World 50km walk champion Robert Heffernan was denied a dream New York debut by Sweden’s Andreas Gustafsson at the Millrose Games on Saturday.
Despite recording the third fastest time ever for the mile walk at the prestigious track meet, Heffernan was denied by an even more impressive walk from the Swede, whose time of 5:34.45 was just short of the world record for the distance indoors (5:33.54). Jonathan Hallman finished a distant third.
“I very happy with the time,” Heffernan said. “They were second and third in Millrose history only behind a world record. I was hoping to get inside the 5:40s and I finished better than that. So I can’t complain. It was enjoyable being here.”
Heffernan’s next stop after his return to Cork is an event in Switzerland before he begins a 22-day stint of altitude training in Johannesburg.
“The minimum necessary to train at altitude is 22 days. I don’t want to be there any longer than is necessary with the new baby. If you’re not happy when you’re away, it makes it that much harder.”
Meanwhile, the almost capacity crowd at the Armory in Washington Heights was given good value for money when Bernard Lagat broke his third national record at the venue in three years, winning the 2,000m in 4:54.74. American Will Leer won the NYRR Men’s Wanamaker Mile, while local teen star Mary Cain won the Mile for Women.
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