BOSTON (Jan. 15) – Reigning Olympic bronze medalist and American Record Holder Shalane Flanagan will make her 2009 debut at the Reebok Boston Indoor Games on February 7th. Organizers also announced the addition of American record-holder Alan Webb and 2008 NCAA Cross Country Champion, Galen Rupp, to its featured list of stars for 2009.
Hailing from Marblehead, MA, hometown favorite, Shalane Flanagan, will make her professional indoor debut at 5000m on the same track in which she set one of her three American records (3000m - 2007 Rebook Boston Indoor Games – 8:33.25). Flanagan is launching her 2009 season after one of the most successful campaigns by any American women in the history of the sport. Her 2008 season included a trip to the medal podium in Beijing with a gutsy bronze medal run in the fastest Olympic 10,000m final ever. Her time of 30:22.22 at the Games bested her own American Record set earlier in 2008 in Palo Alto, CA.
She is scheduled to face Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba, the woman who crossed the line first in Beijing in both the 5000m and 10,000m races.
Galen Rupp finished his 2008 competitive season by leading his team, the University of Oregon, to victory at the NCAA Cross Country Championships in Terre Haute, IN. He also scored his first individual NCAA title at the event. Rupp, from Portland, OR, also finished second at the 2008 US Olympic Trials in the 10,000m and went on to be the highest placing American with his 13th place finish at the Olympic Games.
In 2007, Alan Webb, began his season at the Reebok Boston Indoor Games with a victory when he won the mile in an attention-grabbing time of 3:55.18. That summer, Webb went on to break Steve Scott’s 25-year-old American Record in the event when he clocked 3:46.91. He will face his former college teammate Nick Willis, the reigning Olympic bronze medalist at 1500 from Beijing.
Since the Reebok Boston Indoor Games began in 1996, more than 100 Olympic and World Championship medalists have competed in the event, which has also played host to 6 World Records and 29 National Records. The event has sold out for the last 5 years and is expected to do so in 2009.
The 14th-annual Reebok Boston Indoor Games, the second stop in USA Track & Field’s Visa Championship Series, begins at 5:00 p.m. on Feb. 7 at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center at Roxbury Community College, 1350 Tremont St. Information is now available on-line at www.BostonIndoorGames.com, and tickets are available on-line or by calling 1-877-TIX-TRAC.