Thursday, June 16, 2016

Jaret Carpenter Tests Himself at the Mile

As the field ran down the backstretch for the first time in the 1600 at the MSHSL track championships on Saturday, Wayzata Jaret Carpenter saw and opening between the field and the inside of the track's first lane.  He shot through it, passing everyone on the inside, and all the rest of the runners saw in the rest of the race was his back.

Following his pre-race plan of running 62 second laps for the 1600 Carpenter completed the 3200/1600 double, slowing to 63s on the last two laps to post a winning time of 4:10.89.  It was the most comfortable effort he's had this year on the Hamline track, having run under nine minutes for 3200 at the Elite Meet and then repeating the 3200 win on the opening day of the MSHSL championships in hot, humid conditions in 9:10.46.

Both were solo efforts where Carpenter took off early and was never threatened. Stillwater's Eli Krahn, who did the 3200/1600 double as a freshman and sophomore in 2013-14, said that Carpenter was able to dominate this year because he could adapt to any pace.  Going hard from the beginning.  Throwing in 60 second laps during the middle of the race.

Tomorrow, Carpenter will get his chance to test himself against high school milers from across the country in the "Dream Mile" in Somerville, MA.  In a year when several high school runners have run under four minutes for the mile, the fastest opponent in Carpenter's race, Thomas Ratcliffe  has run 4:01.5.  When asked what he could run in a fast field, Carpenter said he was aiming for 62 second laps for a 4:08.

The weather, as always, will have something to do with the time.  Whatever the conditions, Carpenter will have an opportunity to race among some of the best high school milers and see what he can do.  While longer races are more favored.  He lists the 5K as his favorite distance right now.  He ran 14:58 to win the NXN Heartland XC title in 2015 and was fourth at NXN Nationals.  Tomorrow he'll get to see how fast he can go in the mile.
Photo by Gene Niemi

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