On Thanksgiving Day Thom Trimble capped his impressive 2005 season with an stunning 5K victory over American Mile Record Holder Steve Scott at the San Diego Cares 5k. While Len Goldman my be the Striders version of the energizer bunny, Thom routinely displays the greatest racing range. In 2005 he recorded PA top ten masters finishes in both the short (7th) and long (4th) series in addition to fastest Strider masters times for the shortest and longest PA road races of the year (Davis mile in 4:48.9 and Clarksburg 30k in 1:53:18). On Thanksgiving Thom turned his attention to one of the greatest American distance runners in history.
The San Diego Cares 5K is a flat fast downtown San Diego waterfront course. In the first half mile Steve Scott jumped to an early 30 meter lead over Thom, not surprising considering a 13:30 5k on his resume in addition to his 3:48 mile PR. By the mile mark Thom’s legs had loosen up a bit after “feeling wobbly and a bit stiff after the previous days 12-hour drive (crawling thru LA at rush hour at 5-10 m.p.h.) not to mention a few late-night beers” and he cruised by Scott. Thom steadily stretched his lead until a quick 180 turn before the finish revealed Scott a full 150 meters behind. The result: A 16:45 5K, 1st place in the masters division, 10th overall (top 2 finishers sub 15 minutes) and 30 seconds in front Steve Scott.
“After the race I spoke with Steve Scott for a bit. Super nice guy, and he turns 50 soon. They interviewed him just prior to the gun going off, while I stood off his right shoulder…trying not to mug for the camera”… next year the roles may be reversed with Steve Scott trying to steal Thom Trimble’s TV time! (J. Lehman & UPI Wire Reports)
The Clarksburg Country Run for 2005 was actually four different runs this year. The addition of a half marathon and the return of the classic 20 miler gave this event a good kick in the pants as far as attendance was concerned. The later-starting 5K gave spectators something to watch while the other races dissappeared into the levees.
While the 30K attendance was down about 30% the runners in the other two races more than made up for it. The 20 Mile race started about 15 minutes before the 30K and half marathon, and did a short 1.5 mile loop before hitting the 30K start line. The half marathoners started later with the 30K runners. So, while the field size for the 30K was much lower, the “field density” was much improved. In past 30Ks the field would spread out and the run would get very lonely at times. However, with slower 20 mile runners to catch most of the way, and half marathoners who turned around at 6.5 miles, there were runners spread all over the place, from start to finish.
Perfect weather was also on hand for this race, with temperatures in the mid-50 to low 60s for much of the race, and almost no wind. Nine Striders completed the course, giving the club full Masters, Seniors and a drop-down open team. Thom Trimble, Jeff Teeters and Tim Keenan ran together for the first couple miles, with a second grouping of Striders – Mike Maguire, Craig Whichard and Joe Schieffer – not too far behind. Super-senior champ-to-be Len Goldman was biding his time further back, just needed to finish to claim his Grand Prix title. Ironman Julios Ratti and 67-year-old Ross Franco were the final two Striders in the field.
As the photos in the 30K album attest, the race was made much more interesting with all of the early-starting 20 milers, and return-trip half marathoners to pass. Thom, Tim and Jeff were hanging tough with Excelsior at the halfway point, all running just under 6:10 pace (57 minutes at halfway). Mike, Joe and Craig were about 2 minutes down, but still running in close proximity. Len was further back cursing the distance with every step.
Soon after the halfway point the Striders saw any chance of a team title slip away. Jeff, who had surged ahead at sub-6 pace on the outbound leg, was realizing his pacing error by the turnaround. Tim, who came into the race with a nagging knee problem, was starting to feel the pain. Both backed off to avoid more painful alternatives. Thom, on the other hand, took advantage of the lead woman (Chris Lundy) passing their pack and joined her for the return trip (thinking…”hey,this is one way to get my picture in CTRN!🙂 Thom picked up the pace and negative split each of the10Ks and finished as 6th master and 17th overall in 1:53:18.
Tim caught Jeff around mile 15 and the two ran in together to place 9th and 10th master in just over 1:58. With those placings Thom, Jeff and Tim earned top10 places in the year-end Long GP (4th, 6th and 7th respectively). A couple minutes later, but not quite under 2 hours, was Craig Whichard. This marked Craig’s first PA road race since the Memorial Day 10K.
Joe Shieffer ran a 2:01:22, nearly duplicating his time from 2004, to grab the 50-59 silver medal (90 seconds behind Lloyd Stephenson). Joe also secured second in the Senior Long GP behind Lloyd. Mike Maguire, who had not raced this long in 4 years, clocked a 2:04 after stopping to stretch at least once.
Len Goldman did what he needed to do and finished the race in 2:27 as 6th super senior, and win the 2005 Super Senior Long GP Title. He made it quite clear that this was NOT his favorite distance. This was the first road race that Len has not placed in the top 2 in his age group. Not too far behind was the third scoring senior for the club, Julios Ratti in 2:32. Ross Franco, whose time of 3:44 may not seem important, but it did allow the club to score an Open Men’s team with Mike and Craig. Likely a top-5 placing team at that!
The Strider’s Len Goldman became the National Champion at 10K for the 60-69 division by winning the Heritage Oaks Bank 10K in Paso Robles. Len, who has been winning most of the races he has entered finally earned his due! Not only did Len defeat all the other supers but he also topped his own club record with an amazing 38:44. That was 11 seconds off his previouis over-60 PR (set at HP this year), nearly a minute ahead of the next super senior, and over 2 minutes up on the next PAUSATF 60-plusser!
The masters men’s team placed third, but was lucky just to have a full team. Four Striders ran together for the first 5K loop – Thom Trimble, Jeff Teeters, Chatham Ross, and John Lehman, with 5th man Marcus Catlett through about 90 seconds back. Thom finally pulled away over the last mile to record a 34:55 (19th), with Jeff and Chatham 9 and 15 seconds back.
Joe Schieffer ran 6 minute miles to place 9th in the very deep seniors field, and 5th PA runner. Others running for the club included Malia Dinell as the lone Strider woman, Julios Ratti and Ross Franco.
The Open runners, while not participating in the National Championships, were treated to a most-unique race prize format. The race was called The Fifty-Buck 10K, and for good reason. Instead of giving all the prize money to the top finishers, which were generally out-of-towners (out-of-country actually) the prize money was RANDOMLY distributed to all finishers. Each third finishers was handed a fifty dollar bill! Not bad for just making it to the chute!