Two of Virginia's all-time best distance stars are headed to Seattle for some PR's and a chance at history in the 2017 installment of the Brooks PR Invitational.
The first of these athletes is Patriot's Rachel McArthur who is running the 800. She currently sits just shy of both the Virginia state and Virginia senior class records. Those times she is chasing were run back in 2004 and 2005 by Sarah Bowman (Brown). Specifically the times are 2:04.94 and 2:05.27 compared to Rachel's season best of 2:05.42.
Though Rachel is very close to those times, it should be noted she has yet to truly be pushed this season and even split a 2:03 at regionals. McArthur, who is the indoor national champion, will have to square off with Sammy Watson who is the greatest prep half-miler all-time. This competition should definitely help push her but don't count Rachel out for the win.
Rachel may not have quite the resume or times that Watson has (who has gone 2:00) but she does have one heck of a kick. If this race comes down to the final 200m it could be very close.
VA's only other athlete is another huge star, Waleed Suliman from Douglas Freeman. The multiple time 5A State Champion and Ole Miss commit is not only looking for the win in the Mile but really looking for a big PR.
It is no secret that Waleed is attempting to break the four minute barrier and this will be the race to do it. In fact, it is arguably the most stacked high school field ever and Team VA has a history of big upsets. The biggest of those being Drew Hunter taking down Grant Fisher just a few short years ago. We could see another upset this year.
Waleed enters the meet having already ran 4:04 this season (full Mile) and a blistering 1:51 for the 800. Either he is going to have to run 3:58 to win or get ready for a super fast last 400. Indoors he was unable to make the best move but on an outdoor track he has a lot more room to make that famous move with 300m to go.