Jeff Benjamin checked in with Craig Engels as he did his prep or the 2021 New Balance Indoor Gran Prix Live At Ocean Breeze, Staten Island. Craig just went 1:46.10 a 800m at ATL Meet #2.
The 2021 New Balance Indoor Gran Prix Live At Ocean Breeze, Staten Island
Craig Engels Coming Back To “My Track!
By Jeff Benjamin
One could say that Nike Star Miler Craig Engels is coming back to where that next level all began for him.
At the 2019 USATF Indoor Championships held here at Ocean Breeze, Engels won the first of his national titles, winning the 1-Mile Gold Medal.
That victory propelled him onto the larger scene, as the Mississippi University All-American and SEC Champion went on to also win the 2019 Outdoor National Championship.
Now eager to race again, Engels, who sports a 3:51 mile personal best time, makes no bones about how he feels about coming back to Staten Island.
“I’m looking forward to coming back to MY track,” said the mullet-hair and 1970’s style mustached competitor, known for his great humor and fierce competitiveness as he awaits next week’s New Balance Gran Prix Mile race.
“Staten Island is where I won my first USA title, and I hope to keep my winning streak going at Ocean Breeze… The facility is amazing and the track is one of the fastest in the world.”
Along with the fast track are quite a few fast competitors, and Engels seems more than willing to take them on.
“I think the times at this meet will be much faster than if it were held anywhere else,” said Engels. “I’m very thankful Ocean Breeze was able to get this meet going with such short notice.”I’m super stoked to race a 1500.”
And Engels acknowledged the quality of competition as well.
“The field should be stacked with some of the best 1500 guys in the world, including the reigning Olympic champion (Matthew Centrowitz)!”
Last week indoors in Arkansas, Engels dropped down in distance, working on his speed and clocking a time of 1:46.10 over the 800 meters.
“I’m super stoked to race a 1500.”
Although no live spectators are allowed, the 2021 New Balance Indoor Grand Prix will be shown live on NBC from 4 to 6 p.m. on Feb. 13. The event is the only gold-level U.S. stop on the World Athletics Indoor Tour.
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