A Couple of Coaches in the Spotlight at Falmouth

by EJN Comments (0) Articles, Racing

The elite miles at the Falmouth Road Race are an excellent excuse to get into town a little early and check out some exciting race action. It’s even an opportune time to rub elbows with some of the sport’s elite. It’s where we scored our Chris Solinsky interview a couple of years ago. We’ll have some people down there again this year, with Jim Dandeneau and Joe Navas both cranking out the quality. As we count down to the men’s mile race, Jim Dandeneau breaks down the field for tomorrow tonight’s race:

  • Ben True.  After running 27:49 at Beach to Beacon 10K two weeks ago,  he turns his attention back to the track in Falmouth in advance of chasing the 13:00 minute barrier for 5000 meters over in Europe (Zurich 08/28/2014 + Brussels09/05/2014). This competitive mile in Falmouth will be a great test and tune up in his quest to become just the 6thAmerican to do conquer the feat.
  • Sam Chelanga. The 2 time former NCAA Cross-Country champion and collegiate record holder in the 10K (and training partner of Ben True) steps down in distance to compete in his first ever mile race on the track. It will be very interesting to see how he hangs in there with some of the best milers in the United States.
  • Will Leer. The outspoken bearded one is having the best outdoor season of his career having recently won the Morton Games mile in 3:51.72. This former Division III star will certainly be a force to be reckoned with and is probably the favorite for this event.
  • Donn Cabral.  This Connecticut native, a Princeton alum and steeplechase specialist, appears to have gotten back close to his 2012 Olympic form.  As a new member of the NJ NY Track Club and presently training under the direction of Frank Gagliano (“Gags”) he will be chasing his 3:56.41 PR.
  • Kyle Merber. The 23 year old Columbia alum appears in great shape following his 3:55:08 finish last weekend at the Running Institute Ron Warhurst mile in Michigan, just off his 3:54.76 lifetime best.  Merber, who recently signed a with Hoka One One and is also training under the tutelage of Gags. The American collegiate record holder in the 1500(3:35.59) seems prime for a top finish.
  • Garrett Heath. For some reason this Stanford alum always seems to fly under the radar despite a 3:34.12 1500 best. In January, at a cross country race in Scotland, he pulled off a shocking upset, defeating Olympic gold medalists Kenenisa Bekele and Asbel Kiprop.   Last weekend, Heath finished ahead of Merber,  running 3:53.61 narrowly missing defeating Olympic silver medalist Nick Willis.
  • Jordan McNamara.  One of the most consistent performers in the 1500/mile event over the last few years and owner of the Falmouth meet record as the 2011 winner (3:54.89) he is returning from an injury suffered earlier in the year however, as always, expect him to be in the mix over the last 300 meters.
  • David Torrence. The 28 year old California native with a 3:52.01 lifetime mile best has amazing range, having run 1:45.14 for 800 meters and 13:16 for 5000 meters. The American indoor record holder at 1000 meters, (2:16.76) don’t be shocked to see him breaking the tape.


Not only does Sam Chelanga train with Ben True but the two coach each other. It’ll be interesting to see who beats their coach tonight. The loser can always say ‘yeah, I coached him to that win‘. Can’t wait for this battle!

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