22 May 2010

At Mile 21/8: Fargo Marathon 2010

I spectated at wonderful spot on 9th street. I got there just as the bulk of the halfies were coming. The weather greatly improved but couldn't find time to blog my observations as I was having too much fun. At this vantage point I was at key point in the marathon. This is where the the so called "2nd Race" begins. When I ran Sioux City a number of years ago, this was the spot were you needed motivation because you were really hitting the wall. And there was plenty of motivation at the corner in addition to some big farm equipment. The aid station was just a block south of my "perch."
I ate a little breakfast with my friends on the porch and eagerly awaited the men's marathon leaders.
The wheelchair leader went by in a breeze.
Then almost 30 minutes later I could see an official bike coming. Who was it? It wasn't a Kenyan! It was Minnesota's own Chris Erichsen (see picture below)!!

Chris Erichsen opened a lead from the Kenyans a few miles back. It was also at a very decent clip. I cheered Chris on and looked in the distance. Nothing.
It would be another minute before another run passed.
I was anticipating a Kenyan victory today with the weather but the rain changed the field. It was also quite windy as the race progressed. I believe the Re/Max balloon could not be launched because of the strong gusts on the end of the storm system.
Chris ended up smashing Pete Gilman's record from last year to finish at 2:19.55. I believe this might be a "b" Olympic qualifying time. The results website is being difficult so I can't tell you the top ten but Chris certainly defied expectations since this was his debut at this distance. But there has been much expectation from him. He certainly is one to watch.
On the women's side, as the papers expected, Leah Thorvilson tore up the competition and set a new course record at 2:41. I had mistakenly said she went to USC but she went to Arkansas-Little Rock. It appears they have the same mascot and similar colors. Anyways reading a little more about her here. It appears she is a great gal and describes herself as goofy. Well now she is a few steps closer to the Olympics. Good run!
I had heard Holly Ochs was running third in the women's race even though the papers made no mention of her. Bueno!
Lots of runners for half. And lots of cheering and bell ringing from me. I can't wait for next year. We might have a block party or something.
I'll be headed to the dome to check out some more stuff. Later gators!

1 comment:

Stubby Holder said...

There is some great racing throughout the city, although finding out about races can be difficult.