Jackson Barna erased any questions about his health by throwing down one of the greatest performances ever by a New Jersey runner when the senior star at Ridge torched the legendary layout at Van Cortlandt Park with a sizzling 12:04.8 to win the Eastern States Championship race at Saturday's 49th Manhattan Invitational in the Bronx, N.Y.
The 12:04.8 by the Georgetown-bound Barna, who dropped out of the Shore Coaches Invitational last week near the halfway mark after rolling an ankle, moves him all the up to No. 5 on Van Cortlandt's all-time list for the historic 2.5-mile course, which has been used since the 1960s. Barna is also now No. 3 all-time among NJ runners on the course.
Barna, who led NJ No. 2 Ridge to a sixth-place in the loaded Easterns race, put his name alongside some of the legends of the sport.
Check out the names on Van Cortlandt's updated top five all-time list!
11:55.4-Edward Cheserek, St. Benedict's Prep, NJ, 2011 (Cheserek also ran 11:58.7 in 2012)
11:57.2-Alex Ostberg, Darien, Conn., 2014
12:02.3-Bryce Millar, Fayetteville-Manlius, NY, 2014
12:03.8-Joe Rosa, West Windsor-Plainsboro North, NJ, 2009
12:04.8-Jackson Barna, Ridge, NJ, 2021