Australian Ollie Hoare was pushed to a bright new athletics landmark in Oslo’s Dream Mile, setting a new Oceania record while pushing Olympic champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen.
Hoare, 25, a relentless world-class rider, was the only rider to live with Norwegian idol Ingebrigtsen before the Olympic champion stormed away down the straight to claim victory on Thursday in one of the big races on the international calendar.
But while Ingebrigtsen narrowly missed breaking 37-year-old Steve Cram’s European mile record at the Diamond League meeting with his run of 3min 46.46s, the second Hoare was able to celebrate Stewart McSweyn’s Oceanian record with his run of 3:47.48.
He may have finished about 10 meters adrift, but it was a remarkable effort from the Sydneysider Hoare, who never let the dazzling 21-year-old Norwegian out of his sight in the paced run.
Even halfway there were only three left – the top two and Britain’s Jake Wightman – and, at the bell, it had become a two-horse race with Hoare doing his best to live with Ingebrigtsen on the final circuit that the Norwegian covered. in 57 seconds.
On a wet evening at the famous old Bislett Stadium, the brightest brother of world athletics’ first family was aiming for the venerable target of Briton Cram.
The quality of Cram’s run that night in 1985, however, became evident as Ingebrigtsen strode away but still could not match the mark of 3:46.32 set at the same stage.
But McSweyn’s 3:48.37 – also set at Bislett last July – was erased by a whopping 0.89s margin as Hoare ran a time that puts him 13th on the all-time milers list, a place behind the great Seb Coe.
Time erased Hoare’s previous personal best of 3:50.65 set at the Bowerman Mile in Eugene last month when he again had to give Ingebrigtsen the best.
The pair also look set to face off in the same venue in the United States at the world championships in a month, where Hoare looks set to challenge for a medal.