Sometimes it's best to leave the theatrics until after you've crossed the finish line.
Kiwi middle distance runner Geordie Beamish helped American counterpart Craig Engels learn this lesson at the recent Prefontaine Classic meeting in Oregon, with a late surge seeing Beamish finish over the top at take out the international mile race.
As the runners made the turn into the home straight, Engels took the lead and made a gesture to the crowd. Rounding the bend in fourth, Beamish began his charge inside the final 100m and finished strong, leaving Engels to throw his head back in surprise as the Kiwi came flying down his outside.
Beamish won in 3:54.86, a personal best for the 24-year-old from Whanganui, with Engels second in 3:55.41. The first eight runners in the race dipped under the four-minute mark for the mile.
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Beamish admitted the early celebrations from Engels urged him on as he glanced at the big screen entering the final dash down the straight.
"I got to watch Craig try to celebrate with 100 to go," Beamish told Oregonlive. "I had a bit left down the home stretch."
Engels took his blunder on the chin, admitting he thought he had the race in the bag.
"I just knew it would be a sit-and-kick. I thought I had it with 100 to go. I didn't have it and got outkicked," Engels told Oregonlive.
"I still had so much fun. It is so much fun running in front of this crowd."
He also showed he was still a good sport after the race, being the first to congratulate Beamish on his win.