Runners compete in Worlds Fastest 5K races in downtown Carlsbad
A race renowned for fast runners and world records once again welcomes a stellar field for the elite invitational at the 33rd annual Carlsbad 5000 on Sunday, March 25, 2018. Leading the way will be a world class field of elite athletes ready to run a fast time along the scenic oceanfront streets in downtown Carlsbad.
The spring running season is in full swing as a contingent of international runners will travel to the event, known as the ‘World’s Fastest 5K’ road race as the home of 16 world records, 8 U.S. records and 11 world wheelchair bests. Race day begins at 6:58 am with the Masters Men (40 years old and over), the first of six races to take place throughout the day. The women’s elite race will begin at 10:15 am and the men’s elite race is scheduled for 10:40 am.
Saturday’s Junior Carlsbad will kick off a weekend of family fun, hosting a morning of kids’ races as a precursor to the main event Sunday morning. Both events will feature post-race refreshments, prizes, live entertainment and a free outdoor Health & Fitness Expo that will run throughout the two days of exercise and excitement.
“The Carlsbad 5000 is the premiere 5k road race in the world and we are guaranteed new champions this year as both 2017 winners are unavailable to compete,” said Matthew Turnbull, elite athlete coordinator for the event. “To stand on top of the podium at the Carlsbad 5000 is a great honor and on Sunday morning two new athletes will be joining some of the greatest athletes of all time who have their names engraved on the Mike Long Trophy.”
Sweden’s Kalle Berglund, the national record holder for 1500m who recently represented his country at the IAAF World Indoor Championships last month, and Denmark’s Nick Jensen, a 7-time National Champion over 800m and 1500m, headline the men’s field for the elite invitational which will take place at 10:45am.
The Europeans will be joined by a pair of Berlund’s countrymen, Johan Rogestedt, a former Youth World Champion over 800m who is making his 5k debut, and Emil Blomberg, who has an 8:32.27 personal best for the Steeplechase and ran a 1500m best indoors earlier this year.
Pushing the Swedish contingent will be Ethiopia’s Gebrekidan Abadi and Americans Louis Seferini, who recently became the 514th U.S. athlete to break 4 minutes in the mile, running 3:59.33 at the Boston University Last Chance meet, Dan Nestor, who ran a 3.55 road mile in Boulder and 29.50 over 10km cross country at the end of last year and Samuel Atkin, a two-time NAIA Champion who has a personal best of 13.56 from the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot last year.
The women’s field for Carlsbad is equally as competitive. Emelia Gorecka of Great Britain, will look to continue the recent success for U.K. runners including 2014 Champion Julia Bleasdale. Gorecka was a 2013 European Junior Champion over 3000m and has a 5000m best of 15:07. Her top challengers include Jessica O’Connell, who represented Canada at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and finished was 4th in Carlsbad in 2015. They will be joined by Mexico’s Brenda Flores Munoz, a gold and silver medal from the 2015 Pan Am Gameswho owns a 15.30.87 personal best for 5000m.
Top Americans will be joining the field on the women’s side led by Sarah Brown, a nine-time track and cross country All-American at the University of Tennessee and Alycia Cridebring, who has a personal best of 15.35.34 for 5000m. Other notables in the elite invitational include a trio of local triathetes: Ellie Abrahamson, a NCAA D1 All-American at Wake Forest University; Carlsbad’s Mary Alex England, who has a 5K best of 16.10; and Sophie Chase who ran 16.19.77 for 5000m at the Stanford Cardinal Classic last year. Chelsey Totten and Natasha La Beaud round out the American entrants.
While hosting the “World’s Fastest 5K” for elite athletes, the Carlsbad 5000 welcomes runners and walkers of all ages and abilities to a series of four competitive age group races. The event is renowned for its scenic course, healthy competition and a weekend of fun for participants of all ages and skill levels. Kicking off the weekend of family fun is the Junior Carlsbad, which takes place Saturday, March 24 and offers 9 different races specifically designed for kids age 12 and under.
Race weekend registration is available for all events. A free outdoor Health & Fitness Expo takes place on race weekend, running from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday. The expo will serve as race registration headquarters on Saturday, allowing participants to pick up their race number, timing chip, t-shirt and goodie bag. The interactive expo, located on Roosevelt Street between Grand and Carlsbad Village Drive, will feature vendors showcasing running apparel and shoes, fitness gear and health and nutrition items.