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Grand Blue Mile tapped to host 2013-2014 USA Men’s & Women’s 1 Mile Road Championships

INDIANAPOLIS – Grand Blue Mile (GBM) and USA Track & Field (USATF) officials today announced a two-year agreement that will bring the USA Men’s & Women’s 1 Mile Road Championships to Des Moines, Iowa, in 2013 and 2014 as part of the USA Running Circuit. The championships will be contested as part of the Grand Blue Mile, an annual event sponsored by Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield and the Drake Relays.

“We are excited to add the USA 1 Mile Road Championships to the Midwest’s premier community street run,” said Chris Verlengia, Wellmark senior sponsorships consultant. “The Grand Blue Mile has continued to grow because of its appeal to runners of all ages and abilities – beginners, teams and professional athletes have embraced the event and the city of Des Moines and we are confident America’s top runners will love the event as well.”

More than 4,100 people participated in the 2012 GBM among the elite, competitive, recreational run/walk and corporate team categories. Registrations for the 2013 event, scheduled for April 23, are on track to meet or exceed that number with more than 2,500 early registrations already received. The unique one-mile u-shaped course loops through the streets of downtown Des Moines, finishing in downtown’s Western Gateway.

“We are very pleased to add the Grand Blue Mile to the USA Running Circuit” said Max Siegel, CEO of USA Track & Field. “With a talented field of professional milers and a unique environment for spectators we look forward to having the USA 1 Mile Championships in Des Moines prior to the USA Outdoor Championships in June."

The GBM has already hosted several top national and international athletes during its 3-year history, including Sara Hall who established a women’s course record of 4:45 in 2012, and Peter Van Der Westhuizen who established the men’s course record of 4:02, also in 2012. Several 2012 Olympians are expected to participate in the 2013 event and will be announced closer to the event date.

Visit for more information on the USA 1 Mile Championships.

About USA Track & Field
USA Track & Field (USATF) is the National Governing Body for track and field, long-distance running and race walking in the United States. USATF encompasses the world's oldest organized sports, some of the most-watched events of Olympic broadcasts, the country’s #1 high school and junior high school participatory sport and more than 30 million adult runners in the United States. For more information on USATF, visit <a data-cke-saved-href="" href="" "="">

About the Grand Blue Mile
The Grand Blue Mile is an annual one-mile fitness run/walk sponsored by Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield, in partnership with the Drake Relays, to engage individuals at all stages of fitness, encourage healthy habits and empower positive change. The annual wellness event includes recreational, competitive and invitational events featuring a field of elite male and female track and field athletes from around the world. Proceeds from the event benefit Iowa Kidstrong, Inc., an organization dedicated to promoting healthy, active lifestyles among youth. For more information about the Grand Blue Mile, visit

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