Saturday, July 5, 2014

Run fast, run hard, run fearless--Gilbert wins USA junior 5000 title & trip to world junior champs...

EUGENE--Run fast, run hard, run fearless.

That is the mantra that Colby Gilbert (left/photo courtesy University of Washington) has taken, as the University of Washington redshirt freshman won the 5000 meters at the USA Junior Track & Field Championships on a sunny Saturday afternoon at Historic Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon, and a spot on Team USA for the IAAF World Junior Championships in Eugene two and a half weeks later.

Gilbert, a product of Skyview HS in Vancouver--the same high school that produced two time US Olympian and reigning USA javelin champion Kara Patterson--used a 27.4 last 200 meters to win the national title and claim his spot on the world junior team in a time of 14:21.47.

Gilbert sat towards the back of the pack and began moving up after the 2600 meter mark, positioning himself in fifth at 3000.

After a series of 69 second laps, he took the lead near the bell with a 66.98 lap, then ran a 55.91 last 400, with a 27.4 finish to defeat Brian Barraza of Houston, who ran 14:22.07.

Among those left in Gilbert's wake were Jack Keelan, and Sam Wharton of Stanford, who finished second and third at the USA junior cross country championships in Boulder in February.  Keelan was third in 14:27.03, and Wharton fifth in 14:33.81.

In the mixed zone afterwards, Gilbert revealed a tattoo on his shoulder with the words, "run fast, run hard, run fearless", a thought passed to him by his mother, Carolynne, before races.  Carolynne, a former runner at the University of Portland, passed away in February 2013 after battling breast cancer.

When asked about his race plan, he stated that he had a bit of a speed advantage over the field and that he was going for the lead with about 400-500 to go.

He plans to shoot for a personal best at the world junior championships in two weeks, and call it a season and prepare to run for the Huskies in the upcoming cross country season.

In other action at the USA juniors:

--UW commit Rose Christen finished second in her heat of the 800, running 2:07.97 to qualify for Sunday's finals;

--Washington State's CJ Allen, the reigning Pac-12 champ, qualified for the finals of the 400 hurdles, running 52.28 to get the final time qualifier; 

--Alexa Efraimson of Camas easily qualified for the finals of the women's 1500, winning her heat in 4:38.97;

--Seattle's Whitney Diggs from Portland State ran 55.14 to get the final qualifying spot in the women's 400.  Imani Apostol (57.39), and Dorie Dalzell (58.09) of the Seatown Express did not qualify for the finals;

--CeCe Jackson of Portland State, another Seattle native, finished fourth in her heat of the 400 hurdles in 59.53 to move on to the finals on Sunday.  She also qualified for the finals in the 100 hurdles, running 13.68 to take second in her heat;

--Chinne Okoronkwo of the Flying AJs TC in Tacoma, a sophomore at Mountlake Terrace and the reigning 3A champ in both the long and triple jumps, was fifth in the triple jump at 41-1 3/4 (12.54m);

NOTE:  USA Track & Field and the Oregon 14 local organizing committee contributed to this report.

1 comment:

sammy g 5k said...

Also, Ruby Watson---an upcoming junior in high school was sixth in the 3k--she runs for Whatcom Tesseract out of Bellingham.

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