Family Affair: Father & Son Hold Record as Fastest Mile Duo
Gregoreks pass Keinos, now #1 combo: “When we found out we got the fastest combination we were kind of laughing about it—it’s a fun bragging rights thing.”
By Erin Strout, Runner's World
Johnny Gregorek, a member of the New Jersey-New York Track Club, knew the indoor Mile race at Boston University last Sunday, Feb. 26 would result in a fast time—reliable pacing was set up, two of his teammates were racing, and Edward Cheserek was going for an NCAA record.
The race went according to plan. Cheserek, finishing in 3:52:01, won and set the new collegiate mark. Kyle Merber, Gregorek’s teammate, was right on Cheserek’s heels in a best time of 3:52.22. Then Gregorek crossed the line in 3:53.15—also a personal record.
It wasn’t until later that Gregorek, 25, found out that his race result also meant he and his dad, John Gregorek, 56, are now the fastest father-son duo. It’s an unofficial mark, but only 10 such fathers & sons have ever broken the coveted 4 minute Mile mark. The senior Gregorek competed for Georgetown University and twice made the U.S. Olympic team in the 3000 meter steeplechase (1980 & 1984). He also ran a 3:51.34 Mile in 1982.
“Maybe Centro will answer back with another PR and we’ll have to battle back-and-forth for the title,” Gregorek said.
Although the record isn’t an official one—the full list is kept by the Bring Back the Mile organization—it holds some sentimental meaning for at least one son who carries on the speedy traits of his father.
“It’s nice to be able to share this with my dad, somebody I look up to,” Gregorek said. “The whole family was pretty excited about it. I hear about all the great things my dad did before I was born and when I was young and it’s cool to add to his legacy and maybe start one of my own at the same time.”
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