An Insane Year For The 1600

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Carter Dillon and Cole Sprout are two of five Colorado runners who have made the all-time list this year.

I don't think anyone could've truly predicted how insane the 1,600 was going to be this year.

When James Lee ran 4:10.66 at the Chandler Rotary Invite it was just the tip of the ice burg. Weeks later Cruz Culpepper launched himself onto the list, running 4:11.54 at the Texas Relays. The world was already spinning then, but little did anyone know, things were just getting started.

Because then Cole Sprout and Carter Dillon ran 4:12 at Mullen. The jaws of nearly everyone in the state - and the country - dropped to the floor, namely because the times were run here in Colorado, at altitude. But then Michael Mooney went 4:11.99, and took Culpepper to 4:12. 

What? Did that just happen? Did five Colorado boys run sub 4:13 in the same year?

And it's not even over yet. With the Festival of Miles, and Great Southwest days away, Brooks PR just around the corner, and New Balance Nationals Outdoor still on tap, we could still see some movement in this year's 1,600 rankings. 

To understand the gravity of how incredibly competitive the boy's 1,600 was this year, I looked back over the past 16 years to see where this year's crop stood, and you'll see, just as I did, that this year was insane. Now, these aren't just times run in Colorado, these are run all over, so we've got sea-level times included.

I've got a hunch that all those 4:12s and 4:13s and 4:14s we saw in Colorado this year will likely turn into 4:05s, 4:06s and 4:07s within the coming weeks, as Colorado's best hit those downhill tracks on the west slope, you know, the ones run at sea-level...

Spanning the past 16 years, the time to beat is Cerake Geberkidane's 4:06.56. His time stands alone as the only Sub 4:10 run by a Colorado runner in that time span. And that time could very well go down this year. And digging further down the list, you'll notice that 30 boys have run 4:16.46 or faster since 2002.

Five of the top-11 times were run this year, led by James Lee's 4:10.66 run at the Chandler Rotary Invite. Yes, you read that right - Five of the Top 11 times over the past sixteen years were run this year

Culpepper pops up with the second fastest time at 4:11.54, run at the Texas Relays. Mooney's 4:11.99 speaks the loudest, however, as it was run here in Colorado - at altitude. Likewise, Culpepper, Sprout, and Dillon have all run 4:12 in Colorado.