By Steve Nearman
April 29, 2012
For the Washington Running Report
The Kenyans came from Chapel Hill, NC and from Royersford, PA. The Ethiopians came from the Bronx and Washington, DC. They all came in pursuit of a $1,000 first prize, not bad for running a 10-kilometer race not far from their home bases.
Credit the Kenyans from Ben Kurgat’s Chapel Hill camp with sweeping the overall win, but the Ethiopians sure showed depth at the 17th Kaiser Permanente Pike’s Peek 10K today in Rockville.
But the biggest winner of the morning goes to the weather. Some 1,307 men and 1,445 women who finished the downhill trek from the Shady Grove Metro to White Flint Mall down the usually car-congested Rockville Pike were treated with perfect weather – bright sun, 50s warming into the 60s, and a slight tailwind.
“It was nice weather, not as hot as last year,” said Kristin Rapp, who enjoyed a personal best 53:39 after running here in 2009 and 2011.
The elites made the best of the weather as well. Although the tailwind was not quite as strong as it was last year – producing seven of the nine fastest men’s times and six of the nine fastest women’s time in race history – the elite man still rewrote a bit of the record books today.
Julius Kogo successfully defended his 2011 title, falling just six seconds short of last year’s time in 28:12. His 28:06 is the event record, so now he owns the No. 1 and 2 fastest times. But he might have broken his record today had there not been slick pavement from overnight rain. Finishing shortly after Kogo was training mate Hellen Jemutai, who moved up from sixth last year to capture the victory in 32:54, the exact same time as last year and etching her name twice in the top 10 times ever.
Both earned $1,000 and a plaque for winning the Road Runners Club of America Eastern Regional 10K Championships.
The manner in which Kogo and Jemutai achieved their victories could not have been more different.
After the start was delayed about 10 minutes due to a fender-bender on Rockville Pike, Kogo, bearing bib #1, vaulted from the start with fellow Kenyans and the Ethiopians in pursuit. In fact, 12 East Africans were in the lead pack by one mile, swiftly passed in 4:35.
The pack, with its frequent lead exchanges, began to disintegrate to six members as they tackled a short uphill approaching the third mile marker and just four as they crossed the halfway point in 14:10. By the end of the fourth mile, Kogo and Ethiopians Abiyot Endale and Zenbaba Yigeze finally dropped another Ethiopian Fikadu Lemma, who would eventually finish sixth.
Then Kogo began to execute his plan.
“I felt good and I just started picking it up from four miles,” said Kogo, 26, who also was runner-up in 2010. “Then just approaching six miles, I picked it up again.”
Kogo gapped Endale and Yigeze by 10 meters through five miles and slowly was pulling away until Endale made a last-ditch effort to catch Kogo before the last steep downhill to the finish. Kogo was too fast.
“I know Kogo,” said Endale, who was training at altitude in Ethiopia for three months until arriving back in the Bronx last week. “He’s a very good runner. I’ve never been this close to him before. Around 4 ½ miles, I was pushing the pace. I made a mistake by pushing too early.”
Endale bettered his third-place finish last year but one spot in 28:16 for $750 and training mate Yigeze was third in 28:20 for $650. Endale’s time was the fourth-fastest ever here and Yigeze earned the #6 clocking all time.
Jemutai (in photo) left no doubt very early whose name was going in the $1,000 check. She bolted from the started and took a large lead by the end of first mile, hitting 5K in 16:16 and winning by 56 seconds. With no women to push her, she was ably paced by training mate Nicholas Kurgat, who was second last year but coming back from an Achilles injury.
Third-placer Tezeta Dengersa, a Washington-based Ethiopian, said it best about Jemutai’s fast start. “She said ‘OK, goodbye, thank you’!” mused Dengersa, a 31-year-old Turkish citizen born in Ethiopia.
Jemutai enjoyed the win but fell short of her goal. “I wanted to run 32 minutes today,” said the 30 year old from Kapsabet, Kenya. “I realized at mile four that I was starting to slow down. I felt like I needed more water.”
Yihunish Delelecha, a 30-year-old Washington-based Ethiopian, was second in 33:50 and Dengersa was eight ticks behind her. Elena Orlova, a 42-year-old Russian training in nearby Gaithersburg, was top master and sixth overall in an impressive 34:26.
Top male master was 41-year-old Chris Juarez of Alexandria, the 2002 Marine Corps Marathon champ, 14th overall in 30:46. Jack McMahon of Silver Spring was the second oldest finisher, at 81, running 56:58 and beating 422 younger men to the finish.
After the race in the White Flint Mall parking lot, runners did their share of sun-bathing, chatting with friends and family, and eating healthy foods such as Dunkin’ Donuts, Chinese fried rice, pizza, and Popeyes fried chicken.
Sean Dixon, 45, from Waldorf, MD, took some time to relax after the race.
“I’m glad I’m here,” said Dixon, newly retired from the Marines and Coast Guard but now working in Human Resources at the Office of Homeland Security while going to the University of Maryland Baltimore County for his degree in information systems management.
No wonder he does not have the time to train as he used to.
“This was my third Pike’s Peek 10K, but I’m nowhere near race shape,” said Dixon, whose wife Kristy stayed home with their three children Israel (15), Simone (13), and Ashley (12) so he could enjoy the morning. “I ran a pretty even race (51:26) but I’ve run faster here, 44 minutes in 2007, 46 minutes in 2010. My allergies, the pollen, have made me fatigued, under the weather. Threw my training out the window.” He said he does hope to participate in a sprint or Olympic triathlon this year.
Mark Malander also said he was not near race shape. He ran a stellar 33:05 here six years ago but has been hampered for the past year by an Achilles injury. However, the fiercely competitive Malander was happy to be able to run.
“Last year, I was injured and I was the driver for the elite athletes,” said the 54-year-old Malander of Herndon, a geologist for 30 years for Exxon Mobil. “This is the slowest I’ve run on this course (36:24). It’s frustrating to get clobbered by all those 50-year-old guys.” He said his training now turns to the New York City Marathon this fall.
Kristin Rapp, on the other hand, said she was in better shape than last year. Training for the Boston Marathon two weeks ago certainly helped, she said. And Pike’s Peek was the longest run she has had since the rather-toasty Patriots’ Day marathon in Beantown.
“I wasn’t trying to run a fast time,” said the 34-year Rapp, who lives in nearby Kensington and works close to the finish as an accountant at CAS. “I just wanted to get back out there after Boston.”
Open & Masters By Gun Time, Age Groups By Net Time No Duplicate Prizes MALE OPEN Gun Time 1 1 Julius Kogo 26 Chapel Hill NC 28:12# 1000 2 3 Abiyot Endale 25 Bronx NY 28:16# 750 3 76 Zenbaba Yigeze 29 Bronx NY 28:20# 650 4 25 Tariku Bokan 30 Herndon VA 28:48# 600 5 7 Kitema Nigusse 31 Bronx NY 28:49# 550 6 12 Fikadu Lemma 28 Bronx NY 28:54# 500 7 24 Birhanu Alemu Feyissa 30 Silver Spring MD 28:55# 450 8 4 Deresse Deniboba 29 Bronx NY 28:56# 400 9 15 John Itati 38 Royersford PA 29:00# 350 10 14 Kennedy Kemei 33 Chapel Hill NC 29:21# 300 # Under USATF OPEN guideline FEMALE OPEN Gun Time 1 18 Hellen Jemutai 30 Chapel Hill NC 32:54# 1000 2 3216 Yihunish Deleiecha 30 Washington DC 33:50 750 3 19 Tezeta Dengersa 31 Washington DC 33:58 650 4 20 Tiringo Shiferaw 27 Washington DC 34:18 600 5 16 Gladys Asiba 34 Royersford PA 34:26 550 6 40 Elena Orlova 42 Gaithersburg MD 34:26* 500 7 22 Christine Ramsey 29 Baltimore MD 34:53 450 8 72 Lisa Thomas 36 Alexandria VA 35:48* 400 9 46 Laura O'Hara 32 Alexandria VA 35:54 350 10 37 Lindsay Donaldson 26 Washington DC 35:57 300 # Under USATF OPEN guideline * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE MASTERS Gun Time 1 1005 Chris Juarez 41 Alexandria VA 30:46* 250 2 2778 Douglas Woods 43 Gaithersburg MD 34:19 200 3 68 John Piggott 46 Williamsburg VA 34:40* 150 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE MASTERS Gun Time 1 45 Alisa Harvey 45 Manassas VA 37:35* 250 2 43 Denise Knickman 43 Baltimore MD 39:30 200 3 2863 Darcy Strouse 48 Frederick MD 39:34 150 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE GRANDMASTER Gun Time 1 50 Mark Neff 50 Derwood MD 35:00* 2 51 Greg Cauller 52 York PA 35:07* 3 65 Stephen Chantry 57 Williamsburg VA 35:26* * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE GRANDMASTER Gun Time 1 71 Cindy Conant 51 Kensington MD 39:47* 2 932 Win Persina 52 Washington DC 41:34 3 53 Alison Suckling 56 Arnold MD 41:39* * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE SR-GRANDMASTER Gun Time 1 60 Roland Rust 60 Bethesda MD 38:07* 2 66 Rick Platt 61 Williamsburg VA 39:02* 3 1083 Timothy Morgan 61 Damascus MD 39:36* * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE SR-GRANDMASTER Gun Time 1 301 Alice Franks 63 Rockville MD 46:39* 2 1472 Ann Rosenthal 62 Bethesda MD 50:32 3 2520 Joann Szczepkowski 66 Rehoboth Beach DE 51:41 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 15 - 19 Net Time 1 3041 Stephen Alexander 15 Gaithersburg MD 36:05 75 2 715 Andrew Lu 18 Rockville MD 41:08 50 3 3291 Nicholas Miller 16 Arnold MD 43:16 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 15 - 19 Net Time 1 291 Abby Peterson 15 Rockville MD 46:08 75 2 683 Mary Marg Sheridan 18 Chevy Chase MD 46:18 50 3 649 Nina Geleta 16 Manassas VA 46:18 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 20 - 24 Net Time 1 2898 Gregory Decker 23 Rockville MD 35:04 75 2 2982 Kyle Grimm 24 Frederick MD 36:49 50 3 2550 Kevin Hom 24 Arlington VA 41:02 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 20 - 24 Net Time 1 57 Kelsey Budd 22 Oakton VA 37:17 75 2 2675 Elizabeth Laseter 23 Washington DC 37:44 50 3 44 Jillian Pollack 23 Arlington VA 37:59 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 25 - 29 Net Time 1 74 Eric Chirchir 28 Jackson Heights NY 29:38# 75 2 6 Worku Beyi 25 Bronx NY 29:41# 50 3 26 Karl Dusen 29 Rockville MD 30:05 25 # Under USATF OPEN guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 25 - 29 Net Time 1 36 Susan Hendrick 26 Washington DC 36:23 75 2 35 Lauren Woodall 26 Washington DC 37:28 50 3 3052 Lindsay Larose 29 Arlington VA 39:39 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 30 - 34 Net Time 1 77 Seife Geletu 30 Washington DC 31:22 75 2 30 Jake Klim 31 North Bethesda MD 31:32 50 3 64 Dickson Mercer 30 Washington DC 32:31 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 30 - 34 Net Time 1 39 Elizabeth Young 32 Washington DC 36:11 75 2 249 Robin Wrightson 32 Washington DC 38:07 50 3 101 Kristin Andrews 30 Chevy Chase MD 38:21 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 35 - 39 Net Time 1 33 David Wertz 36 Arlington VA 31:58* 75 2 347 Philippe Rolly 39 McLean VA 32:19* 50 3 1072 Edi Turco 39 Arlington VA 33:14 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 35 - 39 Net Time 1 1615 Mary Davison 39 Bristow VA 38:41 75 2 1014 Cristina Burbach 37 Washington DC 39:16 50 3 1708 Lisa Reichmann 38 Gaithersburg MD 39:33 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 40 - 44 Net Time 1 2545 Joerg Schroeder 44 Rockville MD 36:10 75 2 559 Kris Simms 40 Baltimore MD 36:14 50 3 3002 Scott Koonce 40 Gaithersburg MD 36:20 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 40 - 44 Net Time 1 876 Amanda Turner 40 Gettysburg PA 40:47 75 2 991 Sarah Johnson 41 Bethesda MD 42:10 50 3 1024 Janice Lunenfeld 42 Rockville MD 42:25 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 45 - 49 Net Time 1 2891 Frank Perna 49 Bethesda MD 35:01* 75 2 556 Jim Nielsen 46 Broadlands VA 35:35 50 3 67 Greg Dawson 46 Williamsburg VA 35:48 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 45 - 49 Net Time 1 624 Sandra Griffin 45 Upper Marlboro MD 44:53 75 2 3078 Laura Gurney 47 Bethesda MD 45:02 50 3 2848 Janet Braunstein 45 Washington DC 45:54 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 50 - 54 Net Time 1 50 Mark Neff 50 Derwood MD 34:59* 75 2 51 Greg Cauller 52 York PA 35:06* 50 3 1009 Jean-Chri Arcaz 51 Rockville MD 35:46* 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 50 - 54 Net Time 1 71 Cindy Conant 51 Kensington MD 39:44* 75 2 932 Win Persina 52 Washington DC 41:31 50 3 1553 Janeth Scott 50 Columbia MD 41:55 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 55 - 59 Net Time 1 65 Stephen Chantry 57 Williamsburg VA 35:25* 75 2 2714 James Cooper 56 Potomac MD 35:50* 50 3 56 Dan Lawson 56 Gaithersburg MD 36:32* 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 55 - 59 Net Time 1 53 Alison Suckling 56 Arnold MD 41:36* 75 2 3072 Debbie Flynn 55 Cross Hill SC 42:37* 50 3 2452 Betty Blank 59 Falls Church VA 44:49 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 60 - 64 Net Time 1 60 Roland Rust 60 Bethesda MD 38:04* 75 2 66 Rick Platt 61 Williamsburg VA 39:00* 50 3 1083 Timothy Morgan 61 Damascus MD 39:33* 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 60 - 64 Net Time 1 301 Alice Franks 63 Rockville MD 46:33* 75 2 1472 Ann Rosenthal 62 Bethesda MD 49:24 50 3 414 Nancy Avitabile 64 Bethesda MD 49:43 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 65 - 69 Net Time 1 1316 Donald Hensel 67 Gaithersburg MD 45:54 75 2 2191 William Rowell 68 Olney MD 46:06 50 3 1259 Walter Brown 68 Montgomery Vill MD 47:13 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 65 - 69 Net Time 1 1042 Chris Craun 66 Bethesda MD 50:26* 75 2 2520 Joann Szczepkowski 66 Rehoboth Beach DE 50:36* 50 3 2957 Gretchen Bolton 66 Bethesda MD 55:50 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 70 - 74 Net Time 1 3150 Gerry Ives 72 Washington DC 47:21 75 2 745 Jack Mangold 70 Chevy Chase MD 55:48 50 3 2860 Nils Borj Tallroth 70 Bethesda MD 59:50 25 FEMALE AGE GROUP: 70 - 74 Net Time 1 578 Linda Carter 70 Potomac MD 66:15 75 2 2432 Betty Smith 71 Rockville MD 68:03 50 3 1443 Jamie Wollard 73 N.Bethesda MD 84:29 25 MALE AGE GROUP: 75 - 79 Net Time 1 2958 Skip Grant 76 Chevy Chase MD 48:43* 75 2 2521 Alan Rider 76 Reston VA 54:28* 50 3 1327 Bob Archibald 79 Fayetteville PA 58:08 25 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 75 - 79 Net Time 1 138 Pat Cuff 75 Montgomery Vill MD 66:42* 75 2 180 Marianne Parakkal 76 Gaithersburg MD 68:55 50 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline MALE AGE GROUP: 80 - 99 Net Time 1 441 Jack McMahon 81 Silver Spring MD 56:58* 75 * Under USATF Age-Group guideline FEMALE AGE GROUP: 80 - 99 Net Time
By Steve Nearman
March 17, 2012
For the Washington Running Report
There was little drama determining the champions of today’s Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Marathon and Half Marathon around the four quadrants of Washington, DC. There was plenty of drama, however, from the thousands of runners whose bodies were not so acclimated to the unseasonably warm temperatures.
Local favorite Michael Wardian of Arlington and George Washington University medical student Meghan Bishop ran dominating races and easily tamed the field of 3,181 starters (3,129 finishers) at the seventh annual race. Wardian, who outruns the field in what seems like at least a marathon or ultra a weekend, covered the 26.2-mile course on autopilot, winning here for the sixth time in seven years in a pedestrian 2:26:35. He earned $1,000.
Wardian opened a big gap early, but had to fight off eventual runner-up Travis Barczak, a 22-year-old Detroit native in his marathon debut. Barczak charged a mile down North Capital Street and drew even with Wardian at 11 miles. But the rookie was no match for the 37-year-old veteran, and six miles later Wardian dismantled Barczak’s hopes for a marathon victory.
“I was smelling blood,” said Barczak, who competes in cross country and is on spring break from Wayne State University this week. “I saw the front guy was relaxed. You’ve got to take advantage of the down hills.”
Wardian was unfazed.
“I started throwing in some 5:17 miles and putting some distance on him,” Wardian recounted. “He was running pretty fast. It was cool. I like to race. And if somebody wants to race, let’s get it on.” Wardian traveled solo from the Southwest Waterfront past Nationals Stadium and all through Anacostia back to the finish.
Barczak slowed considerably over the second half (1:16:41) and ended in 2:28:56. Scott Allen of Washington, DC (2:36:05), Benjamin Emmanuel of Arlington (2:38:24) and Philippe Rolly of McLean (2:41:34) followed.
“I was hoping to run 2:35 but I ended up at 2:41,” said Rolly, who turns 40 this year and is prepping for a successful masters campaign.
Bishop, meanwhile, had no visions of grandeur in her first race over 10 miles. Wearing headphones on a course full of live bands, the 26-year-old from Blue Bell, PA, said she was just happy to be running again after three busy years of medical school, working 80 hours per week to become an orthopedic surgeon.
“I was not expecting to win,” said Bishop, whose last long race was two years ago at the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile. “I was just hoping to go under three hours.” Bishop, who was a top distance runner for the College of William and Mary, came close – 3:01:40 – leading the entire course. She took home a $1,000 check for her sweat.
Immediately upon cross the finish line, she took up residency in the medical tent. “My legs were wobbly near the end,” Bishop admitted. “It is probably from dehydration.”
Bethany Sachtleben, 20, from Manassas, trailed her by nearly 10 minutes in 3:11:25. Silvia Baage of Washington (3:13:50), Noalig Montagnon of New York City (3:15:05) and Patricia Soumoff of Southampton, NY (3:16:13) were next.
Four hours into the marathon, drama began to consume the finish area as many runners collapsed or nearly collapsed. The culprit most likely was the temperature, which was mid-50s with haze at gun time 8:00 a.m. but rose into the 70s and full sun by the afternoon.
“We were ready for everything, heat, cold, you name it,” said Dan Cruz, head of media relations for the Rock ‘n’ Roll series. “There were about five minutes when it looked like a war zone.”
In the accompanying half marathon, which drew 16,477 starters and 16,291 finishers, Ricky Flynn nailed his only goal, which was to win, speeding around 13.1 miles in 1:06:39. Flynn, with a personal best 1:04:15 last fall, said he signed up for the race more as a workout as he transitions from marathon training to track sharpening for this June’s Olympic track and field trials. Flynn placed a surprising 12th in the Olympic Marathon trials in January in a debut 2:12:29.
“I was using it as more of a workout than a race, trying to get back in track shape,” said the Lynchburg, VA, resident who grew up in nearby Damascus, MD. His “workout” banked him $1,000.
Flynn said he traded the lead with Washington-based Ethiopian Gurmessa Mergerssa for the first five to six miles. Once they hit Mile 7, Mergerssa abruptly backed off the pace and Flynn turned it on for the next mile. “I just pushed the pace to make sure he didn’t come back on me,” he explained. Mergerssa fell back more than a minute and posted a 1:07:57 time. Italian Paolo Natali was third in 1:08:07.
Ethiopians Askale Merachi and Tiringo Getachew swept the women’s half in 1:16:52 and 1:20:42 respectively. Local favorite Lisa Thomas of Fairfax was third in 1:22:17.
Just before noon, Janette Ray and her training partner Dexter proudly completed the half marathon. Both received their finisher medal around their neck and their water. Then Dexter rolled over onto the pavement in total content.
Not to worry, Dexter is a 6-year-old white lab who has assisted Janette in four marathons and now her fourth half marathon in the past two years. Dexter is Janette’s right arm, a limb she lost to cancer as a baby.
“He needs exercise and so do I,” said Janette, a Kingstowne, VA, resident who was united with Dexter five years ago after a second surgery on her left arm. “I couldn’t move the arm so he minimizes the load.” Janette said Dexter pulls laundry out of the dryer and carries things on his back, along with walking with her five to six miles every day after her work at the Office of the Secretary of Defense Washington Headquarters Services.
Janette was waiting for her husband John to complete the full marathon.
“I’d like to do marathons again but I have a balance problem now and I’m afraid of falling on my face,” the 49-year-old said. “Today we ran 10 minutes per mile which is pretty good for us. Dexter ran all the way through nine miles; then we walked. This is the first race where they actually gave him a finisher’s medal!”
Marathon by division
|2||Steel Flynn||M||23||Mount Washington||PA||2:49:55|
|3||James Graves||M||21||Winston Salem||NC||2:56:26|
|3||Andrew Zernovoj||M||26||Emerald Hills||CA||2:50:31|
|2||Richard Velazquez||M||31||New York||NY||2:42:16|
|1||Karsten Brown||M||37||Front Royal||VA||2:48:18|
|3||Stephen Sundown||M||44||Upper Montclair||NJ||3:06:44|
|1||Robert Towne||M||59||Spokane Valley||WA||3:27:06|
|1||Won Yub Lee||M||73||Salamanca||NY||5:14:29|
|3||James Simpson||M||70||Huntington Beach||CA||5:36:17|
|2||Esther Kendall||F||24||New York||NY||3:18:22|
|1||Ashley Duerr||F||27||Falls Church||VA||3:15:30|
|2||Sarah Moore||F||29||Aliso Viejo||CA||3:18:21|
|1||Noalig Montagnon||F||30||New York||NY||3:11:29|
|3||Phyllis Sevik||F||47||Ellicott City||MD||3:43:00|
|1||Barbara Haney||F||53||Fort Washington||MD||3:45:05|
|2||Elizabeth Baumgarten||F||55||Stone Ridge||VA||3:53:50|
|2||Ruth Liebowitz||F||69||Staten Island||NY||5:33:52|
Half Marathon by division
|3||Brandon Marquart||M||14||Ellicott City||MD||2:12:21|
|1||Thomas Selishev||M||16||Silver Spring||MD||1:19:37|
|2||David Phipps||M||48||Severna Park||MD||1:23:35|
|3||John Michael Chapin||M||45||Alexandria||VA||1:24:37|
|2||William Loomis||M||57||Silver Spring||MD||1:33:50|
|3||Bob Becker||M||60||White Hall||MD||1:31:48|
|1||Malcolm Cohen||M||70||Ann Arbor||MI||2:22:10|
|2||David Loprinzi||M||72||King City||OR||2:22:35|
|1||Lou Wilson||M||75||The Woodlands||TX||3:21:43|
|1||Kerry Lane Magalis III||F||13||Front Royal||VA||1:52:10|
|2||Bryanna Leyen||F||14||Perry Hall||MD||2:05:58|
|3||Sarah Harmer||F||14||Wall Township||NJ||2:07:27|
|1||Jeanna Composti||F||31||New York||NY||1:24:42|
|1||Leslie Cohen||F||44||North Potomac||MD||1:24:32|
|3||Sally Foster||F||40||Linthicum Heights||MD||1:33:19|
|1||Grace McElroy||F||45||Sleepy Hollow||NY||1:29:51|
|1||Linda Ottaviano||F||56||Cold Spring Harbor||NY||1:44:42|
By Steve Nearman
October 15, 2011
For the Washington Running Report
Stephen Muange had no idea what to expect in his very first marathon experience today at the 11th edition of the Under Armour Baltimore Marathon.
So under sunny clear skies and favorable temperatures, the Kenyan distance runner laid back for nearly 26 miles before unleashing his potent finishing kick.
“Today I was scared and I didn’t want to push the pace,” said Muange, a 30-year-old who trains in Las Cruces, NM, after posting a 2:15:16. “It was my first marathon and I didn’t have any experience. Next time I will go out faster.”
His four-second victory in the last 300 meters earned Muange his largest career paycheck – $25,000. But that did not match the $27,500 his counterpart in the women’s race – Olena Shurkhno – took back to her homeland of Ukraine for not just outrunning all the females and defending her 2010 title but also for setting a new event record, good for another $2,500.
Like last year, Shurkhno put some real estate on her closest pursuers before she reached Clifton Park at Mile 19 and ran solo to the finish between Camden Yards and Ravens Stadium. In the process, she covered the course in 2:29:11, shattering Luliia Arkhipova’s 2009 mark of 2:32:09.
“I knew the record, I was trying for the record,” Shurkhno, a 34-year-old Ukranian who splits her time between her training camp in Russia and home in the Ukraine, said through her agent Andrey Baranov. “The biggest challenge was running against the wind alone. I ran 2:28 at San Diego this year.”
Conversely, Muange said he was not much affected by the gusting winds because he was tucked in a large pack of Kenyans and Ethiopians for much of the race. Many others of the 3,443 marathon starters found the winds to be bothersome. Two spots were particularly bad, going into Fells Point between 13 and 14 and around Lake Montebello between Miles 19 and 21.
It did not help local favorite Dave Berdan of Owings Mills, MD (left) in his quest for a U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier, nor did the hilly course. Berdan was forced to run solo at the front of the race for the first 55 minutes and 49 seconds when the huge lead pack was not interested in running his pace.
“Nobody wanted to go with me,” said the 30-year-old school teacher. “They were going for the money. I was going for the time.”
The time was the Olympic qualifier “A” mark of 2:19 and Berdan was gutsy and went for it. By five miles through the Maryland Zoo and past Lake Druid, Berdan had more than a minute lead on 18 elite runners out of sight behind him.
Passing Pennsylvania Station and Mile 8 as the shade of downtown fell upon the runners, the pack quickly reeled in Berdan. Shortly before the 11-mile mark, where the course turns around at the Under Armour headquarters, Berdan was consumed by a tight group of 16.
“I knew I was going to be passed by these guys at some point,” he said. Berdan cruised by the half-marathon point on the flat roads of Inner Harbor in 1:08:30, well ahead of qualifying pace. But he knew the back 13 of the Baltimore course is more difficult than the first. He worked hard to stay with the Africans.
Eventually, attrition started to trim down the pack. Berdan was one of the first to go. “At about 17 miles, starting to go up hill at Patterson Park, I ran 5:30 and the pace was dropping to 5 minutes,” said Berdan, who would end up the 10th man crossing the line in 2:21:19, a big improvement on his 2:23:45 previous best.
He offered that the effort on a faster course like Chicago might have yielded a sub-2:19 but with family and job that trip was not feasible. Though disappointed, he said he might attempt a qualifier at the Philadelphia Marathon or half marathon next month.
Nine men were still in contention around Lake Montebello and past 21 miles. Three more dropped off in the next two miles and shortly after, as the course turned down Howard Street and straight for home, the pace quickened and the pack split in half.
In the first trio, Ethiopians Tesfaye Assefaudube and Ambesse Tolosa tried to shed Muange at 24 miles as they passed the National Guard Armory. But Muange had total faith in his kick. He had used his closing speed brilliantly in January at the 3-M Half Marathon in Austin as he outran another Ethiopian, Girma Tolla, who scratched from today’s race.
A prolific road race, Muange was a frequent flier on the U.S. roads this year, running the elite races Credit Union Cherry Blossom in Washington (7th) and Crescent City in New Orleans (7th) in April, Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon in Duluth, MN (4th) in June, Peachtree 10K in Atlanta (11th), Boilermaker 15K in Utica, N.Y. (4th), Crazy Eights 8K in Kingsport, TN (3rd), and Wharf to Wharf 10K in Santa Cruz, CA (5th) in July.
“I knew I had the speed,” Muange said. “Last year, I ran 27:14 for 10,000 meters and I ran an 8K in 22 minutes in August. I’m good in speed. I was not worried at the end.”
As the three reached the ally adjacent to Camden Yards, about 100 meters to the 26-mile marker, Muange turned it on and quickly put distance on Tolosa and Assefaudube, who hit the finish just four and six seconds, respectively, behind him. Tolosa earned $14,000 and Assefaudube banked $8,000.
“My left foot hurt me a little after 30 kilometers,” said Tolosa, who twice has run 2:08, in 2004 and 2006.
Pre-race favorite and 2008 victor and course-record holder Julius Keter was 11th in 2:21:53.
Behind them, the women had been keying off defending champion Shurkhno. A group of 10 at five miles dwindled down to six by 10 miles and five by the half marathon passed in 1:15:22.
“I started to pick up the pace after the half marathon,” Shurkhno said. “It was a little bit slow between miles 13 and 14. I didn’t remember the course from last year. But I started to remember it at Miles 20 and 21 around the lake and at the finish. I love the lake but it’s windy.”
Shurkhno (left) slowly pulled from her competition and entered the loop around Lake Montebello with a solid 30-second lead.
Behind her was Russian Ludmila Biktasheva, working her way back into serious competition after the birth of daughter Yana two years ago next week. In her third marathon, she said she found the second half of the course “challenging, but overall I’m satisfied with second place.” Her 2:29:57 also surpassed the event record and was a three-minute personal best.
“From 16 to 20 miles, the third place woman and I were running together but after 20 miles, I was running alone in second place,” said the 37-year-old Biktasheva, who scored $14,000. “I was keeping the pace but she was slowing down.”
Hellen Kimatai of Kenya was third in 2:31:10, good for $8,000.
Masters competitions in the Under Armour Baltimore Marathon were won by Alexey Khokhlov, a 40-year-old Russian living in Gaithersburg, MD in 2:28:57 and local favorite 43-year-old Denise Knickman of Baltimore in 3:09:47. Each earned $1,000 for their triumphs.
In addition to the Under Armour Baltimore Marathon, the Under Armour Baltimore Running Festival – its largest field ever with 25,000 entrants – attracted another 9235 starters in the half marathon and 2,959 starters in the 5K.
In the accompanying CareFirst Half Marathon Habib Ettarfaoui of Pikesville, MD and Katrin Kreil of Hannover, Germany nailed victories in 1:11:59 and 1:24:07, respectively. In the 5K, Tristram Thomas of Baltimore and Cara Wettlaufer of Nottingham, MD were top finishers in 15:34 and 1:19:14, respectively.
“It was a beautiful day, a little windy, but we had a great competition in the men’s race being so close and a record for the women,” Lee Corrigan, President of Corrigan Sports Enterprises and Race Director of the Under Armour Baltimore Running Festival, said. “All in all, a great day for Baltimore.”
By Steve Nearman
October 09, 2011
For the Washington Running Report
Tesfaye Sendeku left little drama today at the nation’s largest 10-mile footrace, the Army Ten-Miler. Just two miles into the race along Constitution Avenue, he already was 19 seconds ahead of the field. By the midpoint near the Washington Monument, he was 38 ticks out front.
That was a wild contrast to the women’s race behind him. It turned into a battle of three international teammates with one local American closely trailing and hoping to spoil a sweep. Such were the storylines of the 27th running of the Army Ten-Miler. Staged out of the Pentagon North parking lot for the first time in at least a decade, some 23,300 starters and 21,890 finishers of the 30,000 entries enjoyed superb weather conditions – temperatures in the upper 50s to lower 60s, calm breezes and low humidity.
The first people to benefit from the conditions were the Golden Knights, who to a man landed on the bulls-eye near the start line as they parachuted down from high in the sky. Then off went the early starters, consisting of dozens and dozens of hand-cyclists, some visually-impaired runners, and scores of
It was the Wounded Warriors that moved Sendeku on this morning. While he was using the race as a long tempo run in preparation for the Under Armour Baltimore Marathon just six days away, he had other motivations for passing up a paycheck elsewhere to run Army for free.
“I didn’t care about time, I just wanted to win,” said Sendeku, who forgot to start his watch before finishing in 47:51. “I came to support the Army and the Wounded Warriors program. [Army Ten-Miler] has no prize money. It is more than the prize money. I’m very glad to run for the Wounded Warriors.” His team ran this year to honor David Wynne Francis, an Army veteran who passed away last month.
Two 28-year-olds with the Army’s World Class Athlete Program training at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs, CO – Robert Cheseret, brother of U.S. record holder Bernard Lagat, and Augustus Maiyo, a Kenyan-turned-American – pursued Sendeku for most of the race and had to sort it out for second with a kick in the last 50 meters. They finished second and third, respectively, with the same time of 48:21.
The Brazilian Army team again performed admirably, placing Frank De Almeida (4th in 48:46) , Clodoaldo Da Silva (5th in 48:56), 2008 Army champ Reginaldo Campos Jr. (7th in 49:11) and Cicero Da Rocha (8th in 49:21) in the top 10.
But the drama was in the women’s race. Teammates Tezata Dengera, Serkalem Abrha-Biset (left), and Shiferaw Tiringo-Getachew, who train together in Washington, exchanged the lead in a tight pack from early on with Amanda Rice of North Bethesda closely clinging on in fourth. They passed through five miles in 28:18 and 10K in 35:14, and it was not until shortly before nine miles on the 14th Street Bridge that Rice, a U.S. Navy lieutenant at Bethesda Naval Hospital, fell off for good and eventually ended up fourth in 57:17.
The 30-year-old Dengera, a Turkish citizen born in Ethiopia, waited until the last half mile to unleash her kick, triumphing in 56:35. Abrha-Biset, still recovering from a marathon in Montreal two weeks ago, could not respond, following five seconds later and Tiringo-Getachew was right behind her.
“I’m still tired from the marathon I ran two weeks ago in Montreal,” the 24-year-old Abrha-Biset said, clocking 56:40.
“And I knew that,” Dengera countered with a smile. “I ran the first half of the race pretty comfortable. It was according to the plan I made during training.”
Tiringo-Getachew said she was happy with third in 56:44.
For 2004 Olympian Dan Browne of Chula Vista, CA, victor here in 1997, 1998, and 2004, he was hampered by a nagging right hip injury and never challenged, struggling in at 44th place in 54:27.
Peggy Yetman of Leesburg, VA, repeated as top female master in 1:00:01 and Edmund Burke of Burtonsville, MD, took male masters honors in 52:57.
“I dropped off a little at the end,” said Yetman, a 42-year-old mother of two in training for Ironman Cozumel in November to add to three Ironman Kona podium finishes. “I went out conservatively so I wouldn’t blow up.”
1. Tesfaye Sendeku, ETHIOPIA/CA, 47:51
2. Robert Cheseret, Colorado Springs, CO, 48:21
3. Augustus Maiyo, Colorado Springs, CO, 48:21
4. Frankc De Almeida, BRAZIL, 48:46
5. Clodoaldo Da Silva, BRAZIL, 48:56
6. Tariku Bokan, ETHIOPIA/MD, 49:08
7. Reginaldo Campos Jr., BRAZIL, 49:11
8. Cicero Da Rocha, BRAZIL, 49:21
9. John Mickowski, Colorado Springs, CO, 49:37
10. Charles Ware III, Wheeling, IL, 49:46
1. Edmund Burke, Burtonsville, MD, 52:57
2. Mike Scannell, Gland Blanc, MI, 53:39
3. Liam Collins, Cortlandt Manor, NY, 54:13
1. Tezata Dengera, TURKEY/Washington, DC, 56:35
2. Serkalem Abrha-Biset, ETHIOPIA /Washington, DC, 56:40
3. Shiferaw Tiringo-Getachew, ETHIOPIA/Washington, DC, 56:44
4. Amanda Rice, N. Bethesda, MD, 57:17
5. Erin Koch, Chevy Chase, MD, 57:48
6. Emily Shertzer, Jonestown, PA, 58:00
7. Kelly Calway, Manitou Springs, CO, 58:04
8. Emily Potter, Southern Pines, NC, 58:23
9. Caitlin Chrisman, Charlotte, NC, 58:34
10. Meagan Neldo, Charlotte, NC, 58:56
1. Peggy Yetman, Leesburg, VA, 1:00:01
2. Alisa Harvey, Manassas, VA, 1:01:56
3. Bethann Telford, Fairfax, VA, 1:04:45
By Steve Nearman
Alexandria, VA February 27, 2010
For the Washington Running Report
Burke & Herbert Bank & Trust Company announces that it will be the Title Sponsor of the inaugural Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon, set for September 19, 2010.
Long a community leader in the Washington region, the venerable financial institution now partners with the Woodrow Wilson Half Marathon to promote fitness and well-being in the community it has called home since its inception some 158 years ago.
“Burke & Herbert Bank is Northern Virginia’s hometown bank and I cannot think of a better way to celebrate our role in the community than to be the lead sponsor of this terrific event,” said Scott McSween, President and Chief Operating Officer at Burke and Herbert Bank. “A half marathon tests determination, endurance, and strength – all key characteristics of our Bank which has served folks in our community since 1852. We are most proud to serve as the inaugural sponsor of what I know will be a wonderful event.”
The destination half marathon will begin at the historic Mount Vernon home of George Washington in Alexandria, Virginia and will end at the new luxurious National Harbor resort in Maryland. The 13.1-mile course will be certified by USA Track & Field.
The half marathon is the first professional race ever across the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge and will include an Awakening Statue finish and a Rude Awakening climb up the majestic Woodrow Wilson Bridge. Completed in 2008, the wider new bridge removed an infamous Interstate 95 bottleneck that had been the bane of frustration for Beltway motorists for decades.
The race will benefit six charity partners: the American Heart Association, Autism Speaks, Alice Ferguson Foundation, Child & Family Network Centers of Alexandria, Washington Area Women’s Foundation, and Back on My Feet – DC.
“We are fortunate that years of careful planning and fiscal restraint have put Burke and Herbert Bank in a position to sponsor a new tradition in Northern Virginia. We are proud to be of assistance to the worthy charities serving the needs of our community,” said Hunt Burke, Chief Executive Officer. “I am delighted that people will associate Burke and Herbert Bank with this Half Marathon for years to come.”
Steve Nearman, event founder and director, echoed Mr. Burke’s comments, adding:
“We are overjoyed that the Burke & Herbert Bank name will grace our half marathon. Burke & Herbert Bank has set a very high standard of quality, service, and satisfaction in banking and we are committed to doing the same in the race management business.”
For information, visit wilsonbridgehalf.com or call Steve Nearman at 703-587-4321. And stay updated on FaceBook – wilsonbridgehalf
By Steve Nearman
January 7, 2010
For the Washington Running Report
The destination half marathon will begin at the historic Mount Vernon home of George Washington in Alexandria, Virginia, and will end at the new luxurious National Harbor resort in Maryland. The 13.1-mile course will be USATF certified.
Registration began today at www.wilsonbridgehalf.com. Entries will be limited to 4,000 starters for the inaugural running.
For the first time since the Woodrow Wilson Bridge was first constructed in 1961, runners will have an opportunity to race across the infamous bridge which has been the bain of frustration for motorists passing over the Potomac River from Maryland to Virginia and back on the congested Interstate 95.
“Runners love bridges and until you actually run up and over the Wilson Bridge you cannot believe what a cool feeling that is,” said Steve Nearman, founder of Endurance Enterprises and event director of Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon. “You are right there with the vehicles and the view of Washington’s monuments is spectacular.”
Runners will be transported from National Harbor by bus to the start line at Mount Vernon. From there, the scenic course rolls along the George Washington Memorial Parkway to quaint historic Old Town Alexandria, then over the Potomac River via the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. The world-famous Awakening statue will greet the runners at the finish line at National Harbor.
“The challenge on this course is the rise up the bridge at 10.5 miles, more than a half mile climb I affectionately call ‘The Rude Awakening,'” said Nearman, a veteran running journalist and distance competitor. “Boston may have its Heartbreak Hill, but we have a heartbreak hill of our own, too.”
Pacers Events, the race director for the highly successful GW Parkway Classic 10-Miler and other quality Washington area running events, will serve as race director for the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon. See www.runpacers.com.
The race will benefit more than a half-dozen local charity partners. Training programs associated with the half marathon will be announced soon. Age group awards and prize money will be announced as well.
Hotel packages are being arranged for those athletes and their families interested in a weekend sightseeing visit to Washington’s plethora of attractions.
For information, visit wilsonbridgehalf.com or call Steve Nearman at 703-587-4321.