Monday, September 5, 2011

Recap of KIMbia in Daegu at 2011 World Championships

Despite a promising early season that saw four athletes qualify for the US team headed to Daegu, the 2011 World Championships ended up a somewhat lackluster affair for the members of KIMbia Athletics.

Beginning on a down note, Chris Solinsky and Delilah DiCrescenzo had to withdraw from the competition due to injuries — though Solinsky’s withdrawal opened the door for teammate Andrew Bumbalough to make the trip. Once there, Bumbalough drew the second of two heats for the 5000m, a race which featured three more competitors than the other heat and, eventually, a mid-race fall that seemed to unsettle the quick early pace. After things slowed dramatically in the fourth kilometer, Bumbi came home in 13:44, a time placing him 9th in the heat and just a few seconds outside of qualifying via time.

In the 10,000m, despite possessing the fitness that powered a 30:59 solo effort at the US Championships, and a 14:45 in Paris, Shalane Flanagan placed 7th in 31:25, while teammate Matt Tegenkamp took 10th on the Men’s side. If the performances were behind what we have seen from Flanagan and Tegenkamp in previous world-level championships (notably, Flanagan’s Olympic Bronze in 2008, and Tegenkamp’s 4th Place in the Osaka World Championship 5000m in 2007), the meet did mark Teg’s first tussle with the 10,000m distance at this level.

Moreover, Daegu also capped a year in which Bumbalough made both the cross country and the outdoor track World Championship teams for the first time as a senior athlete, after representing the US on the junior level in each discipline. Beyond that impressive achievement, the experience at Worlds will surely serve the young athlete well, having made breakthroughs on the track (14-second 5000m PB) and cross country (2nd at US Champs) this year.

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