Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bairu, Boaz Rock Philadelphia Half

Going up against very stiff competition, Simon Bairu and Boaz Cheboiywo took 5th and 10th, respectively, in the 2010 Rock ‘N Roll Philadelphia Half-Marathon. Tim Nelson, Bairu’s teammate with the Oregon Track Club, placed 11th. The OTC pair was looking for what Nelson called a “competitive workout” as part of their build-up to November 7th’s ING NYC Marathon, but the teammates parted early, as a pair of Kenyan athletes started surging from the very beginning of the race, breaking the contenders into chase packs. Track standout Matthew Kisorio soon established himself, running the last half of the race — and winning — largely unchallenged.

Bairu, for his part, went with the front pack for as long as possible, competing for 3rd position with Boaz, Peter Some (Kenya) and Shawn Forrest (Australia) for the middle miles of the race. While Some got Simon in the end, and marathon star Abderrahim Goumri came up from the 2nd chase pack to nab 3rd, Bairu still finished an impressive 5th in 1:02:08 — a new PB made all the more impressive by the fact that Bairu felt less than sharp, pointing to the fact that he had done virtually no work at half-marathon pace. Boaz held on for 10th in 1:03:01, while Nelson, charging hard, almost caught the Eastern Michigan alum and fellow KIMbian, finishing in 11th place at 1:03:03.

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Quigley Claims First US Title in New Haven 20k

Sean Quigley can’t be anything but proud after taking home his first US Championship in any discipline, winning the Stratton Faxon New Haven 20k on Labor Day, with a time of 59:21.  Calling his post-collegiate career a “disappointment” to date, Quigley stepped up to take down US road champions Mo Trafeh, Brett Gotcher, and KIMbia’s James Carney, making New Haven the impressive win that the Massachusetts native had long been seeking.

Gotcher entered the race as the defending champion, Trafeh the returning runner-up, and Carney the 2008 champion. Late in the race,  Trafeh, Carney, and Quigley had broken away, and after weathering a surge by Trafeh, each KIMbia man made a bid for the win.  Carney went first, opening a gap during the long final straightaway, with Quigley just behind.  With a half-mile to go, it was Quigley’s move that came last and propelled him to first place: a victory in the longest race he had ever contested. Carney finished third, just four seconds behind Trafeh, while Jason Hartmann placed 8th in 60:44.

Full coverage can be found here.

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Friday, September 3, 2010

Solinsky Wraps 2010 with PB, Bizuneh is US 10-Mile Champ

Half a world apart, Chris Solinsky and Fasil Bizuneh each spent the weekend turning in strong performances in towns off the beaten path.

Solinsky wrapped up a banner 2010 campaign with a PB, running 7:34.32 for 3,000m to take 5th in Rieti, a hilltop town northeast of Rome.  Placing 5th in an outstanding field that featured Bernard Lagat and Tariku Bekele, Solinsky bettered his previous lifetime best by almost two and a half seconds.  While the American record of 7:30.84 may have been in mind, going in, Solinsky’s performance came on the heels of several days feeling under the weather, and what he described as feeling “stung” from his outstanding effort in Zurich, the week prior.  Thought Lagat snagged the headlines by lowering the American record to 7:29.00, Solinsky is already looking forward to some downtime back home in the Midwest, recovering from a landmark 2010, and recharging for a renewed effort to make 2011 an even more historic season.

Meanwhile, in the heart of the Midwest, Bizuneh snagged his first-ever US title, winning the USATF 10-Mile Championship with a time of 47:29. Read the full article

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