Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bernard Lagat returns to NYC to run Fifth Avenue Mile...

NEW YORK--American Olympic mile stars Bernard Lagat (left/photo courtesy New York Road Runners) and Shannon Rowbury will close out their 2008 seasons with their road racing debuts at the famed Continental Airlines Fifth Avenue Mile on Sunday, September 21.

Lagat and Rowbury headline a deep professional field of 10 Olympians competing in the 28th running of the world-famous mile road race down Fifth Avenue, including Americans Nick Symmonds, Erin Donohue, Nick Willis of New Zealand, and Lisa Dobriskey of Great Britain.

Lagat, 33, of Tucson, AZ, was a two-time Olympic medalist for Kenya in 2000 and 2004 before becoming an American citizen and going on to win the 1500 and 5000 meters at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Track and Field in June. In 2007, Lagat captured double gold at the IAAF World Championships in Osaka. A six-time winner of the renowned Wanamaker Mile, Lagat will be aiming to become only the second man in history to win both the Fifth Avenue and Wanamaker miles in the same year. Only Isaac Viciosa of Spain in 1997 has won the Wanamaker Mile and Fifth Avenue Mile double.

Former Auburn HS standout Chris Lukezic is also entered in the field.

The race down the world-famous thoroughfare begins near East 80th Street and finishes at East 60th Street. The professional women’s race is scheduled to start at 12:45 p.m., followed by the professional men’s race at 1:05 p.m. (all times listed are Eastern).

NOTE: The New York Road Runners contributed to this report.

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