Marlena Preigh was the fastest half-miler this year with a 2:07 PR, which was a six-second improvement from 2017.
I'll admit, when I was compiling the top 100 800 runners from this year, and mashing them against last year, I wasn't expecting to see massive improvements. It's the 800. Two laps. Half-a-mile.
How much time can someone chop off in such a short distance?
21 seconds. Or, 10.5 seconds per lap. Or, about 2.5 second per 100. Yes. Claiming the Leap of the Year in the 800 required a 21-second improvement.
So, who is our workhorse of a winner?
Fairview's Isabel Thornberry.
She went from 2:44 in 2017, to 2:23 this year.
And she wasn't the only one with that huge of a leap. Because ironically enough, a 19-second improvement was a solid runner-up. And that was Durango's Madeleine Burns, who went from 2:38 to 2:19.
In an honorable mention category, we've got Sonja Morin
who tallied a 12 second improvement. Morin went from 2:31 to 2:19. And, I can't go without mentioning Marlena Preigh
. When you've already run 2:14, there's not a whole lot of room to improve, and yet she still dropped nearly seven seconds to go 2:07. And,
I can't mention Preigh without mentioning Bryce Johansen
, who likewise, dropped nearly eight
seconds, going from 2:18 to 2:10.