Flanagan's 31:04.85 LEads Excellent Distance Marks At Stanford - RRW

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Mar 30th 2013, 3:32pm | 129545 views
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By David Monti
(c) 2013 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved - Used with permission.

(30-Mar) -- Shalane Flanagan's world-leading 10,000m time of 31:04.85 was the highlight of last night's Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto.  Once again, the reliably dry, cool and windless weather played a big role helping athletes to run fast and achieve all-important IAAF World Championships qualifying times.

"The Stanford magic never fails," tweeted Dan Lilot, an athlete agent based in nearby San Francisco.  "Sun is down, not a breath of wind, just in time for the fast 5000s."

In the top section of the women's 5000m, 2012 California International Marathon champion Alisha Williams, an accountant from Colorado Springs, showed off her track chops, winning in a world-leading and personal best 15:09.73.  Her time was well under the IAAF World Championships "A" standard of 15:18.00 giving her a big advantage going into the USA Outdoor Outdoor Track & Field Championships in June in Des Moines.

"140 characters isn't enough to express how grateful I am to all of the people/sponsors who have helped keep the dream alive!" Williams wrote on her Twitter account.  "Love you all!"

Behind her, Kenyans Betsy Saina (Iowa State) and Aliphine Tuliamuk-Bolton (Wichita State) finished second, and fourth in 15:12.05 and 15:18.86, respectively, essentially guaranteeing them spots in the NCAA Championships in June.  Finishing between them was the up-and-coming Chelsea Reilly, the reigning USA 10-K and 3000m indoor champion.  Reilly, 23, who runs for the Bay Area Track Club but does not have a commercial sponsor, clocked a career best 15:13.24.  Olympian Lisa Uhl finished fifth in 15:29.64.

In the top section of the men's 5000m, Jamaica's Kemoy Campbell ran a national record 13:32.82 in the vest of the University of Arkansas.  Andrew Poore (13:33.03) and Andy Bayer (13:34.82) finished second and third.  None of them came close to the World Championships "A" qualifier of 13:15.00.

"It's pretty exciting to have the national record," Campbell told Flotrack in his post-race interview.

Flanagan's run was remarkable.  Running nearly all of the race alone, the 31 year-old from Portland, Ore., finished well clear of training partner Kara Goucher, who finished second in 31:46.64, just outside of the IAAF World Championships "A" standard of 31:45.00.  Both she and Goucher are in their final stages of preparation for the Boston Marathon, a race which is particularly important to Flanagan who grew up in a Boston suburb.

"Kara and I didn't really know what to expect tonight," Flanagan told Flotrack.  "We're in marathon training, we're at altitude, we haven't done any 10K-specific work.  So, I'll take 31:04, or whatever it was. That's solid."

Behind the two marathoners, the University of Oregon's Jordan Hasay made her 10,000m debut, clocking 32:46.68, an early NCAA-leading time.

"Coach told me I just needed to focus for length of one "Friends" episode," Hasay joked through her Twitter account.

In other events, John Gilbertson won the top section of the men's 10,000m in 28:30.35 over the University of Oregon's Parker Stinson (28:34.71).  Oklahoma's Riley Masters won the men's 1500m in 3:40.77; Utah's Amanda Mergaert won the women's section in 4:17.22.  The steeplechase wins went to Louisville's Mattias Wolter in 8:43.73 and Oregon's Alexi Pappas in a world-leading and career best of 9:46.73.

Athletes will return to Stanford en masse on Sunday, April 28, for the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational, one of the world's most important time-qualifying meets for distance runners.  Last year's meet lasted nine hours and produced six world-leading times.


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