The 20-Block Sprint

Posted: 25 September by Brett Hoover in Cornell
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Former Cornell superstar Morgan Uceny has a chance to become the undisputed ‘queen of the street mile’ Sunday in New York City as she will compete in the Fifth Avenue Mile, a sprint alongside Central Park between roughly 80th and 60th Streets.

Back on Patriots’ Day in April, Uceny won the Boston Athletic Association Road Mile (in 4:43.0) and ever since she has been on a quick climb to world-class status in both the 800- and 1,500-meter runs.

The is the 30th running of the Fifth Avenue Mile and Aimee Berg of the Wall Street Journal wrote a wonderful piece on the first event in 1981, when Sydney Maree ran a still-standing record of 3:47.52.

Wrote Berg:

The reason the record remains, according to some of the elite athletes who ran the inaugural race in 1981, is because back then, no one had any idea what they were doing.

They’d never run a straight mile on a street, and they had no sense of pacing. So they went all-out ’til they crashed.

“We just wanted to see how fast we could run in a straight line,” said Ray Flynn, who placed fifth that year.

The women’s professional race is scheduled for 12:50 pm on Sunday, followed by the men’s event. You can watch it live online on the New York Road Runners website.


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