Sunday, September 21, 2014

Preview No. 2 of USATF Masters 5K Championship Road Race-Women 55 and up

Here is the preview of the women's W55 and up age categories in the USA Track and Field 5K Masters Championships to be held in Syracuse, NY on October 5, 2014.

For details on the history of the meet, the course description, and the organization of the races, please see my earlier posts on the men's race and on preview number 1 for the women.

[Preview based upon information available online as of Sep. 21, 2014 9:00 pm]

W55. In 2013 Leslie Chaplin (GA) ran to a decisive victory in 19:31; Suzanne Myette (NY) followed her across the line in 20:52. And Elizabeth Beslo (NY) took the 3rd place medal in 23:00.
Leslie Chaplin elated over her W55 national championship in the USATF 800 Meter Run

But none of these three is yet entered. In looking at those who are entered, it appears that Ena Weinstein (Atlanta Track Club, GA) who ran in the W50 group  last year, will be a strong contender, as she clocked a 20:19 last year. Joan Miller (Liberty Athletic Club, MA) could also be in the hunt for the podium as she recently ran 20:55 for a 5K.

W60. Last year 2013 Masters Woman Runner of the Year, Kathy Martin, took this age group by
Kathy Martin, setting her indoor 3000 meter world record in 2012

storm with an incredible 19:06 time, beating her closest competitor by 2 minutes. Edie Stevenson (CO), no slouch herself, came in at a very respectable 21:09, holding off Erika Campbell (NJ) who
Edie Stevenson, interviewed at the USATF 8K championships a couple of years ago

nailed down third place with her 21:24. Stevenson and Campbell should both move up to the W65 age group but they are not entered there yet either. Martin is also absent from the list of W60 registrants. Of those who are registered, it appears that Victoria Crisp (TN) would be the favorite; she has a 21:09 5K to her credit this year along with a 44:26 10K.
Victoria Crisp, capturing a 5 miler Masters Crown in Tennessee a few years back

Coreen Steinbach (Athena Track Club) who ran a 22:00 in 2013, finishing just off the podium, is back this year to see if she can improve on that. Martin has run strongly all year long but has not been heard of in race postings since August 10th. I hope that just means she sensibly took some time off from racing and we will see Martin at her peak in Syracuse.

W65. In 2013, Jan Holmquist (MA) took the first place medal decisively with a time of 21:08.A few
Jan Holmquist, in action for the Liberty Track Club
minutes later, Susan Gustafson (MA) and Lenora Weber (MA) followed her across for a Bay State sweep of the age group. Of those three only Gustafson is currently entered, and should certainly contend for the podium. Holmquist has moved up to W70. But, as noted above, it appears Stevenson and Campbell have moved up to replace her in W65. If so and if they enter they would be strong contenders for the podium. Perhaps more significantly the outstanding Masters runner, Sabra Harvey (TX) is entered for the first time since 2011 when she ran 20:09. This year she has a 19:57
Sabra Harvey, smoking her age group in the 2013 Houston Marathon 5K
5K on the books and a 42:37 at the USATF 10K championships.  Harvey would come in as the favorite even if Stevenson and Campbell run too. That would be quite a barn burner of a race if all 3 show up!

W70. Last year Sue Gardinier (NY), Carrie Parsi (MA), and Charlene Francis (MA) took the podium positions in 23:43, 26:37, and 28:33 respectively. This year it will be more of a challenge. As mentioned above, Jan Holmquist (MA) took first place in the W65 group with a time of 21:08 so she should be the favorite. Parsi moves up to W75 but Francis is entered and should contend for the podium again. However, two other new entrants, Margie Stoll  and Ruth Thelen (both of
Margie Stoll,pictured at a track workout in 2008

Playmaker's Elite/New Balance) should give her all she can handle, as both have recorded 5K times around 25:00 within the last year. If they can match that in Syracuse, they should join Holmquist on the podium.

W75. In 2013 Tami Graf (MD), Edna Hyer (NY), and Helen Botti (NY) finished 1-2-3 in 32:15, 37:05, and 40:57. Hyer moves up to W80 this year but Botti is entered already; so far no sign of Graf or Parsi (who moves up from W70) . But the celebrated Master's runner,
Libby James, running in Colorado

Libby James (CO), will apparently make the trek east this year to compete in Syracuse. She will be the favorite for first place based on current form, a sub 25 minute 5K on the books this year, and her many age group wins and records over the years. It will be a real treat to see her run in Syracuse and to see if she can claim yet another age group record.

W80. Last year Anny Stockman (Team Utopia, NY) had the race all her way as she was a solo winner in 35:20. It is worth noting, however, that time would have gotten her 2nd place in the W75
Anny Stockman, crossing the finish line at Sean's Run this year

group. This year she will have to contend with Edna Hyer (Checkers AC, NY ) who moves up from W75 to give her a race. On paper Stockman should be strong enough to hold off Hyer for the gold but that's why we run races.It will be great to see which of these two excellent masters runners prevails.

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