Over the weekend, there were great races all over the world. I’m going to give a short recap of a few of them:
The Tarawera Ultramarathon was cut short due to cyclone Lusi. The race is normally 100km but it was reduced to 65km (although several racers thought it was closer to 70km). Sage Canaday repeated as champion and used a strong surge to pull away for a 19-minute victory.
1) Sage Canaday 5:33:38
2) Yun Yan-Qiao 5:52:30
3) Vajin Armstrong 5:57:49
1) Jo Johansen 7:02:43
2) Claire Walton 7:11:48
3) Dawn Tuffery 7:16:16
NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships:
How about that smooth transition from an ultramarathon to indoor track?! I’m not a huge fan of indoor track so I’m going to keep it short and sweet. Once again, Abbey D’Agostino won the 5000m (16:20.39) and 3000m (9:14.47). She is the first person in NCAA history to repeat this double. The 3000m on Saturday was her seventh NCAA individual national championship. If not for Mary Cain, this is the young woman that we would all be talking about as the future of U.S. middle distance running.
NYC Half Marathon:
This one did not exactly go as planned. The stage was set for a fantastic matchup between Geoffrey Mutai and Mo Farah. Personally, I was hoping for something along the lines of the Mo Farah/Kenenisa Bekele duel from the Great North Run. However, it was not to be. As you may have heard by now, Mo Farah went down hard near the six-mile mark. His heel may have gotten clipped, but it is tough to say based on the webcast (whatever happened, it was clearly accidental).
Farah got back up and continued running but the race was essentially over at that point. He pushed hard and managed to take second overall – a mere 18 seconds back. Shortly after finishing, Mo collapsed into the arms of third place finisher Stephen Sambu.
It turned into a scary moment, and you can see the concern on the faces of Geoffrey Mutai and Mary Wittenberg. Off to the side, the top American finisher, Matt Tegenkamp, is with Mo’s daughter.
In the post-race news conference, Mo stated:
“I feel good… I don’t remember passing out, but I think it was just – I tried so hard in the race, obviously, taking a fall and then going through… I’m all right. It’s fine. It’s no big deal.”
On a happier note, Ellie Greenwood returned to the ultra scene after being injured for most of 2013 and she won the Chuckanut 50k in 4:11:51. Max King took the men’s race and set a course record of 3:35:42.
I didn’t race this weekend but I managed to get a few miles in. On Saturday, I went outside as the temperature crept into the 30s. Unfortunately, it was rather chilly on Sunday and I stuck to the treadmill. The relentless winter continues, as the temperature is barely going to crack freezing this week (it’s 5 degrees Farenheit as we “speak”). The snowpack is still substantial and I don’t expect to be seeing trails any time soon. Somebody, please send warmer weather!!