Robby Andrews has added another first to his considerable running accomplishments.
The nationally ranked middle distance runner from Manalapan will be representing the United States at the IAAF World Indoor Track and Field Championships in Portland, Oregon, this week. It will be the first appearance at the indoor worlds for the Manalapan High School graduate. Last summer, he competed at the outdoor world championships in Beijing, China, finishing 11th in the final.
Andrews made the U.S. national team by finishing second in the 1,500-meter run at the U.S. Indoor Track and Field Championships March 13 in Portland.
The stretch-run dual by Andrews and winner Matt Centrowitz was one of the highlights of the national championships, which served as the qualifier for the world championships. Centrowitz, the top-ranked American who is undefeated this indoor season, found just enough finishing speed at the tape to edge the hard-charging Andrews for the championship by .07, 3:44.33-3:44.40.
The IAAF World Indoor Championships are March 17-20. The heats for the men’s 1,500 are March 18 with the final on March 20.
Centrowitz and Andrews would like nothing more this week than to have the gold medal come down to another dual between the country’s two-best 1,500/mile runners.
Andrews has thrived indoors throughout his career. He set two still-standing national records in high school running for Manalapan in the 800 (1:49.21) and 1,000 (2:22.28) meters. He won the NCAA title at 800 meters at the University of Virginia under cover and last year won his first USATF championship over 1,000 meters.
This year is all about the Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, for Andrews, and the indoor season has been nothing short of encouraging for his prospects. In addition to his second-place showing at the U.S. nationals and a trip to the world championships, he lowered his personal best in the mile to 3:53.16.
The Olympic Trials are in Eugene, Oregon, July 1-10. A top-three finish there in the 1,500 would put Andrews in his first Olympic Games.