Gabriele Anderson Wins Minnesota Mile in Course Record Time of 4:21
DULUTH — Team USA Minnesota's Gabriele Anderson won the seventh annual Minnesota Mile in downtown Duluth Sunday, shattering the course record by more than 14 seconds. Her time was 4:21.3 with teammate Heather Kampf finishing second in 4:27.1, which also broke the course record of 4:35.60.
Anderson went to the lead at about 400 meters after a couple of other women went out in front. "It's hard to know exactly where everyone is when running on the roads, but I realized nobody was going with me at about halfway thanks to some of the spectators on the course," Anderson said. "I was out a little faster than I expected to be at that point so from there I relaxed a little and tried to get ready for a strong last 400 to maintain the lead.
"It was definitely one of those special days where everything came together for a fast time. I felt great out there and really wanted to get some redemption after a bummer of a race on Friday in Brussels where I fell. I also wanted to take advantage of the conditions - a fairly nice tailwind - and the first half of the course being a generous downhill. I wanted to take a shot at the course record but I didn't expect to break it by as much as I did."
Anderson competed in her last track race of the outdoor season in Brussels on Sept. 6. She left that city late Saturday morning, Sept. 7, went through Atlanta on her way to Minneapolis and arrived at the MSP Airport at 6:15 p.m. Her fiance' Justin Grunewald picked her up and they drove straight to Duluth.
"It was a long trip but it went pretty smoothly," she said. "I think it's a lot easier to come this direction as opposed to going East. My body felt like it was afternoon rather than morning, which is helpful for me because I am not a morning runner at all."
At the IAAF Diamond League meet in Brussels on Sept. 6, Anderson finished 12th in the 1500 meters with a time of 4:16.20 (her best time in the 1500m this season is 4:01.48). "The race in Brussels was very disappointing because I felt really ready to run a great race," she said. "Unfortunately it turned out to be another tactical 1500m going out at a modest pace through 800m which caused an anxious bunched-up field. At the bell it seemed like some contact between runners in front of me was causing problems but I thought I was okay in my spot.
"I was just waiting to make a move until the backstretch but that was too late. Two runners went down right in front of me and I had nowhere to go but down. Fortunately I wasn't hurt and I was able to turn my frustration into motivation for today's race in Duluth."
Anderson's final competition of the year will be in New York City where she will run the 5th Avenue Mile on Sept. 22. "One of the reasons I wanted to come and race today in Duluth was to get some practice running on the road before 5th Avenue," she said. "I'm excited to contend for the win in New York to cap off a great 2013 season."
About Team USA Minnesota
Team USA Minnesota is based in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Formed in 2001, the purpose of the training center is to improve the competitiveness of post-collegiate American distance running and to develop Olympians. The athletes are coached by Dennis Barker, head cross country and track coach at Augsburg College in Minneapolis. Team USA Minnesota's major sponsor is Life Time Run (www.lifetimerun.com) and its silver sponsor is Twin Cities In Motion (www.tcmevents.org). It is also supported by the New York Road Runners and the USA Distance Project. For more information, visit the team's web site at www.teamusaminnesota.org.