Deena Kastor celebrated her 40th birthday earlier this year by recovering from her third place finish at the USA Cross Country Championships and in preparation for the Pasadena Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon. Against elite fields, she finished third in St. Louis and first in Pasadena. While not a typical birthday month for a 40 year old, she is making a strong statement that age is merely a number.
Twenty years after her first USA national championship (she placed runner-up at the 1993 USA Indoor Championships in Indianapolis), Kastor will toe the line Saturday as a member of Team USA in the women’s marathon at the 14th World Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Moscow, Russia. It is her fifth World Outdoor Track & Field Championships appearance and her first since 2007.
For the last two decades, Kastor has become a staple in women’s long distance running in the U.S. Her resume is a long list of accomplishments most only dream of. She has won an Olympic medal (bronze in the marathon at the 2004 Athens Games), she holds six American road racing records, twice she has finished runner-up at the World Cross Country Championships and has finished in the top ten at eight different major marathons, which has included wins at the London Marathon and Chicago Marathon. She holds the American record in the women’s marathon at 2:19:36, which she set in 2006. And she continues to compete at an elite level.
Earlier this year, one week before Kastor traveled to Poland as part of Team USA for the World Cross Country Championships, Kastor finished third in the Los Angeles Marathon. So far in 2013, she has raced two cross country races, two 10 km road races, three half marathons and one marathon.
Her one last order of business before traveling to Moscow for the World Outdoor Championships – being the top American finisher over the weekend at the Beach to Beacon 10 km in a time of 32:29, which was well under the listed age-group masters record for the 40-44 age group. Her next stop is Moscow and her first time as part of the women’s marathon after being a member of the team in the 10,000m in her previous four trips.
Be sure to follow Kastor in the women’s marathon along with full recaps from Team USA at the World Outdoor Championships on www.usatf.org.