoors at the Florida Relays.
Spratling, who was sponsor-less when he set his 500 WR, was wearing an Asics singlet and shorts today, but when we asked him if that meant he’d signed a deal, he said it did not.