February 13, 2016
Galen Rupp’s marathon debut was a tremendous success as he won the 2016 US Olympic Marathon Trials over Meb Keflezighi as they both qualified for the Rio Olympics. (Full race recap and analysis here).
Both Meb and Ritz were complimentary to one another after the race, but it was clear there was some tension during the race during the 20th mile when Rupp got too close for Keflezighi’s liking as they were pulling away from Tyler Pennel in third place. We’re not sure if there was actual physical contact between Rupp and Keflezhigi, but it was clear that Keflezighi said some words to Rupp and made a few gestures with his hand. Screen shots below show some of what happened.
At the post-race press conference, ESPN’s Bonnie Ford asked Meb, a 23-time marathoner, about what he said to Galen, a marathon rookie, during the race.
“It’s not a track, the road is open,” said Meb as the press corps burst into laughter. ” It was not a very friendly conversation,” added the usually polite Meb.
Meb continued talking about how athletes including Ed Torres have a tradition of running too close and clipping his heels, but it shouldn’t happen on the roads. As Meb was speaking, Galen Rupp entered the press conference stage and took his empty stool, immediately to Meb’s right. Meb saw him and did a little double take as he was in the process of saying how Galen frustrated him during the race.
Many of the journalists laughed as Galen sat down as he was presumably unaware of what Meb had been talking about and why the journalists were laughing.
Watch it for yourself as we have a full video of the exchange below.
Talk about the exchange on the messageboard: MB: Meb and Galen really do not like each other.