asics Greenville Track Club-ELITE - a post-collegiate, Olympic-development program
ASICS Greenville Track Club-ELITE's Austin Steagall ran to victory in the 3,000-meter Steeplechase on Friday in the Tennessee Relays at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. The 2016 NCAA Division II runner-up was running in only his fourth career attempt at the grueling event when he stepped on the starting line at the Tom Black Track. Under sunny skies, but with a blustering wind, Steagall broke into the lead immediately after the starter's gun sounded and covered the first lap in under 68 seconds. Each lap was actually longer than 400 meters due to the water jump located on the outside of the eighth lane. Although the extremely fast first two laps began to take their toll after 2,000 meters Austin's lead was never challenged as he won in 9:09.39 and had an eight-second margin of victory.
Stegall's teammate Mark Leininger came close to adding a win in the 5,000 meters later in the evening, but came up just less than a second short (.63 sec) as he placed second with a time of 14:23.31. Virginia Tech's Jack Joyce won with a time of 14:22.69. Leininger's teammate Ryan Root also competed and ran 14:49.13 for 21st place.
ASICS GTC-ELITE's Kimberly Ruck and Alison Parris took the lead after the first lap and took turns leading the field in the women's 5,000. Ruck continued to lead until the 12th circuit, but was out-kicked over the final 300 meters by Ohio State's Christine Frederick who won in 16:42.89. Ruck finished second at 16:49.18 and Parris fourth in 16:51.34.
GTC-ELITE produced four qualifiers for the 2016 USA Olympic Trials Marathon in Los Angeles and is sponsored by ASICS, the 45-year-old Greenville Track Club, Greenville Health System, ScanSource, Joy Real Estate, the Bare Minimum Track Club, generous individual contributors and partnerships with Performance Therapy, Carolina Spine and Rehab, Soleus Running Watches, Boston Bill Sunglasses, Roll Recovery, FinalSurge, The ATI Running Academy, ElliptiGO, and NormaTec Recovery Boots.