Saturday, February 3, 2018

Lady Seminole alum Colleen Quigley posts a 4:30.05 win in the Wanamaker Mile

On Saturday morning, 20 December 2016, Colleen Quigley won the women's 6K race at the USATF Club Cross-Country Championships in Tallahassee, Florida. Let's not call it an unexpected victory. The race was run on the Apalachee Regional Park Cross-Country Course, and Quigley was a Florida State University alumna. ARPXC had been her home course during her tenure on the Florida State Seminoles cross-country team--a tenure during which she collected three All-American honors in cross-country. Befitting a cross-country runner, Quigley's specialty in track had been the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Since leaving Florida State she had finished twelfth in the steeple at the 2015 (Beijing) World Championships, and eighth in the event at the 2016 Olympics (Rio).

Apalachee Regional Park Cross-Country Course

So when Tallahassee hosted the USATF Cross-Country Championships at Apalachee Regional Park on Saturday, 3 February 2018, you might have expected to see "Steeple Squig" back on the Seminoles' home course. Quigley had other plans though. That afternoon, after all the laurels had been awarded on the Tallahassee trails, Quigley stepped onto the boards of the Armory track in Manhattan. She left the track as the women's champion in the 93rd annual Wanamaker Mile, winning a photo-finish race in which she edged Kate Grace 4:30.05 to 4:30.08.

Department store magnate L. Rodman Wanamaker accomplished much in his lifetime, but he's probably best remembered for starting the Millrose Games (named for his estate) and their centerpiece event, the Wanamaker Mile. Sports fans who have never heard of Wanamaker's department stores have heard of the Wanamaker Mile. Track and field fans in particular can name at least a few Wanamaker Mile champions--Glenn Cunningham, Gil Dodds, Kip Keino, Marty Liquori, Eamonn Coghlan, Steve Scott, et al. And now Colleen Quigley is one of those champions.


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