Thursday, October 30, 2014

Recap of USATF 15K Masters National Championships at The Tulsa Run on October 25, 2014

October 30 2014. The latest national masters championship was hosted by The Tulsa Federal Credit Union 15K Run on Saturday, October 25 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This 15K Masters national road championship was the 6th stop on the USATF  Masters 2014 road circuit, comprised of the Half Marathon (Melbourne, FL), 8K (Brea, CA), 10K (Dedham, MA), 1 Mile (Flint, MI), 5K (Syracuse, NY), 15K (Tulsa, OK), and 12K (Alexandria, VA). A new course layout for The Tulsa Run was presented to the competitors this year due to construction of A Gathering Place for Tulsa along the river bank area where the route had previously gone. It is now a more urban route and, according to Heath Aucoin, Race Director, slightly hillier than the old course, and therefore more scenic. Unless the review of the course after the race reveals unanticipated problems, it is likely to be the course going forward. 

In my conversations with runners, no one seemed very concerned about hills on the course but they did note that on this day the heat was a challenge.The day was unseasonably warm with a high of 88 compared to an average high of 70 degrees. Of course at the start of the race [8:50 AM] it was not hot, but clear skies and mid to upper 60's at the start with the temperature rising into the 70's is challenging for a 15K (9.3 miles) race. Whether due to the new course or the unexpected weather challenge on the day, times were a bit slower than last year. But some rip roaring performances were turned in and there were some tight age group races on the men's side.

Here's a photo of the start:
And the Masters runners are off! Mitchell (far right) and Fairchild (middle/right) stride out toward the front but Pilcher, Hansen, Rejimbal and Weiner are off to a speedy start too. [photo:Chris Barnes at]
Overall Races. The race for the overall masters championship and first place prize money of $500 is the main event. Melody Fairchild, a decorated and record setting high school runner, and an All-American at the University of Oregon, has been regularly setting the pace since joining the masters ranks last year. She is the 2014 national 10K champion and the defending 2013 15K champion. 
Melody Fairchild, intent on her finishing kick! [photo:Chris Barnes at]

The Women's Overall Masters race was won by the renowned Masters runner, Melody Fairchild of Boulder, Colorado. 

Melody Fairchild repeats as USATF 15K Masters Champion on October 25, 2014 [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]

Successfully defending her title at Tulsa by a wide margin, Fairchild won in a time of 54:53 [per mile pace =5:53]. Second place was captured by Terri Rejimbal of Tampa, FL. Winner of the masters competition in the famous Gasparilla Half Marathon [Tampa, FL] and the equally renowned Fifth Third River Bank Run [Grand Rapids, MI], Rejimbal finished in a time of 61:45 [per mile pace=6:37]. 
Terri Rejimbal claims the silver medal in the 2014 USATF 15K Masters Championships in Tulsa, OK [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]

Deborah Torneden of Andover, KS. took the third place trophy with a time of 66:28.
Deborah Torneden, takes the overall bronze medal with a gritty performance. [photo:Chris Barnes at]
 It had originally looked like there would be an epic battle on the Men's side for Overall Champion as Kevin Castille and Greg Mitchell were both entered. Castille and Mitchell had locked horns at the national master's half marathon championship in Melbourne, FL in February with honors going to Castille by 27 seconds. Since that time, Castille had collected championships at the Gate River Run, Grandma's Half Marathon, the Peachtree Road Race, the Utica Boilermaker, and Joan Benoit Samuelson's Beach to Beacon 10K. Mitchell, in the meantime, had won the national 8K Cross Country Championship and scored national road wins at the 8K masters championship in Brea, CA and in the 5K masters championship in Syracuse, NY. 
Greg Mitchell, sprinting for the finish line! [photo:Chris Barnes at]

Unfortunately it was not to be as Castille  had to cancel out of the race due to the flu. So there was little contest for first but the race for second and third was very tight. 

Without a close rival, Mitchell shot off at the starting gun and never looked back, winning the overall masters race by nearly 4 minutes in a time of 48:30 [per mile pace=5:12]. 
Greg Mitchell takes the gold in the 2014 USATF 15K National Championship Race at Tulsa, OK [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]

Second place went to Robert Weiner of Evergreen, Colorado in a time of 52:17 [per mile pace=5:36]. 
Rob Weiner, taking the silver medal with determination! [photo:Chris Barnes at]]

The former Pitt All American, 

a dominating force in Colorado road running and a top masters marathoner, outlasted another stellar runner, Francis Burdett of Hilliards, PA, running for the Greater Springfield Harriers out of Massachusetts. Burdett blazed to a 52:31 [per mile pace = 5:38] falling just 14 seconds short of Weiner at the tape.
Talk about a gritty performance; Francis Burdett captures the bronze medal overall. [photo:Chris Barnes at]]

Age Group Races.

This recap will focus primarily on the men's age group races because most of the women's races were uncontested. Apparently some of the women's teams that had been expecting to come and compete ran into some problems that prevented them from competing. The top 3 in each age group win medals and the overall winner in each group also wins a cash prize of $200.

M40.  A few minutes after Greg Mitchell cruised home with the overall and age group victory, local runner, Jason Butler, from Oklahoma City, nailed down second place in a time of 52:53 [per mile pace=5:40] 
Jason Butler, Oklahoma City, OK, finishes strong to capture 2nd place in the Men's 40-44 age division and 4th overall [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]

over the Atlanta Track Club runner from Covington, Georgia, Brent Fields, in 54:03 [per mile pace=5:48].
Brent Fields, Atlanta TC, storming to the tape at the end of a grueling run. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

M45. This was the closest race of the day with fewer than 2 seconds per mile separating the top two runners, Weiner and Burdett who finished 2nd and 3rd overall. After those two came James Jackson, of Denton, TX.
Texan runner, James Jackson, blazes to a top five Masters finish overall and a bronze medal in his division.  [photo:Chris Barnes at]

M50. William Moore, of Dallas, Texas, owned the M50 division with a time of 54:46 (pace=5:52), coming in 3 minutes ahead of his closest rival. Jeff Haertl of Atlanta, GA took 2nd in 57:51 (pace = 6:12) 
Jeff Haertel, silver medalist in the M50 division. [photo:Chris Barnes at]
and Joseph Mora of Fayetteville, NY took 3rd in 59:21.

M55. Another tight race was expected in the M55 division and, although not quite as close as anticipated,  the runners did not disappoint. This division had 3 of the top 4 age graded performances (see below). In the end, Joe Sheeran was able to defend the honor of the Pacific Northwest in 54:38, the best age-adjusted run of the day.  
Joe Sheeran, sprinting all the way through the tape to claim first place in his division AND the Age-Graded gold medal.[photo:Chris Barnes at]

Brian Pilcher, from Ross, California, showed that his comeback continues to be a work in progress, but he is still one of the best runners in the country even when not at the top of his game.
Brian Pilcher, 2014 Masters Runner of the Year, coming back from injury, finishing strong, shows he's still one of the toughest runners out there![photo:Chris Barnes at]

Pilcher took 2nd over a very tough age division field, finishing with the 2nd best age-adjusted performance of the day in 55:43. Last year, at the top of his game, he took top honors in that category. Rounding out the medals in this division was Ken Youngers, one of the stalwarts of the Atlanta Track Club, in 56:16.9.
Ken Youngers, finishing strong and smooth. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

M60. Joseph Reda, of DeForest, Wisconsin, took the top prize in this division, finishing in 59:24 (pace = 6:22 per mile) to bring the title home to the Badger State. 
Joseph Reda, finishing with bounce in his stride, to take the coveted M60 crown! [photo:Chris Barnes at]

He held off the very talented Masters runner from Huntington Beach, California, Dale Campbell, who came in at 61:07 (pace=6:33/mile). Campbell was stepping up in distance and showed that he can be a factor at the longer races. 
Dale Campbell, finishing off a sterling 2nd place effort in the M60 division! [photo:Chris Barnes at]

Devin Croft, from the neighboring state of Colorado, was not far behind in a time of 63:49 (pace = 6:50/mile).
Devin Croft, bronze medal winner in the hard-fought M60 division. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

M65. Lloyd Hansen took this title handsomely. Despite the lack of opposition, he ran a blazing 61:03 (pace=6:33/mile) coming in ahead of many a younger runner. 

Lloyd Hansen speeds to the tape for a gold medal in the M65 division, with time to spare. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

M70. The remarkable masters runner, the Silver Bullet from Milford, MI. and Masters Runner of the Year in his age division in 2013 for the 7th consecutive year, Doug Goodhue, claimed another national championship. 
Doug Goodhue speeds to the finish as he defends his M70 crown. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

His time was 65:59 [per mile pace = 7:04], over two minutes ahead of the second place finisher. Jan Frisby of Grand Junction, Colorado, had hoped to make this an even closer race but, in the end, was satisfied with 68:14 [per mile pace = 7:19]. He is on the comeback trail from a foot injury and is enjoying competing again but has not quite regained his former fitness. If Frisby's fitness continues to come back, the rivalry of Goodhue vs. Frisby will be a great one to watch in 2015. Charles Mabry, of Springfield, Missouri, took 3rd in 75:43. 

M75. Fay Bradley, of Independence, Kansas, took this title unopposed in a time of 91:12 (pace = 9:47/mile). 


W40. Melody Fairchild (Boulder, CO) won the age division by over 20 minutes. 

W45. Terri Rejimbal (Tampa, FL) won this age division.

W50. Deborah Torneden (Andover, KS) won this age division. Torneden took second in the USATF Half Marathon W50 division in 1:28:04 in February. A silver medal in Florida and a gold in Tulsa; her travels have been rewarding.

W55. Andriette Wickstrom (Storm Lake, IA) won this age division in 69:47 (7:29/mile pace). A finisher in the Boston marathon earlier this year in 3:45:56, were it not for the heat, this 15K race would have seemed like a stroll through the park by comparison.
Andriette Wickstrom survives the heat to take fourth overall and win the W55 division. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

W60. Coreen Steinbach (Pompey, NY) won this age group in 72:50 (7:48/mile pace), bringing home her 2nd national age group championship this year. Winner of the USATF 5K road championship 3 weeks ago, Steinbach showed that she can also go the distance.
Coreen Steinbach, sprinting home to take the gold in the W60 division. [photo: Chris Barnes at]

Age-Grading Results. This statistical procedure adjusts runner's times for their age and gender by comparing them to the best possible time in the world for that age and gender. In most cases the world's best time is set on a course that is quite flat and on a reasonably good weather day, neither too hot nor too cold, often with top competition in the race. Age-grading is always a good tool for comparing the quality of times across different age groups within a given race. Age-graded scores are on a 1% to 100% scale, with 100% meaning the athlete's time is equivalent to the best possible time. If a course is hilly or the temperature is hot, then age-graded scores are impacted negatively. Both factors were at work on October 25th. USATF values age-grading highly and puts a fair amount of change into age-grading prize money. The age-grading champs, Fairchild and Sheeran walked away with $1000 checks. And the rest of the top 10 received handsome checks ranging from $100 up to $700.

As noted above, on the men's side the M55 group was dominant once times were adjusted. Three of the top four spots went to Sheeran, Pilcher, and Youngers. The gold and silver medalists, Mitchell and Weiner, tucked in for third and fifth in age-grading, with Hansen, Burdett and Goodhue rounding out the top 8.All were well up into the nationally competitive times with Sheeran's 90.12% classified as 'world class' even given the tough conditions.

Fairchild had a big payday, carrying home the victor's spoils for overall winner, age group winner and top in the age-grading competition at 87.5%. Steinbach took second with a nationally competitive rating of 85.6%.

Teams. Unfortunately no women's teams were able to compete but there was some vigorous competition on the Men;s side with the Atlanta Track Club, the "Beasts from the Southeast", dominating the two younger age categories and the Ann Arbor Track Club, the "Best from the Upper Midwest", dominating the veteran categories.

M40+. The Atlanta Track Club (Brent Fields, Matthew Whitis, Victor Breedveld) took this category with a top-3 time of 2:44:36 or an average of 54:51; that's flying! They took the title by 11 minutes over the local favorites, the OK Runner Elite (Jason Butler, Roger Lemmons, Jason Hatfield).
Roger Lemmons helps the OK Elite team to the Team Silver Medal in the Men's 40+ division at the USATF 15K National Championships [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]

M50+. The Atlanta Track Club (Ken Youngers, Jeff Haertel, John Kissane) ruled this division as well, finishing with a time of 2:58:19 or an average of  59:26. 
John Kissane finishing with conviction to help the Atlanta Track Club win the gold medal at the 2014 USATF 15K Masters Championships [photo:Defining Moments (Oklahoma City, OK): David Prentice and Michael Mayberry]
They were able to beat a formidable foe in the Genesee Valley Harriers (Joseph Mora, Mark Rybinski, Gene Jensen) who traveled from upstate New York to take second in this division with both Mora and Rybinski breaking 60 minutes.
Mark Rybinski, helping the Genesee Valley harriers to an impressive silver medal showing in the M50+ division.[photo:Chris Barnes at]

M60+. Now we switch to the Ann Arbor Track Club (Lloyd Hansen, John Tarkowski, Eduardo Matsuo) who ran away with this category, winning by nearly ten minutes 
Eduardo Matsuo, helping Ann Arbor Track Club to a gold medal in the M60+ division. [photo:Chris Barnes at]

from a very tough Boulder Road Runners team (Devin Croft, Jan Frisby, Doug Bell). Ann Arbor TC had a top-3 time of 3:11:45 for an average of  63:55 per runner, pretty amazing!

M70+. Doug Goodhue led his group of veteran runners to another fine victory, with Ann Arbor Track Club (Doug Goodhue, John Farah, Philip Kroll) taking home the gold medal in a time of 3:47:19.  

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Upcoming Races for me and others--November

October 25, 2014. For the first time in a couple of months, I can list upcoming races with some hope that I will compete in them. After a couple of weeks in PT focusing on strengthening and flexibility exercises for the hamstring and hip abductor, I am seeing results. I am under orders to run within myself so as not to aggravate the injury. So far, so good. I was able to average 7:40 per mile in the Medical Center 10K at Bowling Green, KY.  As part of a workout this past Wednesday I was able to run the last two miles of a 5.5 mile workout at 7:10/mile pace, a very smooth cruise it seemed. Yesterday was a Friday and I thought I would try running on the cross country course at Northview to see how slightly more rugged terrain would go. It was okay although I hope to be stronger so that in the race on Nov 8th I don't need to pick my way too carefully. I jogged the entire course to learn it and then ran it in 24:16. Not back to my normal pace yet but not horrible, considering it's a training run at 75-80%.

So here are some upcoming road and cross country races:

November 2, 2014 New York City Marathon. Indianapolis Monumental Marathon.
[Both are relatively flat and fast as marathons go. NYC is slightly better known but IMM is definitely growing. :-)]

November 8, 2014   USATF National Masters 5K Cross Country Championships []
at Northview Church Cross Country Course in Carmel, IN (greater Indy). From age group 40-44 to age group 80-84, some of the fastest masters runners in the country will converge on our fair city/metro area to compete for top individual and team prizes. I hope to compete as part of the Athletic Annex Indy 60+ team but we lost one of our runners and are trying to recruit at least one more for a complete team. If that fails, I will run as an individual.

November 14, 2014  USATF National Road Racing Championship (12K). Alexandria, VA.
This race, called the US National 12, is the finale for the USA Running Circuit (open elite athletes) but it is also a Masters Championship. If my recovery continues apace and I run well in the 5K XC race, I may compete in this race, too. Last year I had a freak injury resulting from a spill off a ladder for this race and ran, but did not run well. I had hoped to return this year in full fitness to redeem myself. That probably won't happen but if I feel I can come and at least run better than last year, I will probably choose to compete. But I won't fully decide until after the 8th. USATF encourages all Masters Long Distance Runners to compete in this event if healthy.

December 13, 2014 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships 6K/10K for women and men for both Masters and Open Runners. Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA.
This seves as the principal national team selection race for the 2015 BUPA XC meet to be held in Edinburgh, Scotland.  It is expected that 5-6 runners will be selected from the top finishers in the men's and women's Open races. Be warned that in the event of snow, it will be cleared to a 1" layer on the course, if possible. At the discretion of the officials, if snow is too deep for that to be an effective option, the race will proceed over a 2K loop near the football field, instead of the normal course. So keep a weather eye.

USATF Masters Races currently on the 2015 calendar:

February 7, 2015 US Cross Country Championships for Open and Masters Athletes. Boulder, CO.

February 22, 2015 USATF 8K Masters Road Championship.Brea, CA

April 26, 2015 USATF 10K Masters Road Championship. Dedham, MA

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

USATF Masters Marathon Results at Twin Cities Marathon on October 5, 2014--Recap

October 21 2014. Although I could not be in the Twin Cities for the USATF Masters competition on October 5th, I am providing the summary below based on watching the replay (which focuses on the open elites, not masters, but does occasionally catch one of the masters athletes), checking the official USATF results, and reading a Star-Tribune story on the Masters competition [].

The Medtronics Twin Cities Marathon has been the USATF Championship race for decades, perhaps since 1991, according to Don Lein, Chair of USATF Masters Long Distance Running. Lein says it is the most venerable of the USATF championship races. It is known as a tough race course with significant inclines in the second half of the race; times tend to be several minutes slower than the fastest times on flat courses like Chicago and Berlin, where many world bests have been run.So these are stories of incredible athletes who ran a tough race; do not compare the times to other marathon times you know about to get a sense of the effort and accomplishment.

Overall Masters. Those who follow Masters Long Distance Running, were looking forward to this competition as a real battle between two outstanding masters runners. Kevin Castille has been on fire this year, winning Masters Championship titles at iconic races like Peachtree (10K), the Boilermaker (15K), the Beach to Beacon (10K) and Falmouth (7.mile), and running a sub 46 minute 15K at the Gate River Run. Defending 2013 USATF Masters Marathon Champion, Mbarak Hussein, had to accept 2nd at Peachtree and the Boilermaker, but has had more success over the years at the longer distance, defeating Castile by 39 seconds in the 2013 edition of the TC Marathon. Well into the race the cameras caught Castille, but not Hussein, in the chase pack about a minute behind the lead pack. But at the end of the day the race went to Hussein who won the race in a time of 2:22:27.
Running USA - Runners of Interest - Mbarak Hussein
Mbarak Hussein in Action [photo from]
It was a joyous occasion for Hussein on two accounts. He repeated as overall Masters winner and at age 49, that is a major accomplishment. He also finished 14th overall in the open race. Then he learned, right after the race, that his wife, Liana, had gone into labor with their first child back home in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After turning off his race accelerator, an accelerated trip home was his new focus. Michael Wardian, age 40, [Arlington VA] who also participates in ultra marathons, was apparently closing on the leader in the last few miles but ran out of time and ground as he came in 18
Michael Wardian on the Trails [photo:]

seconds back in 2:22:45. Jason Ryf, a 43 year old from Oshkosh, WI. who ran collegiately at UW-Stevens Point but improved considerably after graduating, cruised across the finish line
Jason Ryf [photo:]

a couple of minutes later to claim the third spot on the podium in 2:24:55. Hussein's racing was quite amazing! He ran the first half marathon in 1:08:56 and then ran another half marathon in 1:13:31! For a 49 year old athlete, that is covering some ground!
      The woman's race was not as close, but also had a repeat winner with Sheri Piers. 43, of Falmouth, ME, taking the top prize in 2:42:46, and finishing 12th overall in the women's race.
Despite confusion, Falmouth runner was in fact top American woman at Boston Marathon
Sheri Piers, ruling the roads [photo:]

Second went to multi-sport Olympic Trials Qualifier, Joanna Zeiger, of Boulder, CO, in 2:46:13, followed by Kristin Barry, of Scarborough, ME in 2:52:19. With a 1st and a 3rd for the state of Maine, it is clear that Piers and  
Multi-sport Phenom, Joanna Zeiger [photo:]

Barry are doing an excellent job following in the footsteps of the storied Maine Olympic gold medalist, Joan Benoit Samuelson.
Kristin Barry, breaking the Maine record for the TD Beach to Beacon 10K in 2008 [photo:]

Overall Age-Grading  Masters Competition. USATF Masters LDR also awards prizes across age groups on the basis of age-grading. An age-grading score that adjusts for age-related slowing factors is generated for each competitor. Best-possible times for each race distance, for each age, have been predicted from analyzing all of the top performances at every age for both men and women. If the 'best time' possible for a 60 year old male is 2:33:11, and such a person actually runs 3:03:37 that gets an age graded score of 83.42% because the best possible time, 153.183 minutes, is 83.52% of the actual time, 183.617 minutes. These age graded times can then be compared across age groups.

In this case the overall winner and the age-graded winner for men are one and the same but that is often not the case. The other unusual thing about this  men's age-grading competition is that  no one over the age of 52 was in the top 8. At most other USATF races competed at shorter distances, men in their 60's and 70's are often in the top age-graded group. However many of those runners eschew the marathon because training for it and recovering from it take up a huge portion of the racing year. The women's age grading top eight is closer to the norm with two women in their 50's and one woman in her 60's.

Men. The top 3 age-grading scores for men were turned in by Mbarak Hussein [97.03%], the indomitable Tracy Lokken, age 49, from the big woods of Marquette, MI with a 2:31:10 that
Tracy Lokken, Masters Marathoner at 2011 Twin Cities Marathon [photo:]

translates into a 91.44%, and Jason Ryf [90.56%]. The fourth and fifth best age graded performances for men were turned in by Michael Wardian [89.67%] and David Williams, 43, from Milwaukee, WI [88.77%---2:27:51]].

Women. The top age-graded performance was turned in by the incredible Masters runner, Christine Kennedy, age 59, who ran the race in 2:59:43 to achieve an age-grading score of 101.29%. Hats off
Running USA - Runners of Interest - Christine Kennedy
Christine Kennedy, 2011 Masters Runner of the Year [photo:]

to this amazing runner who is establishing the standards for elite masters women runners to strive after in the coming decades! Originally from the Emerald Isle, Kennedy now resides in Los Gatos, CA. Kennedy has already announced her goal of running a marathon in her 60th year in under 3 hours. If she can accomplish that, she will also break the record for women 60 years and up by over ten minutes! No one is betting against her.
    Following her in the standings were Sheri Piers [90.60%], Joanna Zieger [89.79%], Margaret Sheridan, 54, of Woodbury, MN [86.20%--- 3:16:47], and Donella Neuhaus, 58, of Minneapolis, MN [85.78%---3:29:09].

Age Group Medals.
M40.    Wardian, Ryf, Williams
M45.    Hussein, Lokken, Tim Meigs Raleigh NC [2:39:13]
M50.    Spyros Barres Mystic CT. [2:38:48], Ricardo Maldonado Fountain Hills AZ                          [2:39:03], John Van Danacker Greenfield MN [2:40:16]
M55.    William Enicks Signal Mountain TN [2:52:22], Paul Crochiere Amesbury MA                                  [2:54:14], Dennis Wallach Chanhassen MN [3:00:44]
M60.    Joseph Haynes Ames IA [3:03:37], Denny Jordan Roseville MN [3:13:31], Bruce                            Seguin Harrison Township MI [3:16:09]
M65.    Ray Tiberg Calumet MI [3:42:46], Mick Justin Nissnea MN [3:48:02], Greg Taylor                          Minneapolis MN [4:03:36]
M70.    Leonard Coequyt Hopkins MN [3:49:03], Norm Purrington Lake Elmo MN [3:56:26],                    Les Martisko N. Mankato MN [5:33:27]
M75.    Ed Rousseau Minneapolis MN [4:31:22], Ilhan Bilgutan Clearwater MN [4:58:51], No 3rd
             place USATF

W40.    Piers, Zeiger, Barry
W45.    Wolski, Lori Moriarty Port Orchard WA [3:12:55], Cindy Harris Indianapolis, IN
W50.    Sheridan, Laurie Hanscom Eden Prairie MN [3:20:52], Linda Green Arden Hills MN
W55.    Kennedy, Neuhaus, Carolyn Fletcher St. Paul MN [3:40:13]
W60.    No USATF finishers.
W65.    Carol Brouillard Spring Lake Pk MN [4:08:34], Carolyn Mather Morgonton GA
             [4:39:03], No 3rd place USATF
W70     Irene Terronez Rio Rancho, NM [6:18:13], No 2nd or 3rd place USATF.

Kudos to all of these prize winners. The Marathon Race is a beast of a different sort. To be running the marathon at all as a masters athlete is a real accomplishment; to be winning prizes is a feat.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Recap of USATF 5K Championship in Syracuse, NY on October 5th-Women's Races

October 15, 2014. There were incredible performances by the women who ran the roads in Syracuse.
All Lined Up and Ready to Roll!

Sabra Harvey, 65, and Jan Holmquist, 70,  broke American 5K age group records in scintillating times, and newly minted Masters runner, Jen Rhines, came 'within a dime' of  breaking Colleen De Reuck's overall master's 5K road race record for women. She took the overall Masters title by more than a minute over a sterling field and set three Syracuse course records [overall masters, W40, and single-age record for age 40] in the process.
Jen Rhines, winning her first USATF Masters title at 5K in Syracuse, NY Oct. 5 2014

Overall [and W40].  The overall masters competition was overshadowed by the appearance of three-time Olympian and still very competitive Open Elite road runner, Jen Rhines [BAA/Boston], and her quest for the record. Even though she did not get the record she was seeking, her 15:58 was within ten seconds of the record and fast enough for a dominant win. Sonja Friend-Uhl [Brentwood, TN]
Sonja Friend-Uhl, a few seconds after crossing the finish line to capture 2nd in the Masters Race

took 2nd place by a good margin in 17:40 but the race for the third spot on the podium was a doozy, with three women finishing within 8 seconds of one another. Holly Ortlund [Decatur, GA] got the third place in a time of 18:08, with Michelle LaFleur [Savannah, GA] and Robyn Holland [Winston Salem, NC] finishing in 4th and 5th, both with a time of 18:16. How's that for racing!

Michelle LaFleur, winning out for 4th place  Masters over Robyn Holland

W45. The Keystone State dominated this division, taking all three places. Leslie Hoey

Leslie Hoey, taking 1st in the W45 division.
[Downingtown, PA] led the way with an 18:54, followed by Linda Hawke [Malvern, PA] in 19:45,
Linda Hawke, capturing 2nd in the W45 division.

and Peggy Conlon [Chester Springs, PA] in 3rd in 20:21.

W50. Marisa Sutera-Strange [Pleasant Valley, NY], Doreen McCoubrie [Malvern, PA] and Julie Hankin [Malvern, PA] came in 1-2-3 for the Athena Track Club, with the top two
Marisa Sutera-Strange, first across the line in the W50 contest

Doreen McCoubrie with another impressive performance on the roads
 cracking the 19 minute barrier in 18:32 and 18:49.

W55. Nancy Stewart [Atlanta, GA], Joan Miller [Chestnut Hill, MA] and Ena Weinstein [Baldwin, GA] contested this division, with Stewart getting the victory and a new single-age Syracuse FoR record in 19:38. Miller and Weinstein followed with times of 21:01 and 21:29

Ena Weinstein makes the podium with this finish in the W55 age group at the national championship

W60. The Genesee Valley Harriers took 2nd and 3rd in this division to storm to the F60+ team championship. Coreen Steinbach [Pompey, NY] took first, however, in a fast 21:38. Sharon Moore [Rochester, NY] and Cindy Ingalls [Pittsford, NY] from GVH followed Steinbach across the line in 22:41 and 23:58 respectively to join her on the podium.

W65. Sabra Harvey [Houston, TX] won this division handily, setting a new American F65 record of 20:27 in the process, breaking the old record by 49 seconds. And, of course, this also gives her the age group and single age records for the Syracuse FoR race course. This adds to her US record collection as she is also the current holder of the W60 8K mark [32:43] and has a record pending certification for the W65 10K [42:37]. Second and third went to Susan Gustafson [Hingham, MA] and Lynda McGuire [Scottsville, NY] in 24:17 and 25:49 respectively.

W70. Jan Holmquist [Burlington, MA] sped along the Syracuse race course, smashing the American 5K record for this group by over a minute, in a time of 22:16. Like Harvey, she is also now the holder of the Syracuse FoR course records for age group and single age. Ruth Thelen and Sue Gardinier joined Holmquist on the podium with Thelen nipping Gardinier 27:39 to 27:56.

W75. The decorated runner from the state of Colorado, Libby James [Fort Collins, CO],

Libby James, taking another national age group first place, at the 2014 USATF 5K Championships
came within 24 seconds of her W75 American record, set two years ago. Her time of 24:00 flat gave her the victory in this group with Madeline Bost [Randolph, NJ] taking second.

W80. Anny Stockman and  Edna Hyer had quite a battle in this division but Stockman pulled away over the course of the race to win with a sizable victory margin, 35:46 to 38:16.

Team Races.

W40+. Atlanta Track Club [Sonja Friend-Uhl, Holly Ortlund, Nancy Stewart] won the division handily in a time of 55:26. Genesee Valley Harriers [Melissa Senall, Erika Duthiers, Audra Naujokas-Knapp] edged the Athena Track Club [Leslie Hoey, Linda Hawke, Peggy Conlon] by a mere ten seconds, in 58:50, to take the second spot.

W50+. The Athena TC [Marisa Sutera-Strange, Doreen McCoubrie, Julie Hankin] took this one going away, winning by almost 6 minutes in a time of 57:54. Athen TC-B [Mary Swan, Betsy Stewart, Coreen Steinbach] had a tight race with the GVH [Beth Deciantis, Carol Bischoff, Colleen Magnussen] but won out for the 2nd spot on the podium  63:49 to 64:38.

W60+. The GVH [Sharon Moore, Cindy Ingalls, Carolyn Smith-Hanna] took this one easily in a time of 70:42, defeating the Liberty Athletic Club [Jan Holmquist, Susan Gustafson, Lenore Webber] and the Syracuse Chargers [Suzanne Leone, Ruth Ripley, Connie Ciccone] who clocked 73:09 and 74:14 for 2nd and 3rd.

W70+. The Playmakers Elite/New Balance team [Ruth Thelen, Ellen Nitz, Janet Wallen] from Michigan ran away from the Checkers AC Christa Meier, Fran Rowe, Edna Hyer] in 88:17 to win by 20 minutes.