14 Sep 2015

Willis wins 5th Avenue Mile again

2:45 pm on 14 September 2015

The New Zealand runner Nick Willis has ended his 2015 season on a high by winning the Fifth Avenue Mile race in New York for the third time.

The New Zealand runner Nick Willis.

The New Zealand runner Nick Willis. Photo: Photosport

The win helps make up for the former Olympic silver medallist's disappointing sixth-place finish in the 1500m at the recent world championships in Beijing.

Willis is just the third man in the event's history to win it three times.

The 32-year-old New Zealander kicked away from the field over the last 200 metres to win in a time of 3:54.9 to add to the titles he won in 2008 and 2013.

A steady headwind made the race more tactical in nature, leaving it until the last quarter-mile to prove who could close the quickest.

"I wanted to make a move once I saw everybody else had hit their maximum speed so that if I was able to go to the next gear, I knew that nobody else would be able to match that again," said Willis.

After his disappointment at the Beijing World Championship where he was sixth in the 1500m final, Willis was happy to finish the year with a win.

"It makes you get a much better head space going into the off-season and then back to the training," he said.

John Walker won the race in 1984.