Running USA wire #23-03-04

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    Wire 23, March 28, 2004

    In this edition of the Running USA wire:

    1) Keflezighi Repeats as USA 8K Champion; Sets USA Championship Record

    2) Ochichi Sets World 5K Record at Carlsbad; Berhanu Defends Men’s Title

    Team Running USA sponsored by Nike

    Supported by grants from the New York Road Runners and Atlanta Track

    Club

    Copyright © 2004 Running USA

    All Rights Reserved

    *********************************************

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Keflezighi Repeats as USA 8K Champion; Sets USA Championship Record

    By Jim Gerweck, Running USA wire

    NEW YORK – (March 27, 2004) – Just call Meb Keflezighi the master of USA

    Road

    Championships. The man who won three road titles last year (8, 15 and 20

    kilometers) has duplicated two thirds of that success in 2004, defending

    his USA

    8K title in Central Park in course and national championship record time

    under

    near-perfect racing conditions on Saturday.

    The win comes two weeks after his USA 15K Championship four-peat at the

    Gate

    River Run in Florida, and less than two months after finishing second at

    the

    U.S. Men’s Olympic Marathon Trials in Alabama. Keflezighi, 28, ran the

    fastest

    8K of the year in 22:16 on roads still damp from overnight drizzle but

    with

    the warmest conditions (temperatures in the low 50s) the race has

    enjoyed in its

    three year history. That broke Tim Broe’s course record, set at the

    inaugural

    running in 2002, by 10 seconds and earned Keflezighi a $1000 bonus to go

    with

    his $5000 first place prize. In addition, the Mammoth Lakes, Calif.

    resident

    grabbed the $500 prime for being first to the 5K split, reached in 14:04.

    “In a USA Championship, you run first to win, and not worry about the

    time,”

    said Keflezighi who also won three U.S. road titles in 2002. “But about

    200

    meters from the finish people were yelling that I could get the record,

    and I

    would have hated to not try and miss it by a second.”

    The Team Running USA athlete’s time is the fourth fastest ever run by an

    American, and was 12 seconds better than his winning mark here last year.

    The fast times were engendered by the weather and Anthony Famiglietti,

    who

    was third at the first edition of the race but missed last year due to

    an injury

    incurred in his primary event, the steeplechase. Famiglietti who lives

    in

    Knoxville, Tenn. often visits his girlfriend who lives in Manhattan and

    does

    frequent training in the park, and in this case familiarity with the

    course

    brought success.

    “When I saw the first mile split (4:38) I wasn’t worried because I knew

    we’d

    pick it up, especially with the great field that was running,” said the

    2002

    USA steeplechase champion.

    Famiglietti, along with Keflezighi and road race debutante Bolota

    Asmerom,

    really began cranking the second mile (9:03). Shortly thereafter, Abdi

    Abdirahman, who had chased fellow Olympian Keflezighi right to the line

    at Gate River,

    dropped out as a back injury suffered at last week’s World Cross Country

    Championships flared up.

    By three miles (13:35) only the trio of Famiglietti, Asmerom and

    Keflezighi

    were left, and the latter threw in a short surge to nab the prime. “I

    wasn’t

    thinking about it until 10 meters before,” he said.

    That seemed to settle the overall outcome, as Famiglietti dropped back

    (“I

    just wanted to settle in and react to the rest of the race,” he

    explained) but

    Asmerom pulled alongside near 6K, which seemed to give Keflezighi a jolt

    of

    adrenaline. “I was pretty much going all out, but that gave me a boost,”

    continued Keflezighi. “I have to credit both those guys for making the

    fast times.”

    That surge sealed the deal for Keflezighi, but Famiglietti regrouped and

    caught Asmerom in the final 400 to tie the old CR and provide a huge

    boost of

    confidence in his training. “I thought I was in great shape based on my

    workouts,

    but your first race back is still your first race, so you never know.”

    For Asmerom, his first major road race was an enjoyable experience. “It’s

    so

    much more fun than track,” he said. “You can kind of look around at the

    trees

    and the birds, just relax. It feels so natural.”

    Rounding out the top five, a hard charging Ryan Kirkpatrick nipped last

    year’s runner-up, Chad Johnson, by a second.

    “The third time was a charm,” said NYRR CEO Allan Steinfeld. “When you

    get

    fast people together under good conditions, you get a great race. And I

    can tell

    you, this definitely isn’t the last time we’ll do this.”

    As part of the 2004 USA Running Circuit, a USA Track & Field road racing

    series featuring USA Championships from 5K to the marathon, the top 10 U.S.

    runners earned valuable Circuit points at this national championship.

    With his win

    (worth 15 points), Keflezighi increased his USARC lead over Alan

    Culpepper and

    Dan Browne, 54 points to 30 and 20 points respectively.

    The 2004 USARC offers a record $818,700 in guaranteed prize money with a

    final $12,500 grand prix purse ($6000, $4000 and $2500) for the top

    three men and

    women point scorers overall. At each USARC race, the first ten US

    runners earn

    points (15 points for first, 12 for second, 10 for third, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3,

    2

    and 1), and Circuit points will be doubled at the USA Marathon

    Championships.

    The next Men’s USARC race is the Papa John’s 10 Miler on April 10 in

    Louisville,

    Ky.

    NYRR 8000: USA Men’s Championship

    New York, NY, Saturday, March 27, 2004

    1) Meb Keflezighi, 28, CA, 22:16*, $6500#

    2) Anthony Famiglietti, 25, TN 22:26, $4000

    3) Bolota Asmerom, 25, CA, 22:29, $3000

    4) Ryan Kirkpatrick, 25, CO, 22:32, $2000

    5) Chad Johnson, 27, OR, 22:33, $1250

    6) Mike Donnelly, 29 OR, 22:43, $1000

    7) Nick Rogers, 28, OR, 22:52, $800

    8) Nolan Swanson, 28, OR, 22:59, $700

    9) Pete Julian, 32, CO, 23:00, $600

    10) Justin Young, 24, CO, 23:04, $500

    11) Dave Davis, 25, OR, 23:12, $400

    12) Henry Dennis, 29, OH, 23:14, $300

    13) Jason Lehmkuhle, 26, MN, 23:16, $200

    14) Jason Balkman, 27, CA, 23:19, $150

    15) Luke Watson, 23, MN, 23:24, $100

    *USA Championship and Central Park Records

    #$1000 course record bonus and $500 5K prime

    For more results and information, go to the race website at:

    http://www.nyrrc.org/nyrr8000/index.php

    2004 USA Running Circuit Standings

    MEN after three races

    1) Meb Keflezighi, 28, Mth Lakes, CA 54

    2) Alan Culpepper, 31, Lafayette, CO 30

    3) Dan Browne, 28, Portland, OR 20

    4) Trent Briney, 25, Rochester Hills, MI 14

    5) Clint Verran, 28, Rochester Hills, MI 12

    Abdi Abdirahman, 27, Tucson, AZ 12

    Mike Donnelly, 29, Portland, OR 12

    Anthony Famiglietti, 25, Knoxville, TN 12

    9) Scott Larson, 34, Superior, CO 10

    Chris Graff, 28, Palo Alto, CA 10

    Bolota Asmerom, 25, San Leandro, CA 10

    2004 USARC Champions

    MEN

    Alan Culpepper 2:11:42 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, Birmingham, AL,

    Feb

    7

    Meb Keflezighi 43:18 Gate River Run 15K, Jacksonville, FL, March

    13

    Meb Keflezighi 22:16+ NYRR 8000/USA Men’s Championship, NY, NY,

    March 27

    +USA Championship Record

    Upcoming USARC Races:

    U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Women’s Marathon, St. Louis, MO, $250,000,

    April 3

    Papa John’s 10 Miler (men), Louisville, KY, $26,500, April 10

    # # #

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Ochichi Sets World 5K Record at Carlsbad

    Berhanu Repeats as Men’s Champion

    By Ryan Lamppa and Basil Honikman, Running USA wire

    CARLSBAD, Calif. – (March 28, 2004) – The Carlsbad 5000 is synonymous

    with

    great competition and world records and Sunday’s race, under warm,

    breezy

    conditions, was no exception as Kenya’s Isabella Ochichi set a world 5K

    road record

    in 14:53, while Ethiopia’s Dejene Berhanu repeated as men’s champion in

    13:23.

    With two current world champions and the 10,000 meter gold medalist from

    the

    1997 World Track Championships, the Women’s invitational promised to be

    one of

    the most competitive ever. As it turned out 2003 Carlsbad runner-up,

    Isabella

    Ochichi, 24, threw in an unanswerable surge at 1.5 miles and ran away

    from

    the field to a U.S. All-Comers and, for the present time, a new world 5

    kilometer world road record. Although Paula Radcliffe of Great Britain

    has run a 14:51

    on a certified course in London last September, said course needs

    remeasurement (which is scheduled for this April).

    A group of four including 2004 World Cross Country 4K champion Benita

    Johnson

    of Australia, Ochichi, 2004 World Indoor 3000 meter champion Meseret

    Defar

    and Sentayehu Ejigu of Ethiopia, established themselves at the front of

    the

    race. The lead women passed the first mile in 4:42 and then exchanged

    the lead for

    the next 800 meters. Then Ochichi, who ran 14:56 here last year, began

    to

    pull away. She reached the second mile in 9:25. Neither the uphill nor

    the

    headwinds had any effect on her pace. At that point she was about 9

    seconds ahead of

    Johnson who had about a 30 meter lead on Ejigu and Defar. About 400

    meters

    before turning onto the finish stretch on Carlsbad Village Drive,

    Ochichi seemed

    to be struggling but this proved to be an illusion as she gathered

    herself

    for a stretch drive to the victory. Johnson finished strongly, 14

    seconds behind

    in 15:07.

    Gracious in defeat, Johnson said, “I went out hard, but Isabella opened

    a gap

    on me at one and a half miles. I tried my hardest to catch her but she

    was

    too speedy for me today. All credit to her – I’ll be back next year.”

    “I didn’t know if a world record was possible today. I thought it would

    be

    too hot, but during the race I felt comfortable and knew that I had to

    run a

    fantastic race against Benita to win,” said Ochichi who won $15,000

    which

    includes a $10,000 world record bonus.

    In the men’s race, nobody wanted to take the pace so the entire men’s

    field

    of 11 hit the first mile in 4:17 and at the uphill second mile (4:26),

    nine men

    were still in the hunt including men’s defending champion Berhanu and

    Kenyans

    Raymond Yator, Boniface Songok and Boaz Cheboiywo. Around the 2.5 mile

    mark

    on Carlsbad Boulevard just before Beech Street, Berhanu surged, looked

    back at

    his competition and pulled away for good as he ran unchallenged to the

    tape in

    13:23 with Songok second 7 seconds back.

    “Today was about winning not about running fast, and I was happy when I

    broke

    away that nobody went with me,” said the soft-spoken Ethiopian.

    In the master’s races, Peter Magill of South Pasadena outkicked Brian

    Pope of

    Oxford, Miss., 14:51 to 14:52, while Monica Joyce of Pinckney, Mich. set

    a

    U.S. 45-49 age group record of 17:08 to handily win the women’s race

    over Dolly

    Ginter of nearby Irvine (17:54).

    19th Carlsbad 5000

    Carlsbad, CA, Sunday, March 28, 2004

    MEN

    1) Dejene Berhanu (ETH) 13:23 $5,000

    2) Boniface Songok (KEN)13:30 $3,500

    3) Raymond Yator (KEN) 13:31 $2,000

    4) Boaz Cheboiywo (KEN) 13:32 $1,000

    5) Barnabas Kosgei (KEN)13:32 $800

    6) Eliud Kirui (KEN) 13:40 $700

    7) Alejandro Suarez (MEX) 13:46 $500

    8) Cathal Lombard (IRL) 13:49 $400

    9) Alastair Stevenson (AUS) 14:01 $300

    10) Adrian Blincoe (NZL) 14:11 $200

    WOMEN

    1) Isabella Ochichi (KEN) 14:53* $15,000#

    2) Benita Johnson (AUS) 15:07 $3,500

    3) Meseret Defar (ETH) 15:23 $2,000

    4) Sentayehu Ejigu (ETH) 15:25 $1,000

    5) Eyerusalem Kuma (ETH) 15:37 $800

    6) Hayley McGregor (AUS) 15:38 $700

    7) Sally Barsosio (KEN) 15:58 $500

    8) Lucy Smith (CAN) 16:08 $400

    9) Natalie Harvey (GBR) 16:11 $300

    10) Sally Hauser (USA/CA) 16:22 $200

    11) Georgie Clarke (AUS) 16:34

    *world and U.S. all-comers record; previous record 14:54 by Deena

    Drossin

    (Carlsbad 2002) and Berhane Adere (Carlsbad 2003); Paula Radcliffe’s 14:51

    from

    Flora Light Women’s 5K is pending course validation (i.e., remeasurement)

    #includes $10,000 world record bonus

    MASTERS MEN (40+)

    1) Peter Magill (CA) 14:51 $1,000

    2) Brian Pope (MS) 14:52 $500

    3) Danny Martinez (CA) 14:54 $200

    MASTERS WOMEN (40+)

    1) Monica Joyce (MI) 17:08 $1,000

    2) Dolly Ginter (CA) 17:54 $500

    3) Ceci St. Geme (CA) 18:04 $200

    For complete results, go to:

    http://www.eliteracing.com

    # # #

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