Centrowitz takes mile, Felix and De Grasse win sprints

Sat Feb 20, 2016 7:42pm EST
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By Larry Fine

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Matthew Centrowitz surged to victory with a final-lap burst to repeat as Wanamaker Mile winner, while elite sprinters Allyson Felix and Andre De Grasse powered to wins at the 109th Millrose Games on Saturday.

Centrowitz, feeling sub-par due to congestion, laid back behind New Zealand rival Nick Willis before charging past at the gun for the final lap to win in a meet record 3:50.63 for a 2016 indoor best.

"Caught a little something this week, but still wanted to defend my title." Centrowitz said. "I couldn't attack it like I wish I could've until I had to."

Willis, the 2008 Olympic 1500 meters silver medallist, repeated his runner-up finish to Centrowitz from last year in 3:51.06 for his third second to go with a pair of thirds in Wanamaker bids.

Shannon Rowbury won the women's mile by nearly two seconds, clocking 4:24.39.

Felix and DeGrasse, sprinters with high Olympic expectations, were unhappy with their starts in the 60-metre dashes yet emerged victorious on the fast Armory track.

Four-times Olympic champion and nine-times world champion Felix was taking a break from arduous training in her quest for a rare 200-400m double at the Rio Olympics.

"This was about working on my start which still needs more work," said Felix, who won in 7.15 seconds, five-hundredths of a second ahead of world champion long jumper Tianna Bartoletta.   Continued...

Feb 20, 2016; New York, NY, USA; Matthew Centrowitz (USA) takes a victory lap after winning the Wanamaker Mile in 3:50.63 during the 109th Millrose Games at The Armory. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports