We did say yesterday that the Fastrack National Invitational wasn’t going to be slouch. HepsNation athletes got a number of potential NCAA qualifiers, new record book entries, and one IAAF World Championship qualifier.
Probably the headliner was the men’s mile, where the new Ocean Breeze Athletic Facility got their first ever sub-4 mile times, and they were done by two Ivy Leaguers. Cornell’s James Gowan and Columbia’s Rob Napolitano ran the 459th and 460th sub-4 mile times ever. Gowans set a new facility record and the second fastest time in Ivy League history, 3:58.24, while Napolitano was steps behind him in second place, his 3:58.98 tied for the 6th fastest time in Ivy League history. Their times do place them among potential NCAA qualification as top 16 make the cut, but there is still a lot of racing to be had and 3:58 has been the average cut-off time these last few years since the talent depth in this country has gotten insane. Future Ivy milers – if you want to be among the top 10 all time, you need to run faster than 4:00.05 now!
Another group who is on the cusp of making the NCAA cut – the Penn’s distance medley relay team. Last night, they were one of two teams who finished in less than 9:40. The quartet of Chris Hatler, Jeff Wiseman, Elias Graca, and Thomas Awad finished second overall in 9:38.81 – the 10th fastest time in conference history. The time also ranks #13 in the NCAA, but only the top 12 relays make the cut. The event winners from last night – Villanova – ran 9:30.66 that sits them at #5.
Princeton’s Elizabeth Bird is also on the edge of qualifying – her winning 3,000m time last night of 9:18.42 ranks her #16 (the final NCAA spot) but I don’t think she’ll stay in that spot at the end of the weekend as the Husky Invitational is projected to produce a few NCAA qualifiers, and their 3,000m race is on Saturday.
If Princeton’s Adam Bragg only had indoor eligibility remaining… last night, he won the Pole Vault Invitational section with a new all-time best of 18-06 1/2. No eligible Ivy has yet to clear 18-00 during the indoor season, and only two other men – Penn’s Mamadou Johnson and Harvard’s Nico Weiler – have ever done it outdoors, but not as high as Bragg last night. As a result, Bragg’s clearance is an ALL-TIME HEPS RECORD (among undergrads and graduates). The outdoor season is definitely getting more exciting now.
Oh, and the IAAF World Qualifier… congrats to Cornell alum Bruno Hortelano-Roig. He won the 60m Invitational last night in 6.64, a new best by 0.02 and surpassing the IAAF standard by 0.01. He will be representing Spain in this March’s IAAF World Indoor Track & Field Championships.
Other notable finishes from last night:
Full results can be found on TFRRS.
We will discuss a lot of other history that was made last night at the BU Valentine’s Invitational and Husky Invitational when those recaps get posted.
Photo from Ocean Breeze AC Twitter account