Running Prodigy Mary Cain Goes Pro

17-year-old continues under Salazar

Mary Cain (far left) competes in a 1500-meter heat at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow on August 11, 2013. The 17-year-old announced today that she's turning pro. (Anja Niedringhaus / Associated Press)

Mary Cain, the record-smashing runner from Bronxville High School, announced today that she plans to become a professional athlete under the continued coaching of legendary runner Alberto Salazar.

“For the past couple of months, my family and I have been debating whether I should compete at a collegiate or professional level going forward," Cain said in a statement. "I have decided, and am truly excited to announce, that I will be turning pro. I believe that, in the long run, this is the best way for me continue to develop as an athlete."

As we reported in August, the high-school senior has enjoyed an exceptional year. She set three American Junior Records in the 800 meter (1:59.51), 1500 meter (4:04.62) and indoor mile (4:28.25). Cain won the USATF Indoor mile title in March, and finished second in the 1500 meter in the USATF Championships in June to earn a place on the World Championships team for Moscow. There, she finished an impressive tenth in the 1500. 

Cain's parents emphasized that their daughter’s education is still important. “Mary is a straight-A student and will be pursuing a college education while competing,” her father, Charles, said in a statement. “This remains a priority, and we think this approach is the best way to balance her educational and athletic goals.”

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