Athletics News – News – Benne Anderson Leads Sub-Nine Parade In Michigan With 8:41.50 - News - Benne Anderson Leads Sub-Nine Parade In Michigan With 8:41.50

Rachel Forsyth Takes Another Big Step In Her Comeback With 3,200 Win

By Steve Underwood for DyeStat

SHEPHERD, Michigan – One eight-lapper featured a jaw-dropping breakthrough in the greatest boys race ever at the distance in Michigan history, while the other was an important landmark in the comeback of the state’s top female distance runner.

As such, the performances Friday night by Benne Anderson and Rachel Forsyth in the Shepherd Blue Jay Invite Elite 3,200s won’t soon be forgotten.

Anderson (Grand Rapids West Ottawa senior) powered away from Hunter Jones with a surge on the fourth lap and powered to a dazzling US#4 8:41.50 in the boys race, a mark trailing only the first three finishers from the Arcadia Invite on the outdoor national list this year. 


It’s also No. 4 on the Michigan all-time list behind Hobbs Kessler, Grant Fisher and Dathan Ritzenhein – three of the greatest prep distance runners in American history. Anderson led four others under 9:00, including Seth Norder (Grand Haven junior) at 8:46.33 and Jones (Benzie Central senior) at 8:52.28.

Forsyth also pulled away mid-race in the girls 3,200, gapping Jessica Jazwinski and running home to a 10:17.48 triumph, fastest in Michigan this year.  While 15 seconds off the Ann Arbor Pioneer junior’s PR, the time was encouraging in her first attempt at the distance in a major race since February 2022, when she clocked 10:02.12.  

But following that sophomore year indoor season, Forsyth battled health issues that kept her out of training for several months, as she candidly detailed to Jeff Hollobaugh of and Track & Field News in this recent interview:

“I was telling my teammates beforehand that I haven’t really run one (a serious 3,200) in a really long time,” she said, “so I didn’t really know what to expect. My goal was to take it out as best I could and see how well I could keep it.”

Since this past indoor season where she was gradually making progress in training and at all distances, Forsyth had reached 2:10.29 for 800m and 4:51.35 for 1600m in April before tackling the longer race Friday.  She and Jazwinski went out hard, hitting 400 around 71 seconds, before settling in and passing 1600 at 5:03. 

“I think I get a little excited in my races,” Forsyth said with a laugh about the quick start, “so I was kind of used to feeling a little tired.”

She covered the final four…

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