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Top Distance Talent Ready to Race at the USATF 25 km Championships

5/10/2019
 

GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan – Well-balanced fields should lead exciting finishes at the USATF 25 km Championships Saturday morning in Grand Rapids, Michigan, as numerous USATF Running Circuit veterans line-up with an eye on victory.

 

The USATF 25 km Championships, hosted by the Amway River Bank Run, are the fifth stop on the 2019 USATF Running Circuit. Race videos, results, post-race interviews and photos will be available shortly after the race in cooperation with RunnerSpace.com. Join the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #USARC.

 

Leading the charge on the men’s side is Parker Stinson. Having finished ninth at the United Airlines NYC Half in March and third at the 2017 USATF 25 km Championships, Stinson is clearly in fine form and will be able to tap into experience on the Grand Rapids course.

 

The top two returnees from 2018, Tyler McCandless and Kiya Dandena are also capable of winning Saturday. McCandless placed fourth in Grand Rapids last year, while finishing 11th in March at the LA Marathon.

 

For Dandena, he hopes to improve upon his sixth place finish in 2018. He placed 12th at the USATF 15 km Championships earlier this season, as well as a ninth place finish at the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run last month.

 

Michael Iacofano is another runner entered in Saturday’s event coming off of a fine finish. Iacofano earned an impressive tenth place finish last weekend at the USATF Half Marathon Championships in Pittsburgh.

 

Other top contenders include 2018 Boston Marathon sixth place finisher Scott Smith, two-time top ten USATF 25 km Championships finisher Will Nation, Johnny Crain, who placed tenth in 2017, Andy Wacker, who earned seventh in Grand Rapids in 2016 and finished 13th at the Lilac Bloomsday Run last weekend, as well as road race veteran Mike Morgan.

 

On the women’s side, Lindsey Scherf and Dot McMahan are two former USATF 25 km champions entered in Saturday’s contest. Scherf has three top two finishes, including a win in 2015. She’s coming off a 16th place showing last weekend at the Lilac Bloomsday Run.

 

McMahan, 42, has six top five finishes in Grand Rapids, including a victory in 2013. While the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project runner isn’t considered a pre-race favorite, her success over the 25 km distance cannot be overlooked.

 

Entering Saturday’s race, Sara Hall, despite having never won in Grand Rapids, has to be considered the pre-race favorite. The USATF Running Circuit veteran finished second at the USATF Half Marathon Championships last weekend and currently sits fourth overall in the USATF Running Circuit with 18 points, only 7.5 points behind standings leader Stephanie Bruce. Hall placed second at the USATF 25 km Championships in 2015.

 

Kelsey Bruce is another experienced USATF 25 km runner, taking home seventh place last year, while earning a sixth place finish in 2016. Bruce finished sixth at the Chevron Houston Marathon back in January and has since had strong races both on the roads and the track.

 

Two other key runners to watch are Molly Grabill and Maddie Van Beek. Last week, Grabill finished 10th at the Lilac Bloomsday Run, showing fantastic fitness in one of the premier road race events in the United States.

 

Similarly, Van Beek is in fine form, having earned points in the USATF Running Circuit with a seventh place finish at the USATF 1 Mile Road Championships last month. She also has experience in Grand Rapids, with a sixth place finish in 2017.

 

Three other veterans of the course in Grand Rapids are entered and capable of top five finishes. Katie Matthews, who placed fourth in 2017, is back and ready to race. As is Allison Cleaver, who owns an eighth place finish in 2018 and fifth place in 2015, as well as Jennifer Bergman, who placed seventh in 2016.

 

About the USATF Running Circuit

 

The USATF Running Circuit is a USATF road series featuring USATF 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 $30,200 in prize money will be awarded at the USATF 25 km Championships.

 

The first ten U.S. runners earn points at each USATF Running Circuit race. For the USATF 25 km Championships, scoring is set as 30 for first, 24 for second, 20 for third, 14, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4 and 2, with those earning the most points receiving prize money at the end of the series.

 

The mission of the USATF Running Circuit is to showcase, support and promote U.S. runners. Since its inception in 1995, the USATF Running Circuit and its races have provided over $7 million to U.S. distance runners.

 

Contributed by Scott Bush




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