The boys classic mile at the Flo Golden South Classic came down to an epic kick.
Ben Hartvigsen, the 3200m FHSAA 4A state runner-up, led the race from the start taking the race out in a brisk 63 second first quarter.
Hartvigsen pushed the pace through the half, gaining about a ten meter lead on the field and going through in a consistent 2:08 half mile with Brown right behind.
As Hartvigsen, Brown, Wester, and Benitez-Chaparro came around into the final lap, Benitez-Chaparro makes a move and takes the third place with authority. Third was not good enough for the Vanguard junior.
The field approached the 200m point and it was a battle between Brown and Benitez-Chaparro who had both now passed Hartvigsen and knew the race would go down to a kick.
Two very strong middle distance athletes came down the home stretch and the question became -- who would have another gear?
Vanguard 4x800m FHSAA 3A State Champions
Benitez-Chaparro answered that question by dropping the hammer to kick it in the final 50m.
The junior won the race in a brisk time of 4:17.67. To put this time in perspective, Benitez-Chaparro finished third in the 1600m at the FHSAA 3A State Finals in a time of 4:20.04, a personal record. The last time Benitez-Chaparro raced the mile run was back in January where he finished in a time of 4:39.86 -- an excellent progression for the Vanguard Knight.
Similarly, Brown also finished his state meet 1600m in a time of 4:20.92 -- also a personal record for the Maclay junior. Brown had a very strong second place finish in a time of 4:18.80 to add another outstanding race to his decorated season.
Hartvigsen closed in a strong 66 second last lap to finish third in a time of 4:21.57, a new personal record for the Sarasota senior and Harvard signee.