Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Equinox Age Grade and Other Numbers

Here are some masters age grade results. It was a rough day out there for sure.  A lot of runners were off pace. It was one of those days that the longer you were out there the tougher it got. So that made for tough going many of the masters runners.

Matias Saari (44) 2:55:01 - 75.62%
Roger Sayre (56) 3:15:51 – 75.25%
Jane Lanford (59) 4:15:42 – 71.19%
Erika VanFlein (54) 4:24:24 – 64.15%
Martha Brettell (61) 4:35:44 – 68.01%

Not only was Saari the oldest winner of all time at 44 on Saturday, he has the highest men’s age grade for the Equinox Marathon with a 75.91 in 2012. He almost matched that, and had there been better weather probably would have gone faster. With the 75.25% I jumped from 3rd all time runner to 2nd , ahead of Frank Bonzanich’s storied 2:58 in 1984.  I was hoping to take the all-time lead, but that would have required a sub 3:14:10. That was definitely not in the cards considering the poor weather on Saturday. And with a top weather advantage, Saari could have broken his 2012 age grade. So I’ll happily take the 2nd spot for men.

Jane Lanford scored an excellent 71.19% to lead the women. Maybe not the time record she was hoping for, but a very good age grade result. Marth Brettell of Cody Wyoming scored 68.0% with her age group win in the 60-64 category and Erika VanFlein was at 64.15%.

SPLITS 2013 vs 2014
I won’t post up all the splits but some definitely did it different than 2013. Last year I went in with a goal of sub 3:15 but felt ready maybe for under 3:14, so I paced myself for that. My goal this year was just to beat last year’s time and maybe run in the 3:15s. So I held back for the first 9 miles.

2013 3 mile was 20:55 compared to 22:03
2013 5 mile was 34:57 compared to 36:09
2013 9 mile was 1:02:29 compared to 1:04:53!
2013 12 mile was 1:30:20 compared to 1:31:09
2013 turn around was 1:54:50 compared to 1:55:10
2013 18 mile was 2:19:24 compared to 2:18:35
2013 22 mile was 2:46:14 compared to 2:45:23
So the upshot was that even though I was way back by 9 or 10 miles, I made it up on the out and back and final miles. The snow last year had a factor, but I also locked up a bit due to the cold, which had as much or more effect than the wet weather last Saturday.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

My Own Private Equinox Legacy

I revised my report. Names of the innocent have been removed.  I ran my own race out there for the entire 3:15 and did not hold back or pick it up for anyone.

The standard for an Equinox legacy is for sub 3 times, top 5 finishes. I arrived here at age 46 and got one top 5. Other than that you're SOL. 

Masters legacies are a bit more open-ended. It more has to do with and consecutive marathons (or lifetime in the double figures) and how "in" you are. 

Anyway, below is a just the facts summary of things that are not on the official record (EQ report).

I was here for 11 Equinoxes, and participated in all of them just not all were the marathon. Of five starts in the marathon, five finishes all of them top 10. Just one outright masters title (2004), but four age class wins (and one 2nd place), and three more overall masters (40+) runners-up. Also I wrap up with four age records (48, 50, 55, 56), and were it not for the 2+ minute train delay in 2004 it would be five for five. Have talked some about age grading over the years, and finish now with the 2nd highest male masters age grade. The official report doesn’t list that. It’s pretty damn obvious they don’t really like carpetbaggers here in Alaska. Also, although this category is not acknowledged, oldest top 10 finisher with a 7th at 55 and 8th at 56, and second oldest top 5 finisher with that 5th in 2004. No

I also participated in three relays, doing each leg once. I truly enjoyed those experiences and sharing the fun with other runners. Each was a win. In 2007 we won the men’s title (Paul Greci, Roy Strandberg), 2009 I was the improbable third leg with a couple of fine young runners (Werner Hoefler and David Norris) and we ran the 2nd fastest relay ever (now 3rd), and in 2011 teamed up with a couple of fellow masters (Mark Lindberg and Hannibal Grubis), and we broke the all-time masters record.

In years that I did not run (injury, or focusing on other things) I participated on race day by working on the race course. The Out and Back Aid station in 2005 when I had a stress fracture, Sheep Creek crossing in 2010, and Henderson Road turn off in 2012.

So that’s my legacy and I’m not disappointed, and leave with no regrets (well except maybe for that train and a couple ill-timed injuries).