We got in touch with Cory Leslie after his blazing 3:58.98 in RI on Tuesday night. With that time, the Ohio State All-American became the first person to go under four minutes outdoors on RI soil.
1.) So how did you find out about this race?
My agent told me about the race (which he found out about through the director Charlie Breagy).
2.) Was there a big crowd gathered to help push you guys?
The crowd was incredible, there were kids lining the track for almost 200 meters. Without all the cheering and support they showed I don’t thnk we would of been able to run as fast as we did.
3.) Were you focused on sub-four, or did you feel good enough to run a new PR?
The main focus was breaking four. That’s what the crowd wanted to see and that’s what we wanted to do.
4.) How many times have you gone under four mins for the mile now?
This was my 3rd time running under the four minute barrier but my first time outdoors.
5.) Any plans to run under a four min mile in every state now? If so, how many states have you already crossed off the list?
Haven’t thought about running the sub four mile in all states but I’ve currently only done it in two (twice at Penn State and now here).
6.) Track races aren’t as readily available as road races, do you think we need more events like this to boost the profile of the sport? Or at least just to get more active participation?
This event was great. I think anytime you can host an event in an intimate setting like this and allow the fans to interact directly with the athletes it’s great for both the sport and the community.
7.) The steeplechase appears to be your specialty, but is that your favorite track race? Or do you secretly prefer to be a miler?
The steeple is definitely my favorite race to run. I love the mile and all the tactics and uncertainty that comes with it. The mile is always fun to run though because people who don’t know track still know what breaking the 4 minute mile means in our sport. [Level Note: Bring back the mile!!!]
8.) The Americans are doing quite well on the track in the Olympics, and I think it’s getting a lot of us all amped up to go out for a run. How good did it feel to go rip out a fast time (and get a win) while riding this wave of Olympic excitement?
The US is performing at such a high level in London it’s incredible to be able to watch. The talent and times being run by Americans right now are unbelievable and we’re finally showing what we can do on a world stage. Being able to come out and run well right now with all this excitement around track and field because of the games was an added bonus.
Below is some video of the race. Note the frog that frolics around in lane one right before the start. That’s a sign of good luck. If you see that happen next time you’re about to race on the track, then you just might break the four minute mile too. Thanks to whoever put this video up on Youtube (justinfkuo?)!