Shalane Flanagan and Amy Cragg have turned into quite the team.
“We literally do everything together,” Flanagan says.
But not so at the Suja Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon. The two decided to run their own race Sunday—and it was impressive, particularly for Flanagan.
The 34-year-old Flanagan ran a blazing time in San Diego, winning the women’s race in 1:07:51. It smashed her personal-best in the half marathon, and was the second-fastest half run by an American this year (behind Molly Huddle’s 1:07:41 at the NYC Half in March).
Cragg, who beat Flanagan at the U.S. Olympic Trials marathon in February, finished two minutes behind Flanagan on Sunday, but still ran a personal-best 1:09:51.
Their coach, Jerry Schumacher, was thrilled.
“For both of them to run PRs like that,” Schumacher said, “you come away knowing that I’m going in the right direction, and maybe something big is capable of happening in Rio. And that’s what you want.”
Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego will be the pair’s only race between February’s Olympic Trials and the Olympic marathon in August. At the Trials in Los Angeles, the two ran together for the first 25 miles, until they split up when Flanagan started having trouble with the heat. Cragg won the race, and Flanagan finished third—both securing an Olympic bid along with Desiree Linden.
The two have trained together this entire year, even going to Rio together in April to run on the Olympic marathon course. But on Sunday, they did their own thing.
“Amy and I have done some amazing workouts,” Flanagan said, “and we said, ‘You know, let’s see what we can do,’ and we ran our own race today.”
On the men’s side, Scott Smith won the half marathon in a time of 62:35, ahead of Daniel Teklebrhan (63:38) and Jeffrey Eggleston (63:48).