Jonah Gorevic

Fifth grader runs 5:01 mile, fastest ever for 10-year-old

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Jonah Gorevic broke a world record at the Adidas Grand Prix in front of friends, family and his babysitter.

Gorevic, a rising sixth grader from Rye, N.Y., ran the fastest-ever mile by a 10-year-old at Icahn Stadium in New York on Saturday. Gorevic covered four laps on the blue track in 5 minutes, 1.55 seconds, breaking the previous mark of 5:05.3.

He set his sights on the world record after he ran a 5:09 mile in April, when he was told he was just four seconds off the mark.

“I just wanted to break it so badly,” Gorevic told a group of reporters while wearing his race bib and holding his winner’s flower bouquet (video interview here).

Gorevic said he ran his first mile at age 3 or 4, but that “it was only in a Turkey Trot, so it wasn’t that competitive.” A soccer player, he trains 10-12 miles a week, including a hard interval session on Thursday nights and a long trail run on Saturdays.

His coach, Carl Curran, said Gorevic could have broken 5 minutes in less windy and cooler conditions.

“I was thinking that the 71.5 [seconds for the first 400m lap] was out a little bit fast,” Curran said. “We were hoping at around a 73. But he maintained his middle two laps, which was the really tough ones, and he brought it home in a 73. He had an amazing race. I’m really proud of him.”

The 11-and-under age group record is 4:55, Curran said. That’s the next goal.

“[Gorevic is] just a sponge,” said Curran, who coaches 20 to 25 kids, including two other young All-Americans. “I just point him in a direction, and he just goes.”

USOC chooses 4 finalists for possible 2024 Olympic bid

Ragan Smith delivers in first U.S. championship title win

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ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Ragan Smith embraced the role of heavy favorite coming into the U.S. gymnastics championships.

Thrust into the spotlight for the first time in her career, the 17-year-old hardly appeared intimidated by the stage. Smith pulled away from the field to claim her first national title Sunday, posting a score of 115.250, more than three points clear of Jordan Chiles in second place and Riley McCusker in third.

Smith opened up a 1.3-point lead over McCusker in the opening round Friday but admitted afterward she wasn’t particularly impressed by her own performance. She was considerably sharper less than 48 hours later, her 57.850 total in the finals was the best in the 16-woman all-around field by nearly two points.

Smith is one of the few holdovers from the 2016 Olympic cycle, serving as an alternate for the “Final Five” team that won half of the available medals in Rio de Janeiro last fall. Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, Madison Kocian and Laurie Hernandez are taking breaks or have moved on, leaving Smith as the standard bearer for new national team coordinator Valeri Liukin.

The program appears to be in solid hands. Smith ditched “The Addams Family” themed floor routine she used last year for something a little more mature. It’s not the only part of her gymnastics that has grown up. Smith finished first on floor and beam and tied for third on bars.

Smith will be in the mix for the all-around title at the world championships in Montreal, where she’ll have a chance to extend the U.S.’s dominance. An American woman has won the world or Olympic title each of the last six years. Barring injury, Smith should be right there.

Liukin said he wasn’t alarmed following an uneven performance by the field in preliminaries, calling it a positive step for a group lacking in experience. The gymnastics were markedly improved in the finals.

Chiles slipped by McCusker into second thanks to a fabulous save on beam in which she turned a near disaster into something decidedly artful.

Chiles was in the middle of “wolf turn” (basically spinning on one foot while in a crouch on a 4-inch wide piece of wood) when she nearly fell over. Instead she rose to her feet, kept rotating, and went right into the next part of her routine as if it was planned all along.

Chiles’ steadiness gives Liukin another option as he tries to put together the rest of the four-woman team that will join Smith in Montreal. McCusker, only recently recovered from foot and wrist injuries, tried to keep the heat on Smith but stepped out of bounds following the last tumbling pass on her floor routine. McCusker finished first on bars — her legs practically magnetized together as she went from bar to bar — to win the event with ease.

Ashton Locklear, like Smith an alternate last summer, wound up second on bars with a watered down routine as he makes her way back from her own injury issues and should have time to install upgrades before Montreal.

Whoever heads to Canada in October will go with the usual expectations for what has become the sport’s most dominant program.

MORE: Simone Biles says being back in the gym is “OK” (video)

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Simone Biles says being back in the gym is “OK” (video)

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Simone Biles has competed in the six previous U.S. National Championships, winning the last four, but in Anaheim this year, she’s watching from the sidelines. Biles won four gold medals (team, all-around, vault and floor) and one bronze (on beam) last summer at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

This week she revealed she has returned to the gym to prepare for a yet to be determined event, in her return to competition.

When asked how she’s been doing in the gym by NBC Sports’ Andrea Joyce, Biles responded with her signature smile accompanied by an endearingly bashful eye roll, “the beginning is…OK.”

MORE: Danell Leyva on why he’s retiring

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