Steph Garcia leads three under 4:30 at 2015 Sir Walter Miler
August 10, 2015 – Raleigh, NC – On Friday night, August 7th, nearly 2000 spectators lined the Meredith College track and stood atop the grass embankment to watch New Balance and Furman Elite athlete, Steph Garcia, lead Brooks’ Amanda Eccleston and New Jersey-New York Track Club’s Heather Wilson to the top three mile times in the World for the 2015 Outdoor Season. Garcia finished in a personal best time of 4:28.84, to become the 58th American to run under the hallowed 4:30 barrier. The time was also a North Carolina State Outdoor Record. Eccleston (4:29.06) and Wilson (4:29.39) also ran personal bests and became the 59th and 60th members of the club, respectively. At the 2014 event, Garcia paced her Furman Elite teammate, Heidi See, to the win and then State Record (4:34.05). This year, See returned the favor, pacing Garcia through the first 1000 meters of the race. Both will compete for their respective countries at the 2015 IAAF Track & Field Championships later this month in Beijing, China. Garcia will compete in the 3000 meter Steeplechase for Team USA. See will compete in the 15oo meters for her native Australia; where she was the 2015 National Champion.
In the Mens race, Adidas’ Robby Andrews used a big sprint down the fan-engulfed homestretch to lead five men under the 4:00 barrier in a brisk 3:57.38; just off Ken Popejoy’s long standing State Record of 3:57.3. Andrews will represent Team USA in Beijing in the 1500 meters. Following Andrews under four were Hoka One One and New Jersey-New York Track Club athlete, Kyle Merber (3:57.97), his teammate Jack Bolas (3:58.83), and first timers Lex Williams (3:59.40) and Brandon Hudgins (3:59.67). Williams and Hudgins become the 447th and 448th Americans to run under four minutes for the distance. Andrews and Merber also helped lead Team USA over Team North Carolina in the Hayes Barton Cup. The win went to the team with the lowest combined score of their top four placing runners. Team USA scored 13 points (1,2,4,6) to Team NC’s 23 (3,5,7,8).
The 2015 event kicked off with the ‘Running Store/Local Co. Battle,” where local running store employees/sponsored runners, and representatives from local companies, competed in the mile. Bull City Running’s Matthew Blivin took the title in 4:26.08. A ‘Run Club Mile Relay’ exhibition followed, with the Fullsteam Ahead! Run Club winning in just under four minutes. Before the elite races began, Jordan Holoman (UNC Walk-Ons) sang the national anthem.
The event also included a pre and post race party at Raleigh Brewing Company. The party was highlighted by two food trucks, live music, and ‘Interval Sessions,’ where North Carolina-based breweries (Trophy Brewing, Small Batch Beer Co., The Unknown Brewing Co., and Big Boss Brewing Company) delivered their best low alcohol beer, with all proceeds going to the Umstead Coalition, a group that is “dedicated to the appreciation, use, and preservation of the William B. Umstead State Park.” On Thursday night, the Busy Bee Cafe hosted a pre-race dinner for the elite athletes and supporters. The event concluded on Saturday morning with a “Run with the Pros” event at Umstead Park, where locals were invited to run the trails with the competing elite athletes. Bagels and coffee were provided by ElliptiGO, who offered free demos of their unique product.
The event was called the “best glimpse of future growth for American track” by Sports Illustrated, in an in depth piece that was published Friday night, just hours after the events completion. In a preview of the event, the Sporting News said the event is helping to “redefine fan-friendly track and field.” Unlike many track and field events, the Sir Walter Miler allows fans to get right outside of lane four on the track, and all over the infield; creating a unique viewing experience.
The Sir Walter Miler is directed and promoted by Sir Walter Running; a local group that consists of Pat Price, Logan Roberts, and Sandy Roberts. Jeff Caron came on board this year to help construct the Women’s elite field. Greg Dame also assists in race day logistics. Keri Celeste and Alex Boseman were interns for the 2015 production. The event expanded after the success of 2013’s “Sandman Mile” and 2014’s Sir Walter Miler. A “Pop Up Miles” series was introduced in Raleigh this June that allowed two wild card entries into the elite Sir Walter Miler fields.
Sponsors of the 2015 Sir Walter Miler were Great Outdoor Provision Co., Busy Bee Cafe, Stiner Massage, North Carolina USATF, ElliptiGO, Arrow Haircuts, Taxi Taxi, and b.good. The event was broadcast live on FloTrack. The Sir Walter Miler is expected to return in 2016.
For more information, contact Pat Price at email@example.com and 919.260.8013
Womens Elite Mile (Race Video)
1. Steph Garcia 4:28.84 ($1350)
2. Amanda Eccleston 4:29.06 ($600)
3. Heather Wilson 4:29.39 ($500)
4. Morgan Uceny 4:34.02 ($100)
5. Christy Cazzola 4:39.70
6. Emily Lipari 4:46.33
7. Victoria Voronko 4:47.29
8. Andie Cozzarelli 4:47.92
9. Sarah Pease 4:52.39
10. Ericka Charles 5:00.21
Mens Elite Mile (Race Video)
1. Robby Andrews 3:57.38 ($1000)
2. Kyle Merber 3:57.97 ($500)
3. Jack Bolas 3:58.83 ($400)
4. Lex Williams 3:59.40 ($200)
5. Brandon Hudgins 3:59.67 ($100)
6. Ford Palmer 4:00.47
7. Donnie Cowart 4:00.48
8. Isaac Presson 4:00.86
9. Cory Leslie 4:01.66
10. Craig Forys 4:01.79
11. Joe Stilin 4:02.12
12. Jake Hurysz 4:08.04
13. Kyle Graves 4:09.88
14. Christian Brewer 4:10.32
15. Jake Edwards 4:12.22
Photos from Cheryl Treworgy (PrettySporty.com)