Torrence, Pierce Will Defend U.S. Road Mile Titles

Reigning U.S. road mile champion Anna Pierce will return to Minnesota on May 12 to defend her title. Photo: PhotoRun.net

Reigning U.S. road mile champion Anna Pierce will return to Minnesota on May 12 to defend her title. Photo: PhotoRun.net

Over $22K in prize money up for grabs in Minneapolis.

From: RunningUSA Wire

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Two-time race winner David Torrence and 2008 Olympian Anna Pierce will return to defend their USA 1 Mile Road titles at the Medtronic TC 1 Mile in downtown Minneapolis on Thursday evening, May 12. The pair will battle some of the nation’s the top male and female milers for $22,500 in prize money, plus a pair of $10,000 time bonuses.

The Medtronic TC 1 Mile, which features an evening of races for runners of all ages and abilities, will host the USA 1 Mile Road Championship for the third-straight year. Racing kicks off at 6:50pm on Thursday, May 12, culminating with the USA Championships races at 7:53pm (women) and 8:03pm (men).

Torrence, 25, the men’s record-holder on the Nicollet Mall course, is the lone runner to break four-minutes in the six-year history of the event. The San Francisco, Calif. resident clocked 3 minutes, 59.3 seconds for his victory in 2009. Last year, Torrence confirmed his mastery of the race winning in 4:04.0.

Torrence’s 2009 barrier-breaking win in 2009 kept his budding racing career alive, thanks to the $10,000 “Time Bounty” he earned for his sub-4:00 winning time.

“It was probably one of the biggest breaks for my career as a post-collegiate athlete,” Torrence said. “At the time, I was unsponsored and living off of prize money from races. By crossing the line first under 4 minutes, I received the generous $10,000 bonus that essentially funded my running career for the next year. The financial security that winning the race brought allowed me to train full time and improve drastically.”

To-date, the $10,000 women’s time bonus for a winning time sub-4:32.0 has yet to be claimed. Shannon Rowbury, the 2009 USA champion, has come closest, setting the course record at 4:33.4. Defending champion Pierce, 27, however, has her sights set on a both a win and a course record time in 2011. She won last year’s race in 4:34.6.

“Last year was my first time running the one mile race in Minneapolis, so I understand the course much better this year,” the Mammoth Lakes, Calif. resident said. “I’m anticipating a good race and hope to break the course record. It was a very fun race and I am looking forward to coming back to run it again this year! I was impressed with the waves of runners and the crowds were so supportive.”

The professional USA 1 Mile Road Championship races are just two of seven waves of racing taking place on May 12. Starting with the Friends & Family Wave for runners of all ages and abilities and including races for corporate teams and masters runners, the evening offers opportunity for runner of all abilities. The festive Nicollet Mall atmosphere – where people enjoying downtown Minneapolis nightlife cheer runners along the route – makes the Medtronic TC 1 Mile a unique event on the Minnesota and national running calendar.

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