Races in Milwaukee, Utah, and both Portlands.
The USA Championships at Twin Cities drew most of the marathon world’s attention on Sunday, just as Chicago will do next Sunday. But in October in the United States, there’s a mix of marathons across the country, offering a wide range of running experiences and a sweeping array of sizes, scenery and levels of competition. Here’s what happened in some of this weekend’s marathon action.
Sunday’s Portland Marathon got a repeat winner, Californian Jameson Mora, who reached the finish in 2:20:53. Mora, 29, ran a career best 2:15:44 at Grandma’s in Duluth in June. “I knew I couldn’t run that fast, so I just wanted to win,” he told The Oregonian, after beating the field by nearly nine minutes. Mora says his Asics Aggies club will give him a bonus for his victory, “big enough to be worth a plane ticket, a hotel room and bring a little home to the family.”
Portland’s women’s winner was Rachel Jaten, of Spokane, Washington, in 2:42:13. “It’s a win, it’s qualifying for the Olympic Trials, so it’s pretty nice,” said Jaten, who took a decade off from running after college. “I forgot why I loved it, so I took a break. A few years ago, I realized what I was missing.”
Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon
There was a repeat men’s champion at the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon, too. Ryan Meissen, who won on the point-to-point course in 2:28:23, got a side stitch that lasted about a half-mile. “It didn’t feel too hot,” he told the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel. “Other than that, I thought it was a strong run for myself.”
Meissen, who was 20th at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, won in Milwaukee in 2012 with a quicker 2:24:53. The stitch may have made some of the difference, but more to the point, he made clear, was the fact that at the time of 2012’s race, “my son was only about a month old. Since then, family life takes over a lot of this stuff. It’s just fun to come out here and race. I’m slower now, but I can live with that.”
Amanda Daws spoke to Melissa Burkart two miles into the Milwaukee race. “She told me what time she was trying to run; she said 2:45. I knew we weren’t going to be running together after that,” Daws realized. Indeed, Burkart ran 2:45:30, the fastest women’s time in the Lakefront Marathon in 18 years, and Daws was a distant second in 2:58:26.
St George Marathon
The St. George Marathon in Utah, near the Arizona border, has been praised as one of the “marathons to build a vacation around” by Runner’s World. It’s also a very fast one; the route, which begins in the Pine Valley Mountains, has an elevation drop of 2,600 feet.
Officially, St. George is now even faster. On Saturday, as StGeorgeUtah.comreports, Bryant Jensen won the race in 2:15:57, taking 45 seconds off the previous record set by Nick Schuetze in 2007. The 2012 St. George champ, Fritz Van de Kamp, placed second behind Jensen in 2:20:05. The top ten men were all Utah residents.
The women’s winner was Rosy Lee in 2:37:04, just 58 seconds slower than the all-time St. George record. Amber Green, the race’s 2012 champion, finished second in 2:40:03.
Rob Gomez did one crucial thing differently in preparation for Sunday’s Maine Marathon in Portland. He had asked his pal Dan Vassallo, a Colby College graduate from Massachusetts, to run last year’s marathon with him, which Vassallo won in a course record 2:21:12, while Gomez was the runner-up.
This time, “I didn’t invite him back,” Gomez, 30, told the Maine Sunday Telegram. “I wanted to get a little redemption this year.” He achieved that. Gomez was first in a field of 1,162 by more than ten minutes in 2:24:22, with Maine House of Delegates member Adam Goode second in 2:34:18. Gomez got $500 plus a $1,000 bonus for breaking 2:25.
Gomez is from the Maine town of Saco. The marathon’s women’s winner, Leah Frost, is from Round Pound, but she attended high school in Switzerland and ran for one season on the Wesleyan University cross country squad. “I haven’t raced since my freshman year of college until this winter, when I got excited about it again,“ said Frost, also 30, who took first in 3:00:52, with Bostonian Dana Deingenis next in 3:04:06.
Smuttynose Rocket Marathon
The weekend’s most vividly named road race was surely this marathon in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire, with 941 finishers. Jason Eddy hadn’t run a marathon since 2004 and had forsaken running for a CPA career until he began to fit other activity into his life a year ago. Eddy, 34, battled strong rain and stiff ocean breezes to win in 2:38:17. “It was luckily not too hot and the rain actually felt good,” he told Seacoastonline.com. “I’ve been doing a lot of training and my body was ready for the last 10-K,” added Eddy, who’s due to become a father for the second time next week.
Rachel C. , PhD
Research Scientist Consultant @ U-VIB
PhD, Doctor of Philosophy in Counseling
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source: Runner’s World By Peter Gambaccini