Yared Nuguse is on a mission to write his name in the books of athletic history at the Millrose Games, aiming to shatter the world record in the men's Wanamaker Mile. With a remarkable return to New York, Nuguse is not just looking to defend his title but to surpass the existing world indoor record of 3:47.01, set by Yomif Kejelcha. Coming off a stellar year, where he clocked the second fastest time ever and set a new US record with a time of 3:47.38, Nuguse's aspirations are sky-high. His impressive track record, which includes finishing fifth in the 1500 metres at the World Championships in Budapest with a time of 3:30.25 and clinching victory at the Diamond League meeting in Zurich with a time of 3:30.49 in 2023, sets the stage for a monumental showdown at the prestigious event.
Nuguse will be joined by George Mills, who improved his PBs in the 1500 metres to 3:30.95 in Zurich and 3:47.65 at the Diamond League in Eugene in 2023. The other top US athlete in the field is Hobbs Kessler, who finished first at the World Road Running Championships over the mile distance in Riga 2023 and won the 1500 metres in Boston last week in 3:33.66. Twenty-year-old Kessler won the 1500m at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston with his indoor PB of 3:33.66 and improved his outdoor PB to 3:32.61 in Los Angeles in May 2023.
The other athletes to watch are Spain’s Mario Garcia Romo, bronze medallist in the 1500 metres at the 2022 European Championships in Munich, Ireland’s Andrew Coscoran, national record holder with 3:30.42 at the Diamond League meeting in Chorzow in 2023, and Cooper Teare, US outdoor champion in Eugene 2022.
Women’s 60 metres hurdles:
Reigning world 100 metres hurdles champion Danielle Williams is set to clash against last year’s Millrose Games winner Devynne Charlton, former world outdoor and indoor champion Nia Ali, current world seasonal leader Tia Jones and Cindy Sember from Great Britain.
Williams won the 100 metres hurdles gold medal in Budapest in 12.43 regaining the title she first won in Beijing 2015. The Jamaican hurdler went on to win two European races in Zurich and Berlin. She has competed twice in her career in New York, winning both times. She held the world indoor leading time with 7.75 in 2022.
Ali won two world indoor titles in Sopot 2014 ad Portland 2016, the world outdoor gold medal in Doha 2019 and the Olympic silver medal in Rio de Janeiro 2016. The US hurdler won the national outdoor title in Eugene and the Diamond League meeting in Monaco improving her PB to 12.30.
Charlton clocked 7.75 twice this season in Lubbock and in the World Indoor Tour Gold meeting in Boston, where she finished third. The Bahamian hurdler, who finished fourth at the Olympic Games in Tokyo, won last year’s edition of the Millrose Games in 7.91.
Tia Jones, fifth at the US outdoor champion in the 100 metres hurdles in 12.50, recently won at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston with 7.72 setting the fifth fastest time in history last week.
Cindy Sember finished fourth at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016 in the 100 metres hurdles in 12.63 and won the European Indoor silver medal in the 60 metres hurdles in Torun 2021 in 7.89.
Men’s 60 metres hurdles:
Trey Cunningham will clash against Daniel Roberts in the men’s 60 metres hurdles. Cunningham won the NCAA 60 metres hurdles indoor and 110 metres outdoor titles improving his PBs with 7.38 and 13.00 in 2021 and the world silver medal in the 110 metres hurdles in 13.08 in Eugene. He finished second to Grant Holloway in 7.49 after setting his seasonal best of 7.44 in the heats at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston last Sunday.
Roberts won the world bronze medal in Budapest 2023 in 13.09 in the 110 metres hurdles and three US outdoor titles in 2019, 2022 and 2023.
Women’s 60 metres:
Julien Alfred from Santa Lucia leads a star-studded line-up in the women’s 60 metres, that features four Olympic medallists.
Alfred won the NCAA indoor title in 2023 in a North American record of 6.94 missing the world record by 0.02. The Santa Lucian sprinter scored the double by winning the 200 metres NCAA indoor title in 22.01, the second fastest time on the world all-time indoor list. She remained unbeaten in the 100 metres outdoors from April to August. She suffered the only defeat at the World Championships in Budapest, where she finished fifth in the 100m in 10.93. She also placed fourth in the 200m in the Hungarian capital in 22.05. This year Alfred set seasonal best times of 7.04 in the 60m and 22.16 in the 200m in Albuquerque on 3 February.
Alfred will face Olympic relay gold medallists Briana Williams, English Gardner and Jamaica’s Shashalee Forbes.
Williams won two gold medals in the 100 and 200 metres at the World under 20 Championships in Tampere 2018, the gold medal in the 4x100 relay at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021 in 41.02 and finished fifth in the 60 metres in 7.04 at the 2022 World indoor Championships in Belgrade.
Forbes ran two 60m races on European soil winning in Dusseldorf in 7.11 and finishing third in Ostrava in 7.13. The Jamaican sprinter also won an outdoor 60 metres race in Kingston in her PB of 7.03.
Gardner won the 100 metres at the US Olympic Trials in 2016 in 10.76 and the Olympic gold medal in the 4x100 relay in Rio de Janeiro in the same year.
Men’s 60 metres:
Reigning Olympic 200 metres champion André De Grasse will go up against Christian Coleman, world indoor champion in Birmingham 2018 and world indoor record holder with 6.34, Ackeem Blake from Jamaica, NACAC champion in 2022, Ronnie Baker, world indoor bronze medallist in 2018 and fifth in the Olympic final in Tokyo 2021, Abdul Hakim Sani Brown, sixth in the World Championships final in the 100 metres in Budapest in 10.04 after equalling his PB with 9.97 in the semifinal, and Puerto Rican record holder Miles Lewis.
Coleman will be seeking a third win at the Millrose Games after finishing first in 2022 in 6.49 and 2023 in 6.47. The US sprinter won the Wanda Diamond League title in the 100 metres in Eugene 2023 equalling the world seasonal best with 9.83.
Blake finished second to Noah Lyles at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston last week improving his PB to 6.45. The Jamaican sprinter set his 100m PB with 9.89 in Los Angeles last May.
De Grasse, who won six Olympic medals and four world medals, returned to his best shape last September when he won the Wanda Diamond League final in Eugene in a seasonal best of 19.76. He clocked 6.65 in Astana on his seasonal debut.
Women’s high jump:
Reigning world indoor and outdoor champion Yaroslava Mahuchik will compete at the Millrose Games for the first time in his career. Mahuchik showed her impressive form by setting a world seasonal lead of 2.04m in Cottbus last January.
Mahuchik set her indoor PB with 2.06m in Banska Bystrika in 2021, equalling the third best performance in the world indoor all-time list. The Olympic bronze medallist won the first world outdoor gold medal in Budapest with 2.01m and the 2023 Wanda Diamond League Final in Eugene setting the world seasonal best with 2.03m. The 21-year-old Ukrainian jumper won the 2022 world indoor title in Belgrade with 2.02m and set the 2023 world seasonal best with 2.02m in Metz.
The Ukrainian athlete will be challenged by US jumper Vashti Cunningham, world indoor champion in Portland 2016 with 1.96m and world outdoor bronze medallist with 2.00m in Doha 2019, when Mahuchik won the silver medal setting a world under 20 record with 2.04m. Cunningham, daughter of former American Football legend Randall Cunningham, won at the Millrose Games in 2018 and 2019 the last two times the women’s high jump was held at this meeting.
The line-up also features Charity Griffith, 2023 NCAA champion, Safina Sadullayeva from Uzbekistan, Olympic finalist and Asian Games champion, Kim Williamson, seven-time Jamaican champion, Nawal Meniker from France, a finalist at last August’s World Championships in Budapest.
The women’s high jump will return in the programme of the Millrose Games for the first time since 2019.
Men’s pole vault:
Global medallist Chris Nilsen will take on North American record holder KC Lightfoot. Nilsen won the Olympic silver medal in Tokyo with 5.97m and two world medals (silver in Eugene 2022 with 5.94m and bronze in Budapest 2023 with 5.95m). Nilsen made his seasonal debut with a win at the Pole Vault Summit in Reno with 5.90m.
Lightfoot finished fourth at the Olympic Games in Tokyo with 5.80 and won the NCAA indoor title in 2023 with 5.93m in Fayetteville in 2021. The US vaulter broke the North American record with 6.07m last year in Nashville. He competed three times this winter clearing 5.72m in Reno, 5.80m in Fayetteville and a seasonal best of 5.92m in Uppsala.
The line-up also features Zach McWorther (second at the US Championships in Eugene with 5.86m and eighth at the World Championships in Budapest with 5.75m), Matt Ludwig (US indoor champion with 5.85m in 2020 and Panamerican gold medallist in 2023) and Zachery Bradford (world under 20 silver medallist in Tampere 2018 and second at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque 2023 with 5.91m).
World indoor silver medallist Elle St. Pierre will chase her third win in the women’s Wanamaker Mile.
St. Pierre set a meeting and North American record of 4:16.85 at the 2020 Wanamaker Mile and won the world indoor silver medal in the 3000 metres in Belgrade 2022.
St. Pierre will renew her rivalry against Jessica Hull, who won the 3000 metres ahead of her US rival in a close 3000 metres race in Boston last week in an Oceanian record of 8:24.93. Hull set the Australian record in the mile with 4:15.34 in the Monaco Diamond League meeting last year.
The line-up also features two-time world indoor silver medallist Axumawit Embaye from Ethiopia, 2022 US 1500m champion Sinclaire Johnson, British 1500m champion Katie Snowden, Josette Andrews, twice a Millrose Games runner-up, Olympic finalist Marta Perez from Spain, and two-time NCAA champion Sage Hurta Klecker from the USA.
Women’s 2 mile:
Alicia Monson will make her return to the Armory Track in New York where she won the 3000 metres in 8:25.05 last year. Monson performed well in the 2022 Diamond League season finishing second in the 3000 metres in Lausanne in 8:26.81. She placed fifth in the 10000m at the 2023 World Championships in Budapest. The 2 mile US record of 9:10.28 could be under threat.
Monson will face Laura Muir, who made her debut at the Millrose Games winning the Wanamaker Mile last year in 4:20.15. Muir won the Olympic silver medal in the 1500 metres improving her British record to 3:54.50 in Tokyo 2021 and the world bronze medal in 3:55.28 in Eugene 2022. The Scottish athlete set the British outdoor record over the mile distance clocking 4:15.24 at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco.
The other athlete to watch is Nikki Hiltz, who won the US outdoor title in the 1500 metres in Eugene last year and started the 2024 indoor season by clocking 2:34.09 in the 1000 metres in Seattle on 26 January.
The line-up is completed by USA’s Emily Infeld, third at the World Championships in Beijing 2015, Japan’s Nozomi Tanaka, Olympic finalist in the 1500 metres in Tokyo 2021 and national record holder in the 1500m with 3:59.19 and in the 5000m with 14:29.18, Courtney Wayment, NCAA champion in the 3000 metres steeplechase in Eugene in 2022, Ethiopia’s Medina Eisa, world under 20 record holder in the 5000 metres with 14:16.54 in London last July, and Melknat Wudu, world under 20 record holder in the indoor 3000 metres with 8:32.34 in Boston last week.
Men’s 2 Mile:
Reigning world 1500 metres champion and Olympic bronze medallist Josh Kerr will lead the line-up in the 2 miles race.
Kerr is ranked fourth on the world all-time list over the mile distance with his PB of 3:48.87 set in Boston in 2022. The British middle distance runner won the 3000 metres in 7:33.47 in last year’s edition of the Millrose Games and went on to win the world gold medal in Budapest ahead of Jakob Ingebrigtsen. He will chase the 2 miles world record set by his compatriot Mo Farah with 8:03.40 in Birmingham in 2015. Kerr will decide about competing at the World Indoor Championships in Glasgow after the New York race.
Kerr finished second over the mile distance in 2018 and 2022 and fourth in 2019 in his previous appearances at the Millrose Games. He set a PB of 3:29.05 in the 1500 metres when he won the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021.
Josh Kerr: “There is going to be a fantastic field and it will be paced at the two-mile world record. Currently, I am in fantastic shape. I am having an amazing winter preparation and dealing with everything that’s exciting, and also terrible about being a world champion. I am very excited for it”.
Grant Fisher will run his first race after leaving the Bowerman Track Club. Fisher set US records in the 3000m with 7:25.47 at the Diamond League final in Eugene 2023, in the 5000m with 12:46.96 in Brussels in 2022 and the 10000m in San Juan Capistrano with 26:33.84 in 2022. The US athlete finished fifth in the 10000m at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021 and fourth in the 5000m at the World Championships in Eugene 2022.
US rising star Cole Hocker will also chase a fast time. Hocker finished sixth at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021 in 3:31.40 and seventh at the World Championships in Eugene 2023 in 3:30.70.
Women’s 300 metres:
Rhasidat Adeleke will go head-to-head against Talitha Diggs in a clash between the past two women’s 400 metres NCAA champions.
Adeleke clocked 7.15 in the 60 metres and 22.49 in the 200 metres to improve her own Irish indoor records in Albuquerque on 20th January.
Adeleke made her major breakthrough in 2021 when she won two European under 20 titles in the 100 and 200 metres in Tallin. The Irish athlete of Nigerian origin finished fifth in the 400m in 50.53 at the European Championships in Munich 2022 and fourth over this distance at the World Championships in Eugene 2022 in 50.13. She won the NCAA title in the one-lap event in 49.20 in Austin in 2023. She run the 300 metres once in 2022 in a national record of 36.87.
Diggs beat Adeleke in that 300m race in Clemson in 36.68. The US athlete won the NCAA title in 2022 in the 400 metres in 49.99, the US title in 50.22 and the 4x400 relay gold medal at the World Championships in Eugene in 2022.
The line-up will also feature Jamaican 400 metres specialists Leah Anderson and Candice McLeod.
Anderson finished third in last year’s edition of the Millrose Games in the 300 metres in 36.68. Olympic and world 4x400 medallist McLeod will run the 300 metres for the first time in her career.
Men’s 800 metres:
US middle-distance runner Bryce Hoppel will renew his rivalry against Kenya’s Noah Kibet. Hoppel and Kibet finished second and third at the 2022 World Indoor Championships in Belgrade. Hoppel won the NCAA outdoor title in Austin 2019 in 1:44.41 and finished fourth at the World Championships in Doha in 1:44.25 later that year.
Kibet won the world under 20 bronze medal in Nairobi 2021 in 1:44.88. He set his indoor PB of 1:44.98 at the 2023 edition of the Millrose Games.
800 metri femminili:
Olympic 800 metres bronze medallist Raevyn Rogers will return to her favourite distance after testing her shape in a 400 metres race in Boston. Rogers will take on Jamaica’s Natoya Goule Toppin, who finished eighth in the Olympic final in Tokyo 2021 in 1:56.26 and set the national record with 1:55.96 at the Diamond League final in Eugene 2023.