Jessica O'Connell runs to Canadian women's indoor record at Millrose Games
Calgary native beats Megan Metcalfe-Wright's mark by over 2 seconds in 3,000 metres
Megan Metcalfe-Wright, who has served as an inspiration to Jessica O'Connell on the track, has lost the national women's indoor 3,000-metre mark to her fellow Albertan.
O'Connell, 30, finished third of 10 finishers on Saturday at the prestigious Millrose Games in New York City, stopping the clock in a Canadian-best eight minutes 46.50 seconds, more than two seconds ahead of Metcalfe-Wright's 8:48.56 clocking at the world indoor championships in Valencia, Spain on March 7, 2008.
A 2007 Pan Am Games champion, Metcalfe-Wright won three consecutive Canadian titles outdoors in the 5,000 from 2005 to 2007 and was 15th in the event at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.
On Saturday, the Calgary-born O'Connell defeated 2018 Commonwealth Games champion Aisha Praught-Leer (8:46.60) of Jamaica and 2017 steeplechase world champion Emma Coburn (8:52.27) of the United States, who placed fourth and fifth, respectively.
Canadian mid-d ladies rewriting the record books this season:<a href="https://twitter.com/gstafford13?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@gstafford13</a> 5000m & mile<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/jennawestaway?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#jennawestaway</a> 1000m<a href="https://twitter.com/jess__oconnell?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@jess__oconnell</a> 3000m<br>WHO IS NEXT?!?! ❤️🇨🇦—@ndsifuentes
American Alicia Monson won Saturday's race in 8:45.97 while teammate Rachel Schneider was second in personal-best 8:46.44.
Seaman returns after 5-year absence
She made her Olympic debut in 2016, placing 26th in the 5,000 at Rio.
O'Connell's Canadian teammate, Rachel Seaman, also shone on Saturday.
Now living in San Diego, the native of Peterborough, Ont., has worked her way back from injuries and depression that nearly led the 33-year-old Seaman to quit the sport last year.
She last competed internationally in 2016 before partially tearing both of her hamstrings that forced Seaman to withdraw from the Olympics.
In 2018, her knee pain subsided following orthotic help to correct an imbalance in the length of Seaman's legs, allowing Seaman to set a goal of competing at this year's world track and field championships in late September at Doha, Qatar. She also has an eye on next year's Summer Games in Tokyo.
Other Canadian results on Saturday:
- Women's 60m hurdles: Astrid Nyame, fourth (8.34 seconds), Phylicia George, fifth (8.37)
- Men's 60 hurdles: Johnathan Cabral, sixth (7.83 seconds)
- Men's 3,000: Ben Flanagan, 10th (7:54.40)
- Women's 400: Maya Stephens, Fifth (54.52)