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B.A.A. Reveals Invitational Mile Line-Up


For Immediate Release: Thursday, April 9, 2009

Olympians, Record-Holders to Line Up for
Inaugural B.A.A. Invitational Mile
19 top professional milers, local scholastic stars will race the day before 113th Boston Marathon


Boston,
Mass. —  Six Olympians, a trio of national-record holders and a
three-time U.S. champion are among the professional athletes set to
compete in the debut of the B.A.A. Invitational Mile on April 19, the
Boston Athletic Association announced today.

The Invitational
Mile, to be held in conjunction with the inaugural B.A.A. 5K the day
before the 113th Boston Marathon, will feature mile races for
professional men and women, plus mile races for scholastic girls and
boys from Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, Newton,
Brookline and Boston – the eight cities and towns along the Boston
Marathon course. The races, which will be run criterium-style in the
Back Bay, will begin and end at the Boston Marathon finish line.

Headlining
the women’s professional mile will be 2008 Olympic bronze medalist
Shalane Flanagan, a native of Marblehead, Mass.  Flanagan, 27, won the
bronze medal at 10,000 meters in Beijing and holds four American
records.

Flanagan will be challenged by a trio of top American
milers: Anna Willard, a 2008 Olympian in the 3,000-meter steeplechase
and reigning U.S. Indoor Champion at 1,500 meters; Erin Donohue, a 2008
Olympian at 1,500 meters; and Lindsey Gallo, 1,500-meter runner-up at
the 2006 U.S. Outdoor Championships and 2009 Boston Indoor Games mile
champion. Willard is a native of Greenwood, Maine.

Challenging
them for the win will be Amy Mortimer, winner of the 2008 Falmouth
Mile; Michelle Sikes, who represented the U.S. at the 2007 World
Championships; Marina Muncan, the Serbian national-record holder; and
Carrie Tollefson, a 2004 Olympian at 1,500 meters.

Leading the
roster in the professional men’s race are Rob Myers, a three-time U.S.
Indoor Champion at 1,500 meters;  Ireland’s Alistair Cragg, a two-time
Olympian; and Adam Goucher, a 2000 Olympian and husband of Kara
Goucher, the top American woman in the field for the next day’s Boston
Marathon.

Providing tough competition will be Pablo Solares,
Mexico’s national-record holder at 1,500 meters; Jon Rankin, winner of
the 2008 Falmouth Mile; Steve Sherer, third at the 2008 U.S. indoor
championships; Darren Brown, former University of Texas star; Bret
Schoolmeester
, former standout at the University of Colorado; John
Richardson
, a top miler just out of the University of Kentucky; Patrick
Tarpy
, a local favorite from Providence; and Jonathon Blackledge of
Great Britain, who competes for Oxford University.

Total prize purse for professional miles is $14,500 divided equally between men and women, including $3,000 for the champion.

The
series of races in the B.A.A. Invitational Mile will begin with the
girls’ scholastic race at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, April 19, immediately after
the B.A.A. 5K, a new road race that will begin at 8 a.m. The mile will
follow a three-loop course, beginning on Boylston Street, left on
Dartmouth Street, left on Newbury Street, left on Exeter Street then
left onto Boylston. Both the 5K and Mile will begin on Boylston Street
near Copley Square Park, and end at the Boston Marathon finish line.
Registration for the 5K is available at www.baa.org; the field is
limited to 4,000 runners and is filling up fast.

Additional
information about the B.A.A. Invitational Mile, the B.A.A. 5K, the
Boston Marathon and the Boston Athletic Association can be found online
at www.baa.org.

About Boston Athletic Association
Established
in 1887, the Boston Athletic Association is a non-profit organization
with a mission of managing athletic events and promoting a healthy
lifestyle through sports, especially running. The B.A.A.’s Boston
Marathon is the world’s oldest annual marathon, and the organization
manages other local events, including the B.A.A. Half Marathon
presented by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund, and
supports comprehensive charity, youth, and year-round running programs.
Since 1986, the principal sponsor of the Boston Marathon has been John
Hancock Financial.

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