Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Battle Royale: Edward Cheserek vs. 14:00 barrier at New Balance Outdoor

Star sophomore from New Jersey via Kenya, Edward Cheserek, will likely have one goal on his mind this Thursday night when he toes the line at New Balance Outdoor Nationals with the chance of a national championship on the line, busting the 14:00 barrier. The young Kenyan burst onto the U.S. High School scene this year and has already flirted with the 14:00 barrier, dropping a 14:02.33 at the Larry Ellis Memorial Invitational at Princeton University on April 22nd.

Cheserek just broke the High School sophomore mile record this past weekend, running 4:03.29 to place fourth in the Jim Ryun Dream Mile, a few seconds back from Lukas Verzbicas' 3:59.72. Unfortunately for Cheserek, he won't have quite the competition this Thursday in Greensboro that he had in New York on Saturday. That's not to say there will be no one to run with though.

The field has some tough competitors with 8:46 3200 meter man Jeremy Elkaim, who is also from Jersey, as well as North Carolinians, Mitch Mallory and Thomas Graham. Mallory recently dominated the field at the NC 4A State Championship running 9:13 and Graham, who is only a junior, ran a 9:04.14 2-mile indoors at the Brooks PR Invitational, after running Foot Locker Nationals, and then ran a strong 9:07.17 to win the Raleigh Relays 3200, before winning the state 3A independent titles at 1600 and 3200. Both look to run around 14:30 (or better).

New Balance Outdoor Nationals kick off Thursday at NC A&T in Greensboro, NC. I'll be there tweeting some live coverage. Full start lists are available here.

Here's the 5000 field:

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