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Willis, Webb to Battle in Boston

1/18/2011
 
INDIANAPOLIS - Olympic silver medalist Nick Willis from New Zealand and American recorder-holder Alan Webb will match-up in the mile Saturday, February 5 at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston, Mass.  Also added to the field is the nation’s top high school miler from 2010, Lukas Verzbicas.The 16th-annual meet, the second stop in USA Track & Field’s Visa Championship Series, begins at 5:00 p.m., at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center at Roxbury Community College.  Tickets and meet information can be found on-line at www.nbindoorgrandprix.com or by calling 1-877-TIX-TRAC.

Willis, who in 2008 became New Zealand’s first male track athlete in 32 years to bring home an Olympic medal, is also the 2006 Commonwealth Games champion. Last year, Willis added the New Zealand indoor 1,500m record to his own outdoor record, and then took bronze in the 1,500m at the Commonwealth Games.  Willis also broke the New Zealand and NCAA indoor records for 3,000 meters at this event in 2004 while competing for the University of Michigan and has won the mile in Boston in each of the last two years.    
 
Webb, who won at Boston in 2007, has recorded the fastest time ever by an American for the outdoor mile at 3:46.91 and is continuing his return from Achilles surgery in 2010. Lukas Verzbicas, the two-time Footlocker Cross Country Champion from Orland Hills, Illinois, led the nation at this distance outdoors in 2010 (4:04.38). Showing great success at a wide range of disciplines, Verzbicas is the National High School Indoor Record Holder at 5,000m (14:18.42), and is also one of the world’s top junior triathletes, having won the 2010 USA Triathlon Flatland Junior Elite Cup.  
 
Other anticipated events will include the women’s pole vault, which will feature Olympic Silver Medalist and American record-holder, Jennifer Suhr, as well as a 60m dash match-up between former World champion and Olympic medalist Lauryn Williams and Olympic finalist Marshevet Myers. Kalkidan Gezahegne from Ethiopia, the World Indoor junior record-holder at 1,500m and the mile and the 2010 World Indoor Champion at 1500m, will return to Boston looking to add the mile to the 3,000m title she won here in 2010.

For more information on USA Track & Field’s Visa Championship Series, visit: http://www.usatf.org/events/2011/VisaChampionshipSeries/index.asp


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