The final competitors list for the Hamline Elite Meet (Presented by Nike) has been announced on the event's web-site. All the events look deliciously strong -- it's an elite meet after all! -- but the Boys 3200 meter run is particularly mouth-watering. (I'm an old distance guy, though, it should be noted.)
Toeing the line in the 3200, and perhaps taking aim at Mike Torchia's meet record 8:59.18 from last year, are 2006 MSHSL Class AA 3200m champ Elliott Heath of Winona, 2006 Class AA Cross Country champ Hassan Mead of Minneapolis South, 2005 Class AA 3200m champ Rob Finnerty of Burnsville, and Edina stars Tom Burke and TC Lumbar who have clocked 9:22 and 9:29 already this year. Missing, however, is the young season's fastest two-miler: Ben Blankenship of Stillwater, who ran 9:15 last week.
Other headliners include: Class AA 400m champ Quinn Evans of Mounds View, teammate Sean Duling, the Class AA 110m hurdles champ (who's only seeded #4!), and Class AA Long Jump champ B.J. Otto of Hill-Murray. On the girls side, cross country champs Alex Gits of Edina (Class AA) and Claire Richardson of Blake (Class A) will duel over 3200m.
Don't Touch That Dial -- Down the Backstretch will be reporting live the Elite Meet. We'll post real-time updates, results, and (if everything goes well) video from the meet. If you can't be at the corner of Snelling and Taylor in St. Paul on Friday night, pull up a chair in front of DtB and "watch" the meet with us!