Sir Walter Miler: The Quest for 4 Minutes

Sandy Roberts then and now - his individual pursuit of a sub-4 minute mile has evolved into an event, and you should go watch it.


On Friday night at Meredith College, former Broughton runner Sandy Roberts renews his pursuit of one of the most hallowed barriers in sports: the 4-minute mile.  Last year at this time, Roberts made a well-attended attempt at Broughton high school, paced by his brother Logan.  Based on the interest, the two brothers (along with former Providence runner Pat Price) decided to make it into an event, and invite some other aspirants who shared the same cause.  That led to an Elite Mens Sub 4 Challenge, but also an Elite Womens Sub 4.5 Challenge (trying to go under 4:30 for the full mile).  To complete the carnival atmosphere, a third race will be run featuring celebrities from the Raleigh area, with the start being staggered by ability level in a process similar to golf handicapping.  Check out the event's website (and pay attention to the information about the pre-race and post-race gatherings, which look interesting...) linked below the previews.  Races start at 9 PM on Friday night, so if you're in the Raleigh area or don't mind a weekend trip there, plan to stop by the new Meredith facility and watch!  Also, take the opportunity to meet new NCRunners reporters David and Rodger, who will be on hand along with Paul to get video and photos.


Elite Men (Sub 4 Challenge)

The race will be paced by Bobby Mack (North Forsyth/NC State), who himself has a PR of 3:59.70, although he is better known for longer races (and we're happy to see he's recovering from injury!).  Only two other competitors have sub-4 on their resume already: Isaac Presson (Asheville/UNC) and Joe Stilin (Rufus King WI/Princeton & Texas).  Ford Palmer (Absegami NJ/Monmouth) has run 3:37 for the 1500 and has broken 4:01 several times, but still needs an actual sub-4.  Donnie Cowart (Rustburg VA/VMI), Andrew Springer (Westerley RI/Georgetown) and Craig Forys (Colts Neck NJ/Michigan) have all run 4:01, and of course the whole thing was put together by Sandy Roberts (Broughton/Georgetown & NC State), whose PR is 4:01.  Full Entries


Elite Women (Sub 4.5 Challenge)

There are several candidates to challenge the 4:30 mark Friday night, plus some 800 speedsters for good measure.  Kristen Findley (Thatcher TN/Vanderbilt) has a PR of 4:37 for the full mile, with Heidi Gregson (Australie/Furman Elite) just behind at 4:38 (plus she has run 4:11 for 1500) and Cydney Ross (Villa Duchesne MO/Duke) coming in with a 4:39 (and an 800 PR of 2:02).  In addition, Amanda LoPiccolo (Unatego NY/Ithaca) has run 4:16 for 1500 and Lyndsay Harper (UVA) posted a 4:18.  Two former North Carolina high schoolers, who both stayed in-state for college, are also going to be on hand: Ericka Charles (DSA/ECU) and Andie Cozzarelli (Apex/NC State).  Full Entries


Sir Walter Miler website

(Schedule, full list of participants)


Sir Walter Miler trailer video

(via YouTube)