WTW: One Final Look at The TEN, Where Nico Young & Lauren Ryan Were Big Winners

The Week That Was in Running, March 11-17, 2024

Were you asleep and missed our analysis of The TEN on Saturday night or our on-site coverage of the United Airlines NYC Half on Sunday morning? Catch up here:

Each week, we try to make the sport more fun to follow by putting the prior week’s action in perspective for you. Past editions of our Week That Was weekly recap can be found here. You should come to LetsRun each and every day for the latest news but if you miss a day, you can always go to our archive page. If you like our written weekly recap, you’ll love our weekly Track Talk Podcast as well. Got a tip, question or comment? Please call us at 844-LETSRUN (538-7786), email us, or post in our forum.

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Last Week By The Numbers

0 – number of NCAA qualifiers picked up by Northern Arizona’s Nico Young and New Mexico’s Habtom Samuel at The TEN.

Grant Fisher wins. Kevin Morris photo.

1 – percent of the 10,000m race that Grant Fisher, who has a 26:33 10,000 pb, led at The TEN. He led the final 100 and won in 26:52.04.

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1 – number of collegiate records set by Nico Young at The TEN as he ran 26:52.72 to obliterate Sam Chelanga’s 27:08.39 CR from 2010.

1 – number of 10,000 Olympic Games qualifiers picked up by Joshua Cheptegei, the 3-time World 10,000 champion, at the Villa de Laredo 10K in Spain. Cheptegei ran 26:53 in a race won by Ethiopia’s Yomif Kejelcha, who ran 26:37 after going out in 13:11.

1 – number of sub-30 clockings recorded in the women’s race at The TEN as World XC silver medallist Tsigie Gebreselama of Ethiopia ran 29:48.34 to become the first woman to break 30:00 on US soil.

Nico Young. Kevin Morris photo.

2 – number of Olympic Games qualifiers picked up by Nico Young and Habtom Samuel at The TEN.

2 – number of women’s national records set at The TEN.

  • 30:35.66 – Lauren Ryan (Australia)
  • 31:33.07 – Florencia Borelli (Argentina)

4 – number of women’s Olympic qualifiers (sub-30:40) picked up at The TEN (including Gebreselama, who already had the qualifier).

5 – number of men’s national records set at the TEN.

  • 26:52.87 – Andreas Almgren (Sweden)
  • 26:55.54 – Adrian Wildschutt (South Africa)
  • 27:09.57 – Jack Rayner (Australia)
  • 27:26.02 – Luis Grijalva (Guatemala)
  • 27:41.81 – Gulveer Singh (India)

8 – number of men’s Olympic qualifiers (sub-27:00) picked up at The TEN.

15 – number of women who have hit the Olympic standards in the 10,000 (30:40) if you limit it to a max of three per country (WA will take 27 but up to 8 additional spots could go to athletes based on their cross country world ranking).

16 – number of men who have hit the Olympic standards in the 10,000 (27:00) if you limit it to a max of three per country (WA will take 27 but up to 8 additional spots could go to athletes based on their cross country world ranking).

16 – number of laps finished at The TEN by Alicia Monson, who was trying to become the first American woman to break 30:00. Battling a stomach virus, Monson maintained 30:00 pace for less than 10 laps before spending much of the rest of the night in the restroom. The good news for Monson is she already has the 10,000 standard, which she picked up last year at The TEN.

16:00 – 2nd half split recorded by Germany’s Konstanze Klosterhalfen in the Laredo 10K, which she won in a disappointing 31:07 after going out in 15:07.


Track is a crazy sport sometimes: you can qualify for the Olympics in a race like The TEN, but not the NCAA regionals simply based on who else is in the race and how many events are offered. And some may think it’s crazy that Cheptegei even has to qualify for the Olympics at all, but I’ll point out it’s not like the NBA just put Michael Jordan in the Finals every year. His team still had to play the regular season and rest of the playoffs, but it certainly could be argued that a strong showing at World XC should be enough to put Cheptegei in the Olympics.


One other thought I had about The TEN was it showed that the top women are still such massive outliers, unlike in the men’s category. Right away, the two women aiming for sub-30 were way ahead of the others going for the standard.

If a man ran the world record (26:11.00), he wouldn’t come close to lapping someone running the Olympic standard — he’d finish 302.5 meters ahead of someone running an even 27:00 pace. If a woman ran the world record (29:01.03), she’d finish 537.9 meters ahead of a woman running an even 30:40.00 pace.

The Most Improved Award Goes to Under Armour/Australia’s Lauren Ryan

Can we give some love to new Australian 10,000 record holder Lauren Ryan, who ran 30:35.66 on Saturday night? Before the race, I was vaguely aware of her name but decided to do a little research on her backstory before writing this column. As a Baltimore resident, I was stunned to see this pop up on Wikipedia, “Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Ryan…” Yes that’s right, the Aussie record holder in the 10,000 is a member of the UA Mission Run Baltimore Distance team.

Lauren Ryan on the Baltimore waterfront (via her instagram @laurenryan____)

And to think at the end of 2022, Ryan had a 5000 pb of 15:22.48 (and 10,000 pb of 32:56.53). She now can run a 10,000 faster than twice her 5000 pb from just two years ago. To put that in perspective for you, if Nico Young had improved at that rate (his 5000 pb at the end of 2022 was 13:11.60), he’d be running the 10,000 in 26:13.8.

As for her backstory, Ryan ran pbs of 2:12 and 4:20 (1500) as a high schooler in Melbourne. She then headed stateside to Villanova, where she ran for two years with limited success as she battled some injuries and only ran 4:21.74 for 1500 (4:43 for the mile), 9:37 for 3000, and 16:26.06 for 5000. At Nova, she was 126th in her lone NCAA XC appearance in 2017 and never sniffed NCAAs on the track as she was never higher than 40th in two appearances at regionals in the 5000.

Ryan then transferred to Florida State, which she attended from 2019 to 2022. At FSU, she enjoyed more success but nothing that would come close to predicting a 30:35 10,000. After finishing 114th in NCAA XC in 2019, she then spent all of COVID locked down in Australia. Finally back stateside in 2021, she was an All-American in XC (26th) and then a few weeks later in her second indoor race ever for the Seminoles, she set an FSU indoor record of 15:40.40 in the 5000.

Ryan then ran 8:47.68 for 3000, which at the time was the 4th fastest NCAA 3000 time (it’s now #10 all-time) and placed 4th at 2022 NCAA indoors. Outdoors, she destroyed the field at ACCs in the 10,000, winning by more than 25 seconds in 32:56.53, but she never made it to NCAAs as she got COVID at the regional meet and didn’t advance. She graduated with pbs of 4:12.18, 8:47.88, and 15:22.48.

Florida State coach Bob Braman, who directly coached Ryan during her last year at FSU, spoke very highly of her when I reached him by phone on Monday. “Credit to Lauren. She just keeps getting better,” said Braman. “She’s not afraid to train. She wanted to be elite so I trained her hard.”

Last year, her first as a pro for UA, she ran 15:11.84 for 5000 and went out in the heats of the 5000 at Worlds. Indoors this year, she opened with a 15:15.79 in Boston on January 28 (2nd place), ran 8:42.31 for 3k on February 9 (1st place), then broke 15:00 for the first time on February 23 in Seattle (14:57.67, 2nd place).

Then on Saturday night, she skipped the 31s entirely and dropped her pb from 32:09.82 to 30:35.66 to qualify for Paris, where she will compete at the Stade de France in August. That is the same track where the previous Australian record was run: 2004 World XC champ Benita Willis clocked 30:37.68 in Paris in 2003 to place 8th at that year’s Worlds.

So congrats to Lauren and her coach Lara Rogers.

More on Ryan from December: It’s not about me; it’s about her’: Lauren Ryan dedicates Australian10,000  title win to her grandma The Aussie 10,000 was fascinating as it featured some quick laps and some as slow as 91 seconds.

Stat of the Week

There were also a pair of elite 1500m races at The TEN on Saturday, and the biggest story was Ventura (Calif.) High School junior Sadie Engelhardt running 4:09.70 for the win to move to #5 on the all-time US high school list. Jonathan Gault realized the following stat. Did you know the four high school women faster than Engelhardt have never run faster than their HS pbs?

Sadie Englehardt wins (Photo by Kevin Morris)

Top 5 US All-Time Girls’ HS 1500 List

1. 4:03.39 Alexa Efraimson, 2015
2. 4:04.62 Mary Cain, 2013
3. 4:07.21 Kate Murphy, 2016
4. 4:08.71 Christina Aragon, 2016
5. 4:09.70 Sadie Engelhardt, 2024

The good news is all of the women at #6-9 have run PBs after HS.

6. 4:10.95 Elise Cranny – pb is now 3:58.88
7. 4:11.43 Addy Wiley – pb is now 3:59.17
8. 4:12.62 Katie Rainsberger – pb is now 4:09.08
9. 4:14.11 Ella Donaghu – pb is 4:09.10
10. 4:14.24 Ellie Shea – still in HS

Odds & Ends

There were some big names running the 5k on the roads at the Podium 5K in Leicester, GBR, which served as the Athletics England 5K Championships over the weekend. 3-time global outdoor medallist Hagos Gebrhiwet, 29, got the win in 13:19, as 2022 World 1500 champ Jake Wightman ran a 27-second pb to place 11th in 13:52. 2023 800 bronze medallist Ben Pattison was 18th in 14:05.

MB: Watch out Josh and Jakob: Jake Wightman ran a 5k over the weekend and he lowered his pb by 27 seconds


Former marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei‘s prep for the 2024 TCS London Marathon seems to be going well as she broke 66:00 for the half for the fifth time in her career and first time since 2020 by running 65:51 to win the EDP Lisbon Half Marathon (her pb is 64:49 from 2020).


France’s Jimmy Gressier ran a European record of 27:07 for 10k on the roads at the Semi-Marathon de Lille Métropole on Sunday, which will boost his ranking on the Road to Paris list. Gressier earned a narrow victory over Kenya’s Jacob Krop, who has medalled in the 5000 at Worlds each of the last two years, as Krop was given the same time as Gressier. We assume Gressier didn’t have time to celebrate the win more than 400 meters out like he did at the French nationals last year.

In the 5k in Lille, 12:56 man Birhanu Balew of Bahrain got the win in 13:07 ahead of two-time world 5000 champ Muktar Edris, who ran 13:11.


Former Ethiopian half marathon record holder Jemal Yimer (58:33 in 2018) had a marathon breakthrough over the weekend in Seoul. In his five previous marathons, the 27-year-old had recorded two DNFs and hadn’t run faster than 2:08:58 (although he was 3rd in Boston in 2021). In Seoul, he got the win in 2:06:08 as compatriot Fikrte Wereta took the women’s title in 2:21:32.


Even though the women’s marathon world record is 11:18 slower than the men’s WR, the elite women got an 17-minute head start at Sunday’s Los Angeles Marathon. That extra 5:42 in cushion proved to be beneficial to women’s winner Stacy Ndiwa of Kenya, who got $6,000 for winning the women’s title in 2:25:29 and then an extra $10,000 for the battle of the sexes bonus as men’s winner Dominic Ngeno of Kenya ran 2:11:01.

The elite men were supposed to start exactly 17:00 behind the elite women so they could chase them down but that did not happen as race officials accidently started the men around four minutes and 15 seconds before they were supposed to, per the LA Daily News. Despite that, race organizers said the 17-minute gap was what the men had to overcome, which meant Ndiwa took home the bonus money.


A week ago, lululemon’s FURTHER race — a six-day race that was only for women and lululemon-endorsed athletes (I guess lululemon’s much discussed inclusion policy only goes so far) — ended in Palm Springs and Camille Herron was the big winner as she ran 560.330 miles (901.764 km) to break New Zealand’s Sandra Barwick‘s old world best of 549.063 miles (883.631 kilometers). Along the way, she set intermediate world best marks at 300 miles (59:54:58), 400km (62:50:45), 600km (81:23:38), and 400 miles (88:34:26).

*Camille Herron sets 6-day world record by running 560.33 miles at the 2024 lululemon FURTHER event


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