Cole Hocker attended the USATf Presser today at the Centennial Hotel in Spokane, Washington. He had 3 questions directed at him by this writer and one by Grant Holloway. We will provide coverage of all three.
One thing is for certain, his attempt to win the double will be easier as his teammate, and training partner, Cooper Teare, pulled out due to COVID. This was first reported by Letsrun.com.
And now, some words on Cole Hocker.
Jeff Benjamin with Cole Hocker, photo courtesy of Jeff Benjamin (Millrose 2022)
Last summer, Cole Hocker won the U.S. Olympic Trials, defeating the 2016 Olympic champion, Matthew Centrowitz, Jr.
In the Olympic final, Cole Hocker made the final, a feat in itself, and finished sixth, running a PB of 3:31.40. Cole has strength, and versatility, look at his 1:46.39 PB at 800m (May 16, 2021) and his 13:18.95 at 5,000m (11 June 2022).
What is one of his other strengths? I believe it is the consistency of his training, the consistency of his training partners and his focus. Consider this. In a recent interview with Matt Wisner, a columnist at RunBlogRun, and a training partner of Cole Hocker and Cooper Teare, Matt reminded me that for the past two years, Cooper and Cole train, and race with each other, almost every day. They push each other, they respect each other and they battle to the final centimeters in races. Coach Ben Thomas knows that the biggest thing that a coach can do sometimes, is to not mess with things that work. Some top athletes can not work together, but not Cooper and Cole.
In Matt’s fine article on Cooper Teare and Cole Hocker, he noted that they have raced eight times and the differential between them has been .50 seconds! Think about that. When was the last time we had American athletes, at this level duking it out that close? Ryun and Liquori?
Cole Hocker has a good sense of humor.
In the presser, I asked (remotely) about how he feels racing indoors. Cole noted, ” I have raced indoors since high school. I am comfortable racing indoors.” When I asked about the 3000m, he noted, ” I will not race longer than 3,000m indoors.”
Remember, Cooper and Cole battled each other in the Millrose Games 3000m, both scoring PBs, with Geordie Beamish catching them at the finish.
Can Cole Hocker win the double this weekend?
I think so, and I also think that Cole Hocker will give us quite a show.
Oh, the final question at the presser came from Grant Holloway”
” I have one for Cole Hocker, does Cole like it when Grant Holloway calls him Sunshine.” noted a laughing Grant Holloway.
Cole Hocker, showing a good sense of humor, noted, ” At least it makes sense when my hair is down.” A good laugh ensued.
Cole Hocker has the speed, endurance and sense of humor to go all the way!