Ben True has been named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week after winning the USA 5 km Championships in Providence, R.I., Sunday.
True edged his competitor Andrew Bumbalough by one-tenth of a second to take the win in 13:52.1. This was the second consecutive win for true at the 5 km distance, making him the first man to win repeat national titles at the distance since Odis Sanders in 1981.
“With how the race played out, I knew it would come down to the kick,” True said. “It was a very smart group all the way through. From racing this course previously, I knew that you don’t really win the race going up the hill and you can actually lose the race going up the hill. The race is really won in the last 40 or 50 meters. I just stayed on Andrew’s [Bumbalough] shoulder going up the hill and was able to have a strong kick at the end.”
True is now a three-time national champion on the roads, with previous wins in 2011 at the 5 km and 10 km distances. Up next for True will be the USA 10 Mile Championships in Minneapolis October 7.
“These road races are a different atmosphere than the typical track race,” True said. “You have a much larger crowd because there are a lot more average Joes out there running, and the whole feel and commodore is really nice. You have people of all abilities out there competing, and it is a really festive atmosphere.”
Now in its 11th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on www.usatf.org. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.