Sunday, May 6, 2018

USATF 2018 Masters 10K Road Championship- Records Fall Amidst Fantastic Competition

May 6 2018. The Masters 10K Championships were contested for the sixth consecutive year as part of the James Joyce Ramble on the last Sunday in April in the picturesque town of Dedham Massachusetts, founded in 1640.  A record field of over 280 registered runners enjoyed the week ahead forecast of sunny skies and temperatures in the low 60’s. Of course, it being the Greater Boston area in springtime, it was not to be.  But everyone agreed that cloudy skies with sprinkles of rain, 50 degrees and not much wind was certainly just fine. The horn sounded and the Masters Athletes headed off over the rolling hills of the 10K Championship course.
They are off and running 300 meters into the race
The top 4 Women and others at the 300meter mark of the race-2018 USATF 10K Masters Championship

Here is what transpired.


Gene Dykes was fresh from lowering the 70-74 American Record for the Marathon to 2:57:43 in Rotterdam on the 8th of April when he won his Boston Marathon age division by a half hour in challenging, near gale conditions 8 days later in 3:16:20. Now it was only 13 days after Boston and Dykes was looking for another Championship. At first, I had thought he would scratch after two tough Marathons but no, there he was at the starting line smiling and appearing confident, hoping to make voice and eye contact with his main rival before the horn sounded. He was squaring off with William Dixon, 6-time Age Division Road Runner of the Year, who was coming back from an injury that slowed him down last year. But Dixon had run a 19:30 5K recently, after clocking 41:00 in a 10K on St. Patrick’s Day. He seemed primed to break Jan Frisby’s 70-74 American Record of 40:15. Dixon took off at a good pace, but Dykes was right on his heels. They stayed that way as they raced through the center of town, down a short hill and up a longer, steeper one. After running through some quaint neighborhoods, they turned onto High Street to race towards the Noble and Greenough School grounds. Dykes made his decisive move then and Dixon could only watch as Dykes pulled away. When Dixon flashed across the finish line in 39:41, that was the good news; he smashed the American Record by over half a minute-terrific! But he knew that Dykes had preceded him across the finish line; his record-breaking time only netted him second place. Dykes finishes off the kind of month most can only dream of, topping it with the 10K crown and the American 70-74 record of 39:02 (39:04 Gun time for the Championship but net time is used for Masters Records).
Gene Dykes cracks the American 70-74 Record by Over 2 Minutes at the 2018 USATF 10K Championship at the James Joyce Ramble [Thanks to Mike Scott for providing all complimentary photos used here.]

The other record-breaking attempt on the day was Anny Stockman’s assault on the 85-89 Women’s American record. She took down the 5K record last October in Syracuse at the Masters National Championships with a 39:41. The current record listed for the 10K is a 1:35:59 effort by Mary Grosse in 2016 listed as pending. Pending means it has not yet been ratified, but it could be yet. It was on a record-eligible, USATF certified course, so presumably the paperwork could still be submitted by the race. That meant Stockman had to beat it to be sure she had the new record. She knew if she could keep up a 14 minute per mile pace she would claim the record. She actually averaged well under 14; she  claimed a new American Record by over 11 minutes, crossing the finish line in 1:24:50!
Anny Stockman crushes the 80-84 American Record by 11 Minutes


In the race to be first Masters Athlete across the finish line, Roanoke Valley’s David Angell aimed to defend his 2017 Championship and to extend his 2018 winning streak to two, adding this to the 8K title he enjoyed in mid-March. The BAA’s Ryan McCalmon, who finished 2nd last year, and Atlanta’s Kristian Blaich, who finished 3rd, were also in the field. Others to worry about included Philippe Rolly who had finished 3rd behind Angell at the 8k Championship on St Patrick’s Day and took the Masters title at the Chicago Marathon in 2:34:29 last October. David Bedoya, McCalmon’s teammate, had pressed Angell at the Club Cross Country Championships in Lexington Kentucky last December, before finishing 22 seconds back by the end. Garden State’s Sam Teigen also figures in. He finished just behind Rolly at the 8K, and clocked a 2:31:35 of his own in the California International Marathon. The CIM is slightly downhill overall but Chicago is flat and fast, so it is hard to know how to rank those two efforts.

McCalmon led them out through the first mile before Angell surged past into the lead, with Rolly following close. Going out of the town center, Angell surged again and opened up a bit of a gap. By the time Angell was powering up the hill before mile 2, Bedoya had moved into 2nd and was surging to close the gap. That did not happen, however, as Angell accelerated his pace along the flat road through the neighborhoods of Dedham. By the time they were approaching the 3 mile mark, Patrick Rich, who had been biding his time, moved into 2nd. But Angell had a good lead and maintained it all the way to the finish, claiming the win in 32:33, four seconds faster than 2017!
David Angell breaks the tape as the Overall Winner at the 2018 USATF Masters 10K Championships

Rich was not one of the pre-race favorites but showed he should have been, as he held strong all the way to the line, claiming 2nd a half minute back. The final mile is a gradual upslope, but it can be a long pull at the end of a 10K; runners are often overtaken along there. It unfolded that way again as Teigen and the 55 year old wonder, Nat Larson, surged past Bedoya and Rolly to claim 3rd and 4th in 33:22 and 33:24.
David Angell 32:33     Patrick Rich 33:02     Sam Teigen 33:22

Ginger Reiner won here last year in 37:09 and then took the 5km Masters Cross Country title in October. The favorite would have to contend with a strong field however. Jennifer Bayliss is in top form; she won the Masters Race at the USATF Cross Country Championships in early February. Marisa Sutera Strange won here in 2016 with a time of 36:49 and her recent Overall victory at the 8K Championships in Virginia Beach reminded us that she is always a threat. Heather Webster came in ahead of Strange at the 2016 Masters Race at Club Cross Country in Tallahassee. Karolyn Bowley had a strong 1:24:12 New Bedford Half Marathon in March. Finally, Jennifer St. Jean, known more for her prowess on the track, ran 38:17 here in 2015, so should make things interesting. No one would want to hear her footsteps behind them in the final 500 meters! Michelle Simonaitis, who took 2nd behind Strange at the 8K Championships in March, and was a top flight Masters runner a few years ago, might also be a factor.

When the horn sounded, Bayliss moved out to the front of the Women's field, with Reiner falling in right on her heels, and Webster a few strides back. In the first 200 meters, they already had a gap on Strange and Simonaitis, running side by side. And then it was further back to St. Jean who was taking a cautious approach at the start. Bayliss gradually pulled away from Reiner and then Bowley moved up past Webster and then Reiner. Bayliss took the win in 37:19 with Bowley second in 38:02.
Jennifer Bayliss drives to the finish line and the Overall Title at the 2018 USATF Masters 10K Championships

St. Jean who started out cautiously moved up through the pack over the second half of the race. She never quite made it up to the leaders, but finished a strong third in 38:27, nearly a half minute ahead of Strange who took 4th. This gives Bayliss two wins in two tries at USATF National Masters Championships this year.
Jennifer Bayliss  37:19     Karolyn Bowley 38:02     Jennifer St. Jean 38:27


Age-Grading provides a way of measuring how each runner stacks up against a statistically generated World’s Best for their age and sex, with 100% being equivalent to that standard and slower times receiving lower scores. USATF refers to 90% and above as ‘World Class’ and 80% and above as ‘National Class.’ I am trying to popularize the idea of referring to the 85% to 89.99% level as ‘International Class.’ Gene Dykes, 70, got an American record but Nat Larson, 55, had the best age grade, which is based on a World standard. Larson’s 33:24 and 93.90% gave him his 2nd age grading title of the year already.
Nat Larson finishes strong to take 4th Overall and win the Age Grading Championship

Dykes took second with his 39:04 (gun time) and 92.53, with Bill Dixon, 70, right behind at 91.01. Tom Bernhard, 66, 90.80, and Mark Reeder, 58, 90.09, rounded out the cash prize winners.
Nat Larson 93.90     Gene Dykes 92.53     Bill Dixon 91.01

Jan Holmquist, 73, moved up from 2nd last year at this race to take the win with a 50:29 that grades at 93.37%. Marisa Sutera Strange, 54, repeated her 2nd place finish from the 8K Championships last month with a 38:54 and 92.50, just 0.40 ahead of Karen Durante, 67, whose 46:37 netted a 92.10.
Marisa Sutera Strange takes 4th Overall and 2nd in Age Grading

Jeanette Groesz, 67, and Patrice Combs, 60, were also in the money with their 90.55 from 48:08 and 89.99 from 43:13 respectively.
Jan Holmquist 93.37     Marisa Sutera Strange 92.50     Karen Durante 92.10


40-44 As David Angell, Patrick Rich, and Sam Teigen are all from this age division, the Overall Championship story from above works here too as they came 1-2-3, ahead of David Bedoya and Lee Danforth of the HFC striders.
Patrick Rich captures 2nd Overall and in the 40-44 Age Division 10K National Masters Championship

Though Jennifer St. Jean was never able to move all the way up in the overall contest, she did make her way to the front of the division field. Ginger Reiner had gone out with Bayliss at the front of the Women’s race, with Heather Webster tracking them a few strides back. St. Jean caught and passed Webster  and then Reiner. St. Jean clocked 38:27 with Reiner a minute back in 39:28 and Webster 15 seconds further back in 3rd.
Jennifer St Jean takes 3rd Overall and wins the 40-44 Age Division at the 10K National Masters Championships

Ashley Krause of the Western Mass Distance Project was just off the podium with a 40:19.
Jennifer St. Jean 38:27     Ginger Reiner 39:28     Heather Webster 39:43

45-49 The main contenders are no strangers. Philippe Rolly and Jonathan Frieder finished 1-2 at the 8K Championships in Virginia Beach in March. Frieder and Greg Putnam have see-sawed back and forth over the past year. Putnam took Frieder at this race in 2017 33:12 to 33:35 but Frieder had the edge over Putnam on the roads in the fall at the CVS Downtown 5K, the 5K at Syracuse, and the Rothman Institute 8K. Then Putnam bounced back, enjoying a 3 second edge at Club Cross Country. Putnam’s teammate, Derrick Jones, should also play a role. Last year at this race he threw a number of surges at David Angell before Angell finally broke away; Jones was passed in the last few hundred meters by several runners but still managed a 33:04 , finishing ahead of Putnam and Frieder. Jones did not have as strong a fall campaign but his Gate River Run time of 45:20 this spring was within two seconds of his time last year, so his fitness should be similar to last year. Jones went out at the head of the division pack, with Rolly tucked in right behind and then Frieder a couple of strides back from Rolly. It was several more strides to Putnam who was taking a more measured approach to the race, his first after losing time to a hamstring issue. After the first mile Rolly moved past Jones to see if he could stay close to Angell. That proved unworkable but it did give him a gap on Jones and Frieder which he was able to hold until the end, winning the division in 33:33, with Frieder almost catching him!
Philippe Rolly finishes 5th Overall and wins the 45-49 Age Division at the National 10K Masters Championships

Putnam passed Jones, taking 3rd in 34:19, leaving Jones just off the podium in 4th.
Philippe Rolly 33:33     Jonathan Frieder 33:36     Greg Putnam 34:19

The top two women in this age division were the top two overall, Jennifer Bayliss and Karolyn Bowley, in 37:19 and 38:02.
Karolyn Bowley captures 2nd Overall and in the 45-49 Age Division at the 10K National Masters Championships

Then there was a gap of over 6 minutes. Sally Drake, Sharon O’Grady and Melissa Senall battled for the final podium position. O’Grady, who runs for Greater Lowell, had just enough to repel Willow Street’s Drake and GVH’s Senall, claiming 3rd, with Drake 14 seconds back and Senall 30.
Jennifer Bayliss 37:19     Karolyn Bowley 38:02     Sharon O'Grady 44:38

50-54 Nat Larson who finished 2nd in this division last year has aged up. But the 1st place and 3rd through 5th, Kristian Blaich, Kent Lemme, Gregory Picklesimer, and Jason Cakouros, were all registered (although Picklesimer did not run). Lemme’s teammate, Mark Hixson, did not run here last year but when he does, he is usually not far behind Lemme. Blaich ran 32:58 and Lemme 33:32 here, but Lemme finished 48 seconds ahead at the Club Cross Country Championships, their most recent encounter. Francis Burdett, who was struggling with injuries a year ago, has finally gotten back close to the fitness he enjoyed in 2015 when he won the Masters Grand Prix for this age division. He ran 17:04 in the BAA 5K and 35:38 in the Crescent City 10K. Blaich, Hixson and Lemme went off side by side 3 abreast, with Burdett and Cakouros only a few strides back. Once Lemme made his move, he pulled away into ‘No Man’s Land’ but he was comfortable there, and kept it going all the way to the finish, winning the division in 33:50.

Kent Lemme wins the 50-54 Championship at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

Hixson and Blaich, in the meantime, found themselves running with Gregory Putnam from the 45-49 group. They drove home as a trio with Putnam and Hixson gradually pulling away as Hixson took 2nd by 2 seconds from Blaich! Burdett was just off the podium in 4th in 35:29, with Cakouros in 5th 27 seconds back.
Kent Lemme 33:50     Mark Hixson 34:22     Kristian Blaich 34:24

Marisa Sutera Strange may struggle to stay on the Overall podium but she has no problem retaining her dominance in the Age Division. Simonaitis started out by her side and stayed there as long as she could. But eventually the time came, Strange surged to try to catch the Overall leaders, and Simonaitis had to let her go. Strange did not quite catch the leaders but she won the division handily in 38:54. Simonaitis ran strong all the way to the tape, claiming 2nd in 39:48.
Michelle Simonaitis takes 2nd in the 50-54 Division while finishing 7th Overall at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

Two Massachusetts rivals, Mimi Fallon of the HFC Striders and Holly Madden of Whirlaway got locked in a duel. But Madden pulled away taking 3rd, fifteen seconds ahead of Fallon, in 4th.
Marisa Sutera Strange 38:54     Michelle Simonaitis 39:48     Holly Madden 40:36

55-59 No one has been able to stay with Nat Larson since he moved into this group last fall. Mark Reeder, like Burdett, has been on the comeback trail from injury. In 2016 he won the division here in 34:55 but was two minutes slower the next year. His 55:12 in the Tune-Up 15K earlier this spring suggests he is still not all of the way back, but that a 36 minute run might not be a stretch. John Sullivan of HFC, finished 2nd here last year in 36:54, nine seconds ahead of Reeder, and James Zoldy was just 7 seconds behind Reeder. Larson started out toward the back of the main lead pack, but moved up, eventually finishing 4th overall and winning this division by more than two minutes. Reeder ran even better than expected, clocking 35:45, to take 2nd with more than a minute margin.
Mark Reeder finishes 2nd in the 55-59 Age Division at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championships

Sullivan ran a remarkably consistent race, finishing with exactly the same time as last year to take the final podium spot. Zoldy finished in 5th, a half minute back from Sullivan and was just nipped by Steven Blostein who claimed 4th by 3 seconds.
Nat Larson 33:24     Mark Reeder 35:45     John Sullivan 36:54

Lorraine Jasper who finished 3rd here last year in 42:39, was the only one of the top 5 to return. Her teammate, Mary Swan, has been running well lately and her 33:49 at the 8K Championships suggested she too might break 43 on Sunday. Another athlete likely to be in that same range was Willow Street’s Beth Stalker who ran 1:04:36 at the Stockade-a-thon 15K last fall. No one else in the field had recent times suggesting they could carry a sub-7 minute pace. Swan and Jasper went off at the head of the division field, side by side. But pretty soon it was clear that this would be Swan’s day as Jasper fell back and focused on trying to hang onto a podium spot. Swan captured 1st in 42:37 with a margin of nearly a minute.
Mary Swan captures her first 55-59 Division title of the year at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

Stalker passed Jasper and had a gap of more than 45 seconds by the end. But Jasper hung in there for her Athena team and nailed third place for herself as well. She was able to hold off Michele Keane of the Atlanta Track Club and Liberty’s Victoria Bok, who took 4th and 5th.
Mary Swan 42:37     Beth Stalker 43:35     Lorraine Jasper 44:23

60-64 Once Brian Pilcher scratched due to a recurring hamstring issue, it appeared it would be clear sailing for Atlanta’s Ken Youngers; he took the 8K championship in mid-March with a 28:45. He might well break 36 if he could run as strong here at Dedham. Greater Lowell’s John Barbour ran 37:42 in 2017 but he has been rehabbing an injury since December and was not likely to run within two minutes of that time. The one other contender who might have a chance seemed to be local runner, Charlie Muse, of the Cambridge RC. His 18:15 in the BAA 5K suggests a 37:30 would be within Muse’s reach. Reno Stirrat of Shore AC ran 39:04 last year and one cannot ignore his potential to land on the podium; he is a battler. And Norm Larson’s 59:53 in the Boston Tune-Up 15K puts him in Stirrat’s neighborhood.

When the horn went off Youngers surged to the front of the division field. By the time they reached the Estate grounds, he already had 15 meters on Stirrat and twenty on Larson of the Green Mountain AA. Youngers led throughout the race until the final 600 meters or so when Muse came past. Youngers answered Muse with a kick of his own which brought him back into first. But Muse was not done; he had one final surge left that carried him away from Youngers for the win in 37:54 and a final margin of 6 seconds.
Charlie Muse wins the 60-64 title at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championships

No one is a machine and perhaps this was just not Youngers’s day. Unlike Muse, Larson was never able to bridge the gap, finishing 19 seconds behind Youngers in 3rd. Martin Lascelles of the Boulder RR, was able to push past Stirrat and claim 4th in 39:39 with a 13 second gap back to Stirrat.
Charlie Muse 37:54     Ken Youngers 38:00     Norm Larson 38:19

Atlanta’s Patrice Combs ran 20:39 in the 5K National Championship at Syracuse last October, suggesting a sub 44 was well within her scope. Claire McManus of the Greater Boston TC had a 5-mile time that suggested a sub-48 was within her reach, but there was no evidence that anyone else was poised to break 48 minutes. It appeared that Team Red Lizard’s Joanna Harper, Liberty’s Alda Cossi and Atlanta’s Cynthia Williams would be fighting for the final spot on the podium. Would Williams be resilient enough to bounce back from her fractured elbow in Virginia Beach? Combs had no trouble once the horn sounded, racing to a 3-minute victory in 43:13.
Patrice Combs wins the 60-64 Age Division Championship at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

McManus, in the same way, ran a fine race, establishing herself early and finishing 2nd in 46:52. Cossi ran almost as fast as last year, capturing 3rd in 48:47. Williams lost some training time no doubt but demonstrated her resilience once again as she finished just off the podium in 4th.
Patrice Combs 43:13     Claire McManus 46:52     Alda Cossi 48:47

65-69 Tom Bernhard has dominated this category since he entered it in mid-2016. His high point, so far, came when he captured the division 5K American Record in Syracuse in October of that year. Even though he was not quite as dominant in 2017 as in 2016, he won every national championship race he entered. And this year he came in a minute and a half ahead of everyone who competed at the 8K Championship in Virginia Beach and was entered in this race. No one expected that to change in this race and everyone was right. Bernhard got out strong at the start and pulled steadily away for the win.
Tom Bernhard successfully defends his 65-69 10K title and finishes 4th in Age Grading as well at the 2018 USATF 10K Masters Championships

Chuck Smead and Doug Bell of the Boulder Roar Runners were focused more on their team competition than trying to stay with Bernhard. At their last race in Virginia Beach, Bell finished 18 seconds ahead of Smead but on Sunday Smead reversed the tables, coming in almost a minute ahead of Bell who lost time in the final mile when his back tightened up. Atlanta’s Kirk Larson was 13 seconds back in 4th.
Tom Bernhard 38:14     Chuck Smead 40:08     Doug Bell 41:02

Team Red Lizard’s duo, Suzanne Ray and Jeanette Groesz had taken 1-2 at the 8K Championship and were looking to sweep the top 2 spots again. But they would need to get past Whirlaway’s Karen Durante. Her 1:12 in the Boston Tune-Up 15K and her 1:41 New Bedford Half Marathon put her right in their midst in terms of projected 10K times. As it turned out, Durante ran even better than those times suggested, as she sped across the finish line in 46:37 with a minute and a half on Groesz, as Ray had an off day, finishing another half minute back in 3rd.
Karen Durante takes the 65-69 title while capturing 3rd in Age Grading at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

Karen Durante 46:37     Jeanette Groesz 48:05     Suzanne Ray 48:45

70-74 As noted in the Records section above, this division was a showcase for the two new ‘kids’ in the division, the double-D’s, Dixon and Dykes. Dixon ran 39:45 last year right before his 70th birthday. He ran an 18:50 5K right after so he was at the top of his game then. I surmise some kind of injury issue popped up because by mid-June he ran a 10K in 40:46 and then a 5 miler in 33:30--excellent times for most 70-year olds, but not by Dixon's standards. In March of this year, his times were n better but he must have been on an upward swing, getting good training in but still recovering fitness. I heard he ran a 19:30 5K in mid-April; that shows his trajectory was good. Dykes, on the other hand, was running out of this world. Just before his 70th birthday he ran 30:54 at the 8K Championship; that is age-grade equivalent to a 38:59. Not only that, he went to Rotterdam and lowered the 70-74 American Record for the Marathon with a 2:57:43 on April 8th and 8 days later ran a 3:16:20 in the near gale conditions at the Boston Marathon, winning his age division by nearly half a minute. If he could come back from those efforts and run an American 70-74 10K Record time, it would be barely believable.
Bill Dixon [#42] breaks the American 70-74 10K Record and finishes 2nd in the Age Division while capturing 3rd place in Overall Age-Grading

In any case, Dixon led them through the first 2 and a half miles and then Dykes took over. Dixon had no answer to the surge that Dykes put on, but he continued at record pace. They both broke the American Record, Dixon by over a half minute and Dykes by over a minute, in 39:02 (39:04 gun time but net time is used for Masters records)! It was 4 minutes before the rest of the field showed up. Dave Glass showed again that he is the best of the rest, as he nailed third with a 43:50. A minute later Boulder’s Ray Eck came across the line in 4th, followed closely by Gordon McFarland and Jim May.
Gene Dykes 39:04     Bill Dixon 39:43     Dave Glass 43:50

Even though she is recovering from some nagging injuries, Jan Holmquist, the American 70-74 10K record holder and the 2013-2017 Age Division Road Runner of the Year, still dominates this division. She ran two minutes faster in 2017, but her 50:29 this year saw her come across the finish line more than two minutes ahead of Elizabeth Gonnerman who, in turn had a four-minute margin on the third place finisher, Diane McLaughlin.
Jan Holmquist 50:29     Elizabeth Gonnerman 53:00     Diane McLaughlin 57:29

75-79 Doug Goodhue, despite battling leg injuries, was the 2017 Runner of the Year in this division. He continues the rehab and recovery process and that relegated him to 2nd place at the 8K Championship. Robert Hendrick, who won in Virginia Beach, expressed confidence that Goodhue would come back to the front of the group soon; it was just a question of when. Goodhue felt he was still a couple of months away from being able to compete with Hendrick, who also won the 75-79 division at the USATF Cross Country Championships. But anyone can have an off day and this was Hendrick’s. Goodhue, as usual, threw caution to the winds and took it out hard, with Hendrick struggling to keep up. Goodhue’s ailments did catch up with him momentarily, late in the race, as he had to stop and walk for a bit. But then he was able to resume and finish off his race, winning in 46:55.
Hall of Famer and Multiple Year winner of the Division Road Runner of the Year, Doug Goodhue, captures his first Age Division title of 2018

Hendrick struggled as well over the last uphill mile but came home second nearly two minutes back. David Pember of the New England 65 Plus RC, took the final podium spot 5 minutes later, with a 5 minute gap back to the the rest of the field.
Doug Goodhue 46:55     Robert Hendrick 48:36     David Pember 53:29

Hartford, Connecticut’s Kathleen Scotti took the Women’s title in this division unopposed, as she did last year.   
Kathleen Scotti 1:25:54

80-84 The annual battle for 10K supremacy among two long-time rivals, Harry Carter of the BAA and Bill Riley of the New England 65 Plus RC, was the featured event. Riley took the 2017 honors by 10 seconds in 53:04. Would Carter be able to prevail this year? The answer was no, and, in fact, there was a greater margin this year as Riley came close to matching his 2017 time with a 53:13, but Carter was almost a minute back. Both are clearly way ahead of the pack however, finishing almost 20 minutes before the rest of the field. Joe Cordero took 3rd, 5 minutes ahead of Lawrence Cole and Jerry Levasseur.
Bill Riley 53:13     Harry Carter 54:05     Joe Cordero 1:13:40

85-89 Anny Stockman took this title unopposed and, as noted in the Records section, smashed the current pending record by over 15 minutes with her 1:24:50 (1:24:58 gun time but net time is used for Masters records)!
Anny Stockman 1:24:58


40 and Up Heather Webster led the defending champion Genesee Valley Harriers (GVH) to the 40+ team victory supported by Melissa Senall and Caroline Bucci, who bunched up nicely, finishing within 24 seconds of one another. Their average time was 43:28. The Western Mass Distance Project took 2nd with a 44:38 thanks to Ashley Krause, Vanessa Diana, and Karin George.
Heather Webster, first runner in for GVH's victorious 40+ team

Their ‘insurance’ 4th runner, Susan Scott, was only 15 seconds behind George. Alda Cossi stepped down from her 60-64 group to help out the youngsters, Kathleen Goodberlet and Jennifer Stewart, as Liberty AC captured the final podium spot with a 46:23 average. The Greater Lowell RR finished 4th.
GVH 2:10:23     Western Mass Distance Project 2:13:54     Liberty AC 2:19:09

Last year it was the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.), the Atlanta Track Club and Whirlaway finishing 1-2-3 when the Central Mass Striders (CMS) missed out on the podium on a tie-breaker. CMS wanted to be sure that could not happen again! With a couple of new recruits, Patrick Rich and Michael Quintal, and the sole returning runner, Greg Putnam, CMS was not only able to make the podium outright but to come away the winner!
Greg Putnam gives his all to finish #2 for the winning 40+ Central Mass Striders

Their average time of 33:55 was almost a minute faster this year. That gave them the edge over the B.A.A., whose team, consisting of David Bedoya, Matthew Herman, and Ryan McCalmon, clocked an average of 34:14 for 2nd and the Garden State Track Club-New Balance, with Sam Teigen, Jonathan Frieder and Aaron Cooper netting an average of 34:23. Atlanta finished just off the podium.
Central Mass Striders 1:41:44     B.A.A. 1:42:41     Garden State 1:43:08

50 and Up The Athena Track Club has dominated this division, winning the Women’s 50+ Masters Club Grand Prix every year since its inception in 2012. They won the first 2018 road race team competition in the 8K Championship in March, and seemed primed to do it again. Marisa Sutera Strange led the way as usual but last month her prime support was Doreen McCoubrie; this month it was Mary Swan finishing ahead of all the other #2 runners. Lorraine Jasper closed the deal allowing Athena to take the win with a team average of 41:58.
Lorraine Jasper closes off the scoring for the victorious 50+ Athena squad at the 10K Masters National Championship

The Willow Street AC finished 2nd with a 43:04 average for Emily Bryans, Anne Benson and Beth Stalker. Atlanta’s Laurie Wharton, Michele Keane and Kris Huff claimed third with a 44:30 average, holding off Whirlaway and the HFC Striders who finished 4th and 5th.
Athena TC 2:05:54     Willow Street AC 2:09:10     Atlanta TC 2:13:29

Although their streak is not as long, the Greater Springfield Harriers (GSH)have owned this division as much as Athena has for the Women for the last year and a half. GSH was so confident going in that they split their crew to make a ‘B’ team.They had no trouble defending their team championship and taking their third title in three tries this year as Nat Larson, Kent Lemme and Mark Hixson got the job done with no insurance, finishing with a 33:52 average.  No other team cracked 37 as an average! If there had been an Overall Team Championship, GSH would have won it!
Mark Hixson closes out the 50+ win for the Greater Springfield Harriers

The Genesee Valley Harriers (GVH), with Mike Nier back leading the way ahead of Dale Flanders and Theodor Schnaufer clocked a 37:05 average to make sure that GSH A and B did not sweep the top 2 spots. The GSH B team came through in 3rd with Francis Burdett leading the way, ably supported by Alejandro Heuck and Doug Guertin, averaging 41:48. The Greater Lowell Road Runners were in 4th.
GSH 1:41:34     GVH 1:51:15     GSH-B 1:55:30

60 and Up The Atlanta Track Club and Genesee Valley Harriers (GVH) finished 1-2 last year but faced a new challenger this year as Team Red Lizard from Oregon may have their sights on a Masters Club Grand Prix victory this year. They took the title at the 8K Championships and were entered here too, the first two times they have made these cross country trips. But Atlanta tipped the balance when they convinced Patrice Combs to make the trip to Dedham. Combs led the way, as noted in the 60-64 age division recap. That allowed the team, with Cynthia Williams and Cindy Lucking finishing as #2 and 3 scorers, to attain an average of 47:40. That gave Atlanta a comfortable edge over the Red Lizards who had to settle for 2nd. Jeanette Groesz, Suzanne Ray, and Joanna Harper averaged 49:27. GVH took 3rd thanks to Sharon Moore, Cheryl Guth, and Cindy Ingalls averaging 52:23.
Atlanta TC 2:22:58     Team Red Lizard 2:28:19     GVH 2:37:08

Last year the Atlanta TC did not even field a 60+ team for this race and this year they entered as the favorites, slim favorites perhaps but favorites nonetheless. With team wins in the Cross Country Championships in Tallahassee and the 8K in Virginia Beach, adding a 10K win would be a giant step toward taking the 2018 Club Grand Prix title. Ken Youngers got Atlanta an early lead and a cushion, but maybe not quite as big a cushion as they had expected. As noted above, Youngers had an off day. Still, with a 38:00, he had over a minute and a half on the #1 runner for every other team. That is still a nice cushion to work with.
Ken Youngers, first finisher for the 60+ Atlanta TC and first finisher in the 60-64 team contest

Martin Lascelles came in for the Boulder Road Runners at 39:39. When George Braun arrived at 40:01 and Chuck Smead at 40:08, they gave Boulder three runners in before Atlanta’s 2nd scoring runner, Phil Richey, who was, admittedly, only 14 seconds back from Smead. Their 3rd runner, Mike Anderson, finished just 21 seconds later, giving Atlanta a 39:42 average. That was 14 seconds per runner ahead of Boulder, giving Atlanta 1st and Boulder 2nd. Last year the Lowell RR benefitted from John Barbour being at his best, cracking 38 minutes. So even though Bill Dixon and Ken Goodin were a little off their best, Lowell still took 2nd in 2017. This year Dixon and Goodin were back on their game, but Barbour is in the midst of rehab. So they were a pretty tight threesome instead of having one up front guy with two in supporting roles. Dixon, stepping down from the 70-74 division, had such a good day that he actually had the best time of the three. As a result they averaged 40:22 and took 3rd away from the GVH squad that had an average of 40:35, a mere 4 seconds per runner ahead of Shore AC, in 5th. Boulder is the Club Grand Prix defending champion but injury is sidelining some of their key runners and some are competing while off their best. They look forward to providing more stringent competition in the second half of the year. If so, the Club Grand Prix contest may well be settled in Tulsa at the 15K, the final race of the 2018 season.
Atlanta TC 1:59:05     Boulder RR 1:59:48     Lowell RR 2:01:06

70 and Up GVH entered as the favorites given their victories at the previous two championships, the Cross Country at Tallahassee and the 8K at Virginia Beach. Even though one of their top 2, Tony Gingello, was a little off his best, Jim May ran his usual strong race as #1 and Liam Finnegan and Keith Yeates provided solid backup runs.
Jim May, top runner for the victorious GVH 70+ squad at the 2018 National Masters 10K Championship

They won again with a 46:41 average. Dave Glass had an excellent run for the Atlanta TC giving them a 3 minute cushion to work with. The Ann Arbor TC had no one to match up with Glass on this day. Both Doug Goodhue and Paul Carlin (your author) are rehabbing leg injuries; at Virginia Beach, I had a better day but at Dedham I tweaked my hamstring a week before the race, and Goodhue had the stronger race. In any case, Goodhue finished about 3 minutes behind Glass, and I was another minute and a half back from Goodhue. When Curtis Walker and Sam Benedict came in just behind me and well ahead of our Marathoner turned 10K guy, David Cohen, that sealed the deal for Atlanta. Their 47:29 was well ahead of Ann Arbor’s 49:32. The New England 65 Plus Runners Club finished 4th.
GVH 2:20:02     Atlanta TC 2:22:25     Ann Arbor TC 2:28:34

*No Women’s Teams competed in the 70+ division.

American Records falling and great Individual and Team competition among the fastest Masters Long Distance Runners in the country! What more could you ask for?! It was another great 10K outing, hosted by the James Joyce Ramble.

Next up on the Masters Grand Prix circuit is the USATF Masters Half Marathon Championship at Ann Arbor MI on June 3rd. If you like the distance, and especially if you are from the Midwest, don’t miss your chance. From 2009-2014 they HM Championships were in Florida and from 2015-2017 they were in Southern California. Who knows where they will be in 2019?

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