Rainier To Ruston Rail-Trail Relay

I’m a huge fan of the team aspect of running, therefore relays are one of my favorite types of races. In fact I’m going to try and add a relay race section to my Race Schedule page in the near future. If you have never taken part in a relay race I would highly recommend you give it a try. There is no better way to bond with a group of fellow runners. One great relay race in our area is the Rainier to Ruston Rail-Trail Relay on June 6, 2009 (National Trails Day).

The Rainier to Ruston Rail-Trail Relay begins at Mt. Rainier National Park and runs 50 miles along the Foothills Trail to Ruston Ruston Way in Tacoma. According to the race website the course “passes through pristine wilderness and communities, following the old Northern Pacific railroad grade that once brought settlers and supplies to the west”. The race is broken into 12 legs and you can enter as a teams of 2, 3, 4, or 6 runners. There is also a 50 mile or a 50K solo option (the race is a qualifier for the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run) and a 27 mile walking relay. Please check out the Rainier to Ruston website for more information. Hopefully I will see you at the race.

I would like to thank race founder and co-director John Selby for getting me the information about this year’s race. If any of you know of any races that you think should be mentioned on this site please let me know.


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2009 Henry Weinhard’s St. Patrick’s Day Dash

Over 7,000 participant braved the snow, rain and cold to take part in the 2009 St. Patrick’s Day Dash in downtown Seattle. This year’s event had a completely new (well not quite, the start was still the same) course. Instead of running on the Viaduct, runners now did an out and back on Aurora (Hwy 99). I have to admit, I really was not excited about the new course. But after running it I didn’t think it was that bad.

Basically, the new course is uphill on the way out. Then you turn around and run down hill back to the finish. The course is still an odd length, so really can’t compare you time to other races. I guess that gives the race a kind of XC feel, in that your time isn’t really important instead its all about the competition. And this race always brings out a lot of good runners so you can count on a lot of competition. I would love to hear what other runners thought of the new course, if you ran this year’s race and want to share your thoughts please leave me a comment.

Here are the results for the top 10 men and women (full results).

       Men’s top 10 

 1. Mark Mandi    19:14
2.   Jesse William   19:53
3.   Joshua Ricardi   19:56
4.   Bruce Jackson   19:59
5.   Tahoma Khalsa   20:00
6.   Steve Dekoker   20:07
7.   Tony Young   20:15
8.   Nick Hird   20:18
9.   Jim Jurcevich   20:30
10.   Mario Farioli   20:41

      Women’s Top 10

1.   Lauren Matthews   22:35
2.   Sally Bergesen   22:58
3.   Rose Wetzel   23:03
4.   Lyudmila Vasilyeva   23:29
5.   Jeanine Stewart   23:31
6.   Diane Lacki   23:34
7.   Amy-Eloise Neale   23:50
8.     Jodie Isomura   23:55
9.   Regina Joyce   24:02
10.   Shelly Hack   24:21

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Another World Record For Tony Young

Over this past weekend Tony Young of Redmond won a masters 1500 meter race that was held as part of the USATF Indoor National Championships in Boston. Tony’s time of 3:57.91 was almost 10 seconds ahead of the second place finisher and beat the world record for the 45 and over age group by about 4 and a half seconds. This was Tony’s third world record this year! On January 30th Tony ran a 4:13.25 for the mile, which is the fastest mile by a 45 and over runner ever, indoor or outdoor. However, since it was on the oversized UW track it doen’t actually count as a world record. Then on February 14th Tony ran a 1:55.70 800 again beating the 45+ age group world recond. But once again, since it was on the oversized UW track it will not count as an official world record.

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2009 Love ’em or Leave ’em 5K

With just under 2000 finishers, I think the 2009 Love ’em or Leave ’em 5K at Greenlake was the largest running of this event so far. Yet due to the new course (course map) that is primarily on the roads around Greenlake and the great job of the event staff there were no problems handling the larger crowds. Not only does this race have a fun and festive atmosphere, but thanks to the flat, certified course it also draws some very fast runners. If you are looking for a fast and fun early season 5K I would highly recommend the Love ’em or Leave ’em 5k.

Besides the individual age group and overall winners there was also a team competition. There were two runners per team and they were scored based on their combined time. Below are the winners of the team competition (full results).

Women under 79 (combined age)
1.   41:27 Just Friends  (team average 20:44)
      20:22    Veronica Sackett
      21:05    Laura Ruppert
Women masters (combined age over 80)
1.   37:52 Team BS  (team average 18:56)
      18:16    Sally Bergesen 
      19:36    Elizabeth Stahl
Men under 79 (combined age)
1.   32:51 Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Cupids (team average 16:26)
      16:11     Leif Kohler  
      16:40     Chris Tremonte
Men masters (combined age over 80)
1.   32:13 seattle running club (team average 16:07)
      15:29    Greg Crowther 
      16:44    Henry Wigglesworth
The individual winners ran some amazing times that will surely be showing up on the NW Runner Best Times List. Below are the top 5 men and women (full results).
Female overall results
1.  Heather Gallagher   18:00
2.  Sally Bergesen       18:16
3.  Christina Feliz        18:39
4.  Erica Pitman          19:00
5.  Karen Demartini      19:10

Male overall results

1.  Brett Winegar         15:03

2.  Greg Crowther        15:29

3.  Joe Darda              15:33

4.  Bruce Jackson       15:53

5.  Eddie Stickler        15:56

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Tony Young beats the indoor mile World Record for 45 and over

On January 31st at the UW Invitational at the Dempsey Indoor track 46 year old Tony Young of Redmond, WA ran a 4:13.25 in the mile. This was not only faster than indoor world record for age 45 and over but the fastest mile indoor or outdoor that a runner 45 or older has ever run. Unfortunately, since the UW indoor track is an oversized track Tony’s time will not count as the official world record. The official indoor mile record is 4:21.90 by Albin Swenson. The previous fastest indoor or outdoor mile was a 4:16.09, which Tony ran outdoors last year down in Gresham, OR. If you would like to see a video of Tony’s indoor world record, it is at Flotrack.com. Also, you can see a post race interview with Tony at Runnerspace.com.

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2009 Hayward Classic Masters Track Meet Cancelled

I am currently working on putting together a list of outdoor track meets in Northwest that will be available to open and masters runners to compete in this spring and summer. Hopefully I will have that up soon. But I do want to let everyone know that one of the best masters track meets around (don’t forget that you only have to be 30 to compete in masters track meets), the Hayward Classic in Eugene, OR has been cancelled for 2009.

According to an e-mail I received from Ruth BreMiller of the Oregon Track Club, they were unable to secure the use of Hayward Field and the other options that were available were not adequate to put on a high quality meet. However, Ruth did go on to tell me that they already have a firm commitment to use Hayward Field in late June 2010. So the Hayward Classic will be back next year.

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Favorite Workouts – 4x1000m/300m

If you do enough workouts on the track eventually it can become difficult to come up with new and interesting ideas for what to run (although personally, I believe any time I get to run on the track its fun no matter what the workout is). Therefore, I decided I would post some of my favorite track workouts to help give you some ideas.

Today’s workout is 4 x 1000 meters/300 meters. The 1000 meters is run at or just faster than 5K pace followed by the 300 meters at mile pace. I heard of this workout in a Running Times podcast interview of Pete Rea (coach of ZAP Fitness) called Your Last Hard Workout. The podcast actually lists a few workouts that Pete uses with the ZAP Fitness team, this happens to be my favorite of the bunch.

What makes this workout so fun for me is the mixing of different paces, which is also what makes it challenging. I always seem to have a hard time getting back to 5K pace after that first 300. I really like to use this workout as part of my training for a 5K or shortly before a 10K (makes the 10K pace feel much easier). As far as rest goes, I use a 200 meter jog between the 1000 and the 300 and then a 400 meter jog between the 300 and 1000.

I hope you find this workout as enjoyable as I do. Please let me know what you think of it. Or if you have any favorite workouts you would like to tell me about feel free to leave me a comment. I will try and post a new workout every so often.

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