Scottish Sweep At Fifth Avenue Mile As Kerr, Reekie Win Big In NYC

By Chris Chavez

September 11, 2023

It was a Scottish sweep at the Fifth Avenue Mile for the third consecutive year as 1500m world champion Josh Kerr and Jemma Reekie were victorious on a rainy day in New York City.

Here’s what you need to know:

– Kerr closed out his 2023 campaign with a 3:47.9 win, which is the fourth-fastest time in Fifth Avenue Mile history. The Brooks Beasts star has decided not to contest the Diamond League final. A rematch with Olympic champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen will have to wait until the indoor season or 2024.

– Reekie won her second Fifth Avenue Mile title in three years as she pulled away late in the race to cross the finish line in 4:19.4. Reekie is coming off a fifth place finish in the 800m at the World Athletics Championships final and will be running in next weekend’s Diamond League final.

– On put two men in the top three as George Mills (3:49.9) and George Beamish (3:50) took second and third to round out the podium. Mills was making his Fifth Avenue Mile debut just days after his 3:49.64 mile in Germany. Beamish was coming off a fifth place finish in the steeplechase final at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest and will compete in the steeplechase at the Diamond League final in Eugene, Oregon next weekend.

– Ireland’s Sarah Healey came away with a 4:20.0 runner-up finish. Melissa Courtney-Bryant took third in 4:20.6.

– U.S. mile record holder and 1500m champion Nikki Hiltz was the top American in fourth place in 4:20.7.

– Elle Purrier-St. Pierre made her return to racing for the first time since giving birth to her son, Ivan, about six months ago. She finished seventh in 4:23.3.

What they said afterward:

Josh Kerr: “We’ve ended where we wanted to end, ended on a high. I didn’t do what I wanted to do in Zurich, so it’s nice to end on a high… I was glad to put on a performance like that today but I can’t imagine performances like that are going to continue if I keep pushing.”

George Mills: “This year we aimed for World Champs & we missed it. But like I said, you have two choices when that happens – you either knuckle down & get back to work & see what you can do at the end of the season, or you call it a day and give up. The second one wasn’t even an option.”

Cooper Teare: “I feel like I put together a couple of good weeks of training solo in Eugene for the last month or so. I wish it showed a little better today but it is what it is. The road mile is so variable. I definitely want to come back and give it a shot for the win.”

George Beamish: “I remember saying that if I’m going to do the steeple I don’t want to be average at it. I want to win a medal. Fast forward a few months and I came pretty close to that. Definitely proud of the season I had in the steeple.’

Nikki Hiltz: “I have some big goals for the years to come. It feels like I’ve always had those goals. I want to be an Olympian. Now, it’s just so much closer and possible. I’m in a great place. A+ season”

Elle Purrier-St. Pierre: “I came to this race last year right after I announced my pregnancy and somebody asked me when I thought I’d race again and I was like ‘maybe this race’ So in the back of my head it’s always been ‘maybe I’ll open up at 5th Ave’. It’s always a fun one and it’s full circle from last year.”

What comes next: Most of the athletes who competed at the Fifth Avenue Mile will be shutting their season down. A handful of athletes will be doubling back to compete at next weekend’s Prefontaine Classic, which will serve as the 2023 Diamond League final.

Chris Chavez

Chris Chavez launched CITIUS MAG in 2016 as a passion project while working full-time for Sports Illustrated. He covered the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and grew his humble blog into a multi-pronged media company. He completed all six World Marathon Majors and is an aspiring sub-five-minute miler.