One More Look Back At Distance Night In Palatine

One of the season's most exciting races occurred on the night of April 20. The boys' championship mile was no joke.




There were many quality races at the Annual Distance Night in Palatine held at Palatine High School. Arguably, the most exciting battle of the evening occurred during the main event, the boys' mile. With esteemed MileSplit IL commentator Ray Lewis on the call, it was easy to get excited.

The championship level field included the likes of Trey Sato (Sr., Grayslake Central), Camyn Viger (Sr., Plainfield South), Patrick Hilby (Sr., Aurora Central Catholic), Gavin Genisio (Sr., Benton), Aden Bandukwala (Sr., Hinsdale Central), and Dylon Nalley (Sr., Marion).

As usual, it was very cold as the runners assembled on the starting line for the final event of the evening.

Immediately and ironically, Genisio assumed the pole position on the backstretch, leading the charge through the first 220 yards in approximately 30 seconds.

Genisio competed with Nalley in the 3200 m less than 24 hours prior at the Eastern Relays in Louisville, Kentucky.

Genisio did not show any physical signs of fatigue in the early going, crossing the first 400y in 61.5. He was more than two seconds ahead of the chase pack.

At the halfway mark, Genisio increased his margin over his foes by three seconds, checking in at 2:05.18.

At the 1000m mark, Genisio continued his crusade, but the pack was closing in on him.

Sato was the first to show courage and go after Genisio as they entered the final lap. Though Genisio led at the 1320y in 3:11.03, he was on the brink of collapse. Sato rolled past him just after the finish line. 

Sato turned on the gas with 300m to go, probably to get away from the speedy Hilby, who appeared to measure every step of his race up to this point.

With the crowd on its feet, Hilby pulled up next to Sato with 150m to go. However, it would be for not, Sato was able to stay calm and persevere in the challenge. He won the biggest race to date in 4:12.08.