INDIANAPOLIS – U.S. Olympians Matt Tegenkamp
and Janet Cherobon-Bawcom
used their speed to outlast their respective fields Thursday morning, as Cherobon-Bawcom won her third USA Running Circuit title of the season, while Tegenkamp grabbed his first win at the USA 10 km Championships in Atlanta, Georgia, hosted by the Peachtree Road Race.
The USA 10 km Championships are the seventh stop on the USA Running Circuit, which will conclude this fall with the .US National Road Racing Championships on November 17 in historic Alexandria, Virginia. The top ten finishers at each race on the circuit qualify to compete in the .US National Road Racing Championships. More information on the season-ending race is available at www.NationalRoadRacingChampionships.US
A tight early pack led to an exciting finish in the men’s race. Shadrack Biwott
led the field out in 4:41. Between the second and the third mile, Olympian Abdi Abdirahman
took the lead and started the string out the pack every so slightly, as fellow Olympian ran on his shoulder. Crossing the half way point, Abdirahman led, followed in step by Tegenkamp, Biwott, Bobby Curtis
and Olympian Meb Keflezighi
Heading into the final two miles of the race, Abdirahman and Tegenkamp slightly separated from the field, establishing themselves as the clear favorites as the finish line approached. With a mile to go Tegenkamp gapped Abdirahman by ten meters, pressing the pace and running this his first USARC title of the season, crossing the line in 28:24. Abdirahman finished second in 28:30.
Biwott finished strong, placing third in 28:35, showing he’ll be a top contender in any race the rest of the season, while Curtis finished fourth in 28:42 and USA Half Marathon Championship runner-up Keflezighi finished fifth overall in 28:53.
Tegenkamp’s victory moved him from third overall in the USARC standing into first place, passing USA 25 km and Half Marathon Champion Mo Trafeh. Tegenkamp now leads with 35 points, while Trafeh is second with 33 points and Ben True sits third with 21 points.
In the women’s race, Cherobon-Bawcom ran her usual USARC race strategy, going to the front and pressing the pace early, this time establishing a solid lead by the third mile after taking out the first mile in 5:22 and hitting the two mile mark in 10:05.
Passing the four mile mark in 21:20, Cherobon-Bawcom led by 90 meters, as Stephanie Rothstein-Bruce
, Mattie Suver
and Maegan Krifchin
led the chase pack.
Heading into the final mile, it was clear Cherobon-Bawcom was well on her way to her third USARC title of the season, as she raised her arms in victory as she crossed the tape in 32:45. While Cherobon-Bawcom’s performance was quite impressive, runner-up Rothstein-Bruce ran exceptionally well over the final two miles, finishing ten seconds off Cherobon-Bawcom and well ahead of Suver and Krifchin, with a time of 32:55.
In the fight for third, Suver and Krifchin battled all the way to the line, with Krifchin pulling ahead ever so slightly, as both athletes finished with a same time of 33:22. Krifchin is coming on strong as the 2013 USARC season presses on, while Suver has been a model of consistency in every race she’s run.
rounded out the top five, as she crossed the finish line in 33:29, while 2013 USA Half Marathon champion Adriana Nelson
finished sixth in 33:52.
In the USARC standings, Cherobon-Bawcom is in a comfortable lead with 45 points, while Suver sits solely in second place with 35 points, while Rothstein-Bruce bumps past Brianna Nelson with 29 points.
About the USARC
The USARC is a USA Track & Field road series featuring USA championships from one mile through the marathon and consistently attracts the best American distance runners with more than $500,000 to be awarded in total prize money. A total of $60,000 in prize money was awarded at the USA 10 km Championships.
The first ten U.S. runners earn points at each USARC race (15 for first, 12 for second, 10 for third, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1), with those earning the most points receiving prize money at the end of the series.
The mission of the USARC is to showcase, support and promote U.S. runners. Since its inception in 1995, the USARC and its races have provided over $7 million to U.S. distance runners.
Contributed by Scott Bush