Passing of the torch for Elite Mile
A new champion will be crowned in the elite men’s and women’s divisions at the Butterfield Front Street Mile tomorrow night.
Freddie Evans, the event chairman, has confirmed that 2019 winners Ethan Davenport and Heather Kampf will not be returning to defend their titles.
“None of the defending champions are here in the elite mile, so it’s wide open and up for grabs,” he said.
Davenport, from Toronto, Canada, made a triumphant debut last year, winning in 4min 20.20sec.
Kampf, of the United States, romped to an unprecedented fifth title in 4:50.26.
Meanwhile, Patrick Casey, also of the US, has emerged as a firm men’s favourite and will arrive in blistering form having recently broken through the four-minute mile barrier.
“Casey just ran 3;55, so he’s good and fresh and is the favourite,” Evans said.
Casey’s compatriot, Harun Abda, Andres Arroyo, of Puerto Rico, and Olympian Michael Rimmer, of Britain, are also among the pre-race favourites.
Bermudian Dage Minors, the 2018 winner, Alfredo Santana, of Puerto Rico, Dey Dey, of Sudan, and Ethiopians Temesgen Habtemariam Bekele, Abu Kebede Diriba and Abdulmenan Kasim Gelatu make up the rest of a fiercely competitive 12-man men’s field.
Among the favourites for Kampf’s vacant title in the elite women’s race is Eilish McColgan, the two-times Olympian and daughter of Olympic silver medal-winner Liz McColgan.
She will be joined by Nuhamin Bogae Ashame. “She just ran in the New York Armory Indoor 300 metres in 9:19,” Evans said of Ashame. “That’s just hot; she is going to be right there [in contention tomorrow].”
Others expected to be the thick in the hunt for the women’s title are 800 metres specialist Charlene Lipsey, who was part of the victorious US 4x800 team at the 2017 IAAF World Relays in Nassau, Bahamas, and Rolanda Bell, who has competed many times in Bermuda and will be a familiar sight for local spectators.
A cash prize of $1,500 will be up for the grabs for the winners, with $500 on offer for second place and $250 for third.
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