Saturday, June 4, 2011

Eugene Diary: Part 4, Distance Night in Eugene

Mosop was a blur all night
"Distance Night in Eugene" started off with a bang in what could have seemed like a snoozer of an event. The men were attempting world records at 25k (en route) and 30k (75 laps for those keeping score). What started as metronome like 70 second laps turned into the Moses Mosop show after about the first 15k. Mosop negative split all night and scored a US soil record for 20k (from Bill Rodgers), a World Record at 25k (1:12:25) and a World Record at 30k (1:26:47). What impressed me most was the 63 second lap he dropped at lap 45. An excellent showing to get things going.

The second race of the night was the Women's 5000 that was stacked with Americans (Shalane Flanagan, Kara Goucher, Amy Yoder-Begley, etc) and current World Record holder Tirunesh Dibaba. Well, Dibaba seemed to be having leg troubles before the race and did not start and the rest of the field never really got going fast enough early to give Flanagan a chance at the American Record. While she gave a valiant effort and finished strong in 14:49, you could tell she was a tad disappointed. Kara Goucher's comeback continued with a strong 15:11 showing and Yoder-Begley was way back just under 16.

Solinsky walks off the track
Next what was supposed to be the main event. The showdown of Chris Solinsky versus Galen Rupp in a winner take American Record style race. This never really happened as Rupp did not start, likely due to pollen issues and Solinsky dropped out 7 laps in (Side note: I wonder if either will try to go tomorrow). The race started rather abrupt with a 61 second first lap before going to 68, 67 and then falling into a steady diet of 64's.

While the front of the pack was sorting itself out, Mo Farah (who now trains with Rupp and Alberto Salazar) began to work his way through the pack. He eventually got to the front and powered home the last 600 for a convincing win and European (and British) Record in 26:46, the fastest time in the world in the past 2 years.

While the crowd seemed quite stunned that Rupp did not start, they were still treated to an excellent night of racing and an appetizer of what is to come tomorrow. Can't wait to get back in the morning!

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  1. Wish it had been televised here last night but it's on this afternoon from 2:30-5. Wish Rupp and Solinsky had better performances. 9 runners under 27 min in the 10K!!! Amazing! The previous best on US soil was 2 runners

  2. Yeah, that train of 9-10 guys was trucking. Hope to see some more great performances today. International Mile is about to start