Justyn Knight, and his kick, are back.
The Canadian raced for the first time since the 2017 IAAF World Championships on Friday at the 2017 Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational, one of the largest NCAA cross-country races in the United States. Knight, who attends Syracuse University, took the victory over Canadian-born Grant Fisher in similar fashion as 2016 to defend the title he won last year.
Knight, who finished ninth in the world over 5,000m in London in August,t ran 23:38.5 for 8K to edge Fisher by 0.4 seconds, taking the lead only in the final metres of the race. Former Arizona runner Lawi Lalang is the only other male runner to have won two individual titles at the Wisconsin Invitational.
Charlotte Prouse, who transferred to New Mexico from Washington this past summer, was the top Canadian in the women’s race, finishing seventh in 19:54.1. The women contested 6K.
Knight’s result was one of three top-25 performances by Canadians in the men’s race including Mike Tate and Ben Flanagan, who finished 18th and 22nd overall, respectively. The NCAA Division One Cross-Country Championships are Nov. 18 in Kentucky.