Ivy Leaguers are about to jump onto the world stage as there are two Heps’ entrants in the IAAF World Relays, a first-time event taking place in Nassau, The Bahamas, this weekend and two more slated for the upcoming Pre Classic, a Diamond League event held in Eugene, Ore.
Yale graduate Kate Grace and Cornell alum Morgan Uceny will be featured on the Team USA 4×1,500-meter relay along with Brenda Martinez, Katie Mackey, Heather Kampf and Sara Vaughn. The gold-medal team will take home $50,000 in prize money, but can double the winnings with a world record.
The World Relays — to be contested at the new 15,000-seat Thomas A. Robinson Stadium — will feature both the men and women from across the globe competing in the 4×1, 4×2, 4×4, 4×8 and 4×15. Uceny is also entered in the 4×8 pool with the likes of Martinez, Ajee Wilson, Chanelle Price and Charlene Lipsey.
The Pre Classic will serve as a showcase for Dartmouth graduate Ben True and former Princeton star Ashley Higginson. True will face eight runners who have dipped below 13 minutes in the 5,000-meter run. In that group are two Ethiopians, four Kenyans, a Bahrainian and Bernard Lagat of the U.S. Among the well known North American stars are True, Chris Derrick, Ryan Hill and Hassan Mead of the U.S. and Canadian Cam Levins.
Joining Higginson in the steeplechase are four sub-9:10 Africans — including Kenyan Milcah Chemos — and American Emma Coburn, who ran to a stunning victory in Shanghai last week. She took an early lead and simply kept the international field at bay, finishing in 9:19.80 — the second-fastest time in U.S. history behind Jenny Simpson.