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Sunday , November 18 2018
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Tag Archives: miner track

UTEP’s Korir Declares to Run Professionally for Nike

The now former UTEP track and field star Emmanuel Korir has decided to forgo his remaining collegiate eligibility and start competing professionally after signing a pro contract with Nike.

“Emmanuel started running well at the start of the indoor season, that’s when talks of turning pro came up”, said associate head coach Paul Ereng. “He’s ranked number one in the world in the 800m and top 10 in the 400m so he has the tools to become another house hold name for Kenya.”

Korir made his debut for the Miners at the Vanderbilt Commodore Invitational. The native of Kenya competed indoor for the first time in his career and claimed gold in the 800m with an impressive 1:46.50 time. The mid-distance runner went undefeated in each race he took part in including setting a world record 600m time of 1:14.97 at the New Mexico Cherry and Silver.

Wrapping up the indoor season, Korir became the first Miner to win the NCAA National Indoor title in the 800m clocking a time of 1:47.48.

“The decision for him to turn pro not only benefits him but also the program”, stated Ereng. “We want the best for our athletes and if we can help them achieve the goals they want and help further their education we will do everything we can to help them.”

During the outdoor season, Korir broke the school record in the 400m at the UTEP Invitational setting a time of 44.67 previously held by Bert Cameron (1981). The All-American is just one of three athletes in the world to run a sub-45 second 400m (UTEP Invitational) and a sub-1:44 in the 800m (1:43.75; Brutus Hamilton Challenge). He captured his second national title in the 800m (1:45.03) at the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore., the Mecca of track and field.

Making his professional debut back on July 21, Korir demolished a quality field with a world-leading 1:43.10 at the Herculis Monaco Diamond League in France. He captured the gold at the Kenyan trials running 1:43.86 in Nairobi to solidify his spot on the Kenya national team and a spot in the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federation) World Championships. Korir made the trip to London, England, where he reached the semifinal round of the 800m before narrowly missing out of the final.

Korir will return to the Sun City to continue his studies and train with Ereng.

Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and uteptrack on Instagram for breaking news and live updates.

Five Miners Prepare for World Championships

The UTEP track and field program will be well represented with five Miners punching their ticket to the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) World Championships held in London, England, starting Friday, August 1-13.

Emmanuel Korir and Tobi Amusan will be making their first appearance at the world stage. Korir will compete in the 800m on Saturday, Aug. 5 at 5:45 a.m. M.T. The Miner clocked the third fastest time in the world this year at the Brutus Hamilton Invitational (1:43.73). The All-American won back-to-back NCAA titles in both the indoor and outdoor 800m and claimed gold at the Kenyan Trails with a time of 1:43.86.

Competing on the biggest stage is nothing new for Amusan, having competed at the 2016 Rio Olympics where she placed 11th overall in the 100m hurdles (12.91).  The Nigerian native clocked the seventh-fastest time (12.57) in the world this year when she captured her first NCAA title in the 100m hurdles.

The UTEP All-American will be joined by former Miner Greta Kerekes (Hungary), as she clocked a qualifying time of 13.10. Both athletes will take the track on Friday, Aug. 11 at 3:45 a.m.

Making her fourth appearance at the IAAF flagship event, Blessing Okagbare (Nigeria) will compete in the 100m, long jump and the 4x100m relay team. The six-time Nigeria champion won gold in the 100m, silver in the long jump and bronze in the 200m four years ago in Moscow, Russia. Okagbare is a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist in the long jump and a two-time NCAA champion in the 100m and long jump (2010).

Okagbare is one of UTEP’s most decorated athletes holding six school records. The sprinter will be the first to take the track on Saturday, Aug. 5 at 4:45 a.m.

Competing in the men’s 200m will be former Miner Churandy Martina representing the Netherlands. Martina qualified for the 200m with a time of 20.27 and has a personal-best 19.81. The Dutchman is a four-time gold medalist at the Central American and Caribbean Games (2006, 2010) and a three-time gold medalist at the European Championships (2012, 2016). Churandy hold the school record in the 100m with a time of 9.95.

The World Championships streamed across the NBC family of networks with coverage for each day. Be sure to follow @UTEPTrack on Twitter and uteptrack on Instagram for live updates.