In past years, many of the below would have made the top 10 best moments.
* At the Boston Indoor Games on February 6, two-time Olympic 1500m medalist Bernard Lagat, 35, led from the front to win the 5000 in 13:11.50 to break Galen Rupp’s one-year-old U.S. record by nearly 7 seconds. Rupp also broke his PR with a solid 13:14.21 to finish fourth.
* Iowa State Senior Lisa Koll, at the Stanford Invitational in March, crushed the NCAA 10,000 meter record with her winning 31:18.07 (previous record was 31:25.45 by Sally Kipyego of Texas Tech). Koll became the 6th fastest U.S. woman at the distance all-time.
* At the Herculis Meeting in Monaco last July, 2008 Olympian Shannon Rowbury finishes third in 8:31.38 for 3000 meters to become the second fastest U.S. woman all-time; only Mary Decker Slaney is faster.
* In August at the DN Galan Meet in Stockholm, Chris Solinsky finishes 5th in another sub-13 for 5000 meters in 12:55.53, a PR and second fastest American all-time. Later in August at Weltklasse in Zürich, Solinsky ran another sub-13 to become the first American to record three sub-13 minute 5000m in a season.
* In late June, Geoff Roes shatters Western States 100 Mile record with his 15:07:04. Anton Krupicka’s runner-up 15:13:52 was also under the old record (15:36:27, Scott Jurek, 2004).
* In early September, Bernard Lagat used his lethal kick to sweep the 3000m and 5000m at the IAAF/VTB Bank Continental Cup (former World Cup). Lagat also became the first athlete to win three different events (also 1500m in 2002) at the competition.
* Michael Wardian took the individual bronze medal, leading the U.S. men’s squad to a team silver medal Sunday at the IAU 100K World Championships in Gibraltar on November 7.
* At World Mountain Running Championships hosted by Slovenia in September, the U.S. men’s team won the silver medal – their highest placing ever at the Worlds.
* At the Prefontaine Classic in early July, Shalane Flanagan finished second in the 5000m (14:49.08). Amy Begley also cracked the 15-minute barrier in a PR 14:56.72, good for fifth.
* For the first time, Molly Huddle and Lisa Koll broke 15 minutes for 5000 meters in 14:51.84 (#4 U.S. woman) and 14:55.74 (#7), respectively, at Meeting Areva in Paris.
* At the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in October, Desiree Davila finished fourth in 2:26:20 to become the fourth fastest U.S. woman over 26.2 miles.
* At the Fortis Rotterdam Marathon last April, Magdalena Lewy Boulet finished second in 2:26:22 to become the fourth fastest U.S. woman for the distance (at the time).
* With his 2:10:36, Brett Gotcher produced the 4th fastest U.S. debut marathon at the Chevron Houston Marathon in January, while 2008 Olympic 10,000m bronze medalist Shalane Flanagan won the USA Half-Marathon title in 1:09:41, in her 13.1 mile debut.
* At the 25th Marathon des Sables, a 151 mile, six day endurance race across the Sahara in Morocco last April, Michael Wardian finished third in 23 hours, 1 minute, 3 seconds, the best place ever by an American male at the event.
* Missouri prep Emily Sisson broke the national high school 5000m at the IAAF World Junior Championships in Canada with her 15:48.91 to take sixth. The previous HSR was 15:52.88 by Caitlin Chock at the World Juniors in Italy 2004.
* Dan Huling became the fifth fastest U.S. steeplechaser with his 8:13.29 – good for 4th overall – at the Athletissima Meet in Lausanne, Switzerland in early July.
* Jamie Donaldson broke her course record and three-peated at the challenging AdventureCORPS Badwater Ultramarathon (135 mile) in 26:16:12. She was third overall.
* Houston awarded 2012 U.S. Men’s and Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials; the first time a city will host both races at the same Olympic Trials.
* At the NCAA Indoor Championships, Angela Bizzarri of Illinois edged another rising young star Lisa Koll of Iowa State to win the 3000 meters in 8:57.40 to 8:57.52.
* The masterful running of Linda Somers Smith, Joan Benoit Samuelson, Mbarak Hussein and Doug Winn.
* Renowned distance running coach Joe Vigil was honored at his alma mater Adams State College, where he coached and taught for nearly three decades, with a tribute and an unveiling of a life-sized bronze statue in November.
* Although the mile is not a distance event, it is worth noting that Bernard Lagat won his record 8th Millrose Games Wanamaker Mile on January 29 in 3:56.34.