Minneapolis, Minn.: May 11, 2017 -Stillwater native Ben Blankenship and Emily Lipari of Brighton, Mass. won professional races at the 12th running of the Medtronic TC 1 Mile Thursday evening.
Blankenship, a 2016 Olympian who finished 9th in the Rio 1500-meter final, earned a runaway victory in 4:01.0, despite slowing down to celebrate his second straight Medtronic TC 1 Mile title in the finishing stretch. Last year, Blankenship set the event record at 3:55.8.
Daniel Herrara of Portland, Ore. finished second in 4:06.2; Chad Noelle of Greenville, S. C. was third at 4:06.4. Former event record holder Nick Willis, the two-time Olympic 1500-meter medalist from New Zealand, finished 10th in 4:11.6.
"Anytime I come back home, I really want to dominate, thatís my only concern," Blankenship said. "Itís really how big a margin can I win by and how can I conduct that. We played a little cat and mouse at the beginning Ė Nick Willis and I go way back Ė so we know a little bit about each other, and I know I donít want to be in the last 10 meters shoulder to shoulder with him."
In the womenís race, Lipari edged Sara Vaughn of Boulder, Colo. to earn victory in her first Medtronic TC 1 Mile appearance. Lipari clocked 4:34.8; Vaughn finished in 4:34.9. Becca Addison of Ann Arbor, Mich. was third in 4:40.2.
"Unfortunately it wasnít the record type of day," the former Villanova star said, alluding to nightís breezy conditions. "Iím happy to come off with a win and be really competitive, and use this race to propel me into the track season."
More than 2000 runners participated in the event which raced around Gold Medal Park and finished under the Guthrie Theaterís Endless Bridge in downtown Minneapolis.
Blankenship and Lipari won $5000 each for their wins. The race was the second stop on the 2017 Bring Back the Mile Tour, a nationwide Grand Prix with a $10,000 grand prize purse.
Complete results can be found at TCMEvents.org.
About Twin Cities In Motion (TCM): Twin Cities In Motion organizes the regionís premier running events, including the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, a Top 10 U.S. Marathon. With a mission of promoting healthy lifestyles through running events and community outreach, TCM contributes a portion of every race dollar to local youth and professional athletes and helps raise more than $950,000 annually with its charity partners. For more information, visit us at TCMEvents.org, or find us on Facebook and on Twitter @tcmarathon.