Senior sociology major Lucy Van Dalen will represent Stony Brook’s indoor track and field program in the 105th Millrose Games, held in the New Balance Track and Field Center at the New York City Armory on February 11.
Competing in the inaugural New York Road Runner’s Wanamaker Metric Mile for Women, the All-American and native of Wanganui, New Zealand, will be the sole collegiate athlete racing among professionals, including Jenny Simpson, the world record holder in the 1500-meter.
“Being invited to the Millrose Games is a really good opportunity to get a fast race in with amazing competition before the NCAAs in March,” Van Dalen said. “It’s a really great opportunity, and I feel very honored to be able to run at the meet.”
Van Dalen finished second in the 1500-meter, equivalent to the Wanamaker Metric Mile, in last year’s NCAA Outdoor Championships, with a time of 4 minutes 15.33 seconds. Her personal best is a 4:11.59, which she set in Padova, Italy, in 2011.
“We’re getting ready for the NCAAs at the beginning of March,” said Stony Brook Head Coach Andy Ronan. “So I think the Millrose Games will be a good stepping stone to that, but I do think she’s in very good shape at the moment.”
One of the oldest racing events in the world, the Millrose Games will feature some of the nation’s most elite athletes, including those in New York’s high schools. Invited based on past seeded times, runners compete in events ranging from the Sprint Medley Relay and hurdles to the high jump and pole vault.
High school athletes will mix with Olympians, as current Outdoor High Jump World Champion Jesse Williams and reigning Outdoor and Indoor Long Jump Champion Brittney Reese will compete in this year’s Games on their way to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
Van Dalen, however, will count the Millrose Games as one more stop on her way to a hopeful national title at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship in Des Moines, Iowa.
“Running is really unpredictable, and I’ll be racing against some very talented women,” Van Dalen said. “So really it comes down to who has the best day on the day of the meet, but I definitely will be up for the challenge.”
The Millrose Games will be held beginning at 9 a.m. on February 11, at the New Balance Track and Field Center at the Armory in New York City.