Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Dancing in the Dark

As I scrolled through the race results from the weekend, one of my first thoughts was man, what a great weekend it would have been to cherry pick a win.  There were some seriously slow races (Run With the Horses 10k, Notre Dame Prep 5k) and some races that any of our girls could have stormed (Chestertown Half winner was 1:42, money race Hidden Treasures Half top 3 within a minute in the 1:33 range).  Then, as my phone returned to service and a flurry of text messages and emails popped up in my inbox, I found out that a number of other races were really poorly organized. 

Pete Mulligan finished 3rd at the Caribbean Sounds 10 Miler in the Harbor, and remarked that it made the Figgy Pudding 5k look like an "organized event."  With 3 races (5k, 10k, 10mi) just running out and back through the Harbor, all three distances were short.  But at least he got to eat some great jerk chicken afterwards. 

Jon Miller, Meg McNew and Christa Wagner all competed at the 3/10-too-long Great Prostate Cancer Challenge 5k in Towson.  I mistakenly listed Meg and Christa at 3rd and 5th, respectively, but I didn't realize that some name that looked weird was a girl, so they were actually 4th and 6th.  For Christa, it was just her 2nd race this year and first since Club Challenge.  A long road back from injury, and a great result!  Apparently this 2000 person race had no food or water after and was just a complete Clusterf***.

At the aforementioned half marathons, Chris Benassi took 2nd at Chestertown in 1:20:39, while Brennan Feldhausen finished 3rd at Hidden Treasures in Salisbury with a 1:17:36, picking up $200 for his effort. 

Two other results originally omitted in my email were Julia Webb's 1st Female/3rd overall 23:27 at the Virginia 4 Miler, and Dan Miranda's 2nd place in the Naylor's Beach Duathlon, with the fastest Run1 and Run2 of the day. 

I don't have results for the Bull Run Reunion Run, but I do know that Tristram Thomas picked up a well-deserved W in 16:55 - a great time on that course, and a minute faster than he ran there last year.  Erik Westlund also competed. 

At the Great Pittsburgh 10k, Terence Baptiste had one of the best races of the year.  He ran 34:58 for 30th place in this stacked field, and as far as I can tell it's a 90sec+ smashing of his previous 10k best.  I know he ran in the 36:30 range at both Pike's Peek and the infinitely slower Race For Our Kids (I thought he may have gotten into the 35 range somewhere through the years but couldn't find any confirmation).  I talked to T about his race and he said he went out a little more relaxed, as he's been going out too hard recently.  Splitting 17:45 at 5k, he then tore into the course, ripping a negative split 17:13 or so for the back half.  He said the course is pretty similar to Pike's Peek: net downhill but mile 5 is straight up.  Tuesday Tibbs ran well too, running 54:41.

Speaking of Race For Our Kids, that was on Sunday as well.  The course seems to be slightly friendlier these days, as the race was moved from late June to late September, and the route changed slightly.  Last year, Andy Biladeau of UVA came and ripped into the course, running the fastest 10k at RFOK (although it was the new course).  Dave Berdan slotted into 2nd then, but this year was back with a vengeance, and great form following last weekend's PDR.  Dave has had some great performances at this race over the years, winning in 2008 and finishing 2nd twice, but this year was great.  Dave's winning time was 30:58 - the fastest he's run here by quite a bit.  Alex Battaglino hasn't raced in some time, but has been putting in monster volume as he prepares for the BAA Boston Half.  He ran 32:19 in his runner-up finish.  Elijah Kosgei has been 40 for at least 3 years.  I don't understand it, or why he keeps writing down that he is 40, but c'mon Peter Pan - we all have to grow up at some point.  Face facts: the reaper is near.  But, he didn't let that stop him from running 35:22 for 4th.  Dave Berardi has been hampered by some hamstring issues again, but avoided getting girled by Diane, finishing 8th in 38:59.  Diane Heiser has never run a 10k before (at least not while she's been here that I can find) so her 39:25 established a personal best for the distance.  It was also more than good enough for the win, over Megan DiGregorio, who finished 2nd in 40:19.  Meg D has run 3 10k's this year and has been within 6 seconds of that time, each time.  Suzanne Hurst completed the Falls Road clean sweep, running 41:05.  Cynthia Evans also ran, finishing in 50:29. 

I would be remiss to not mention our brave Ragnar Relay folks: Dustin Meeker, Liz Lawton and Melissa Majumdar.  Dusty's team did great battle with Liz, and came from behind to outpace them by 10 minutes at the end.  Dusty's team was 2nd overall, Liz's was 3rd (1st in the mixed division).  Melissa was on the lone ultra mixed division, which meant just 6 team members instead of 12.  All I have heard was just how difficult the legs were from Dusty and Liz, that running up South Mountain (in Boonsboro) at 3am was terrible, and how wrecked they were from the effort. 

Our Purple Drink Athlete of the Week went to Terence, for his terrific PR and great finish at Pittsburgh!

We'll be at the track tonight, 6:30pm, let's try and make sure we're starting by 7.  Another fairly long workout for the marathon folks, who I think are going to do 6x1600 somewhere between tempo and marathon pace, with 200m jog rolling recovery.  For those who are winding down or focusing on shorter events, we'll do a simple workout:  4x800, 4x400, 4x200, getting faster on the way down.  90sec in between the 8s, 60sec after the 4s and 200m jog in between the 200s. 

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