2017 NYRR Millrose Games

A Thrilling Night Uptown at Millrose

The NYRR Millrose Games celebrated its 110th running—its sixth at the New Balance Track and Field Center at the Armory—by once again bringing top local competitors and world-class track and field athletes together for a night full of racing. The meet began with events for club, high school, and college teams before a two-hour live broadcast of the professional events on NBC.

Youth athletes had the opportunity to warm up the track for the pros, with events like the NYRR Fastest Kid on the Block 55-meter dash, the NYRR Youth 400 meters, and the NYRR Young Runners Invitational 800 meters.

In the boys' 800-meter race, Kymoy Phillip of Brooklyn defended his title from last year, lowering his time to 2:19.34. The girls' race was run during the live broadcast, and Aster Johnson, also from Brooklyn, broke the finish tape in 2:41.53.

Opening the professional races, Kate Van Buskirk of Canada took the women’s Fred Lebow 3000 Meters in 8:52.08. The men’s Paavo Nurmi Two-Mile came down to an exciting last-lap battle, with Ben True of the United States finishing in 8:11.33, just .23 seconds clear of fellow American Ryan Hill.

The middle-distance events featured a number of record-setting performances, highlighted by Ajee Wilson winning the women’s 800 meters in a new American indoor record of 1:58.27. Samantha Watson of Henrietta, NY finished sixth in 2:01.78, and her time broke Mary Decker’s American high school record.

In the 500-meter events, Vernon Norwood defeated last year’s winner, Brycen Spratling; Norwood's 1:00.11 winning time came just five-hundredths of a second shy of Spratling’s American record. In contrast, Courtney Okolo smashed the women’s American record, lowering the mark from 1:08.71 to 1:07.34.

The signature event of the NYRR Millrose Games, the Wanamaker Mile, did not disappoint, either, delivering world-leading times in both the men’s and the women’s race.

In the women’s race, Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands closed her final quarter-mile in under 62 seconds to storm away from Americans Kate Grace and Shannon Rowbury. Hassan’s 4:19.89 set a new meet record and currently stands as the fastest time in the world this year.

Closing the meet, the men’s Wanamaker Mile had a pack of runners still in contention with two laps to go, when Long Island native Kyle Merber made a surge to the front. Eric Jenkins, the 2016 New Balance Fifth Avenue Mile winner, covered the move and shifted into another gear on the final lap, holding on to win in 3:53.23. The time was a new track personal best for Jenkins, and made him the fastest miler in the world this year to date.

At the end of the meet, the two Wanamaker Mile winners were presented with trophies by NYRR's President and CEO Michael Capiraso and NYRR's President, Events, and Race Director of the TCS New York City Marathon Peter Ciaccia. Collecting some nice hardware early in the season, these two champions—and the many others who competed on the Armory track—look to build upon the momentum from the NYRR Millrose Games as they continue their 2017 seasons.

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