First, it was the redcoats. Now, a group of top runners from the Nike Oregon Project—the black shorts, if you will—is getting ready to invade Boston.
Whether they’re chasing U.S. indoor records or simply prepping for the IAAF World Indoor Championships March 7−9 in Sopot, Poland, six of Nike Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar’s best and brightest head to Boston University in early 2014 for three weekends of meets.
The half-dozen contests kick off on January 16, Runner’s World reports, when Jordan Hasay and U.S. Olympian Shannon Rowbury face off in a two-miler and Treniere Moser takes on teen phenom Mary Cain in a 1000-meter duel. The U.S. record over that distance is 2:34.19, Runner’s World points out, and the race may well represent an attempt at Jen Toomey’s mark, set in 2004.
Lest the ladies have all the fun, that day also will bring a 5000-meter showdown between two Olympians: U.S. silver medalist Galen Rupp and Canada’s Cam Levins.
Rupp—whose 3:50.92 mile at BU’s Terrier Classic last January wound up being the year’s fastest mile for an American, indoor or outdoor—returns to Beantown the following weekend for a two-miler.
Like the 1K race the weekend before, Rupp’s 2M could be an attempt at a national record, Runner’s World speculates, given that it’s a somewhat uncommon distance. What’s more, Rupp—who already holds the national 3000-meter record—has come within 23 hundredths of a second of Bernard Lagat’s two-mile U.S. record of 8:09:49.
Also on the weekend of January 24−25, Rowbury, Hasay, Cain, and Moser will line up for what figures to be an exciting mile.
The series wraps up on Feb. 8, when Rupp competes in a mile.
Stay tuned for more about the upcoming IAAF World Indoor Championships; with 2014 being a non-Olympic year with no outdoor World Championships, the meet is shaping up to be the highlight of the season.
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg