Monday, October 29, 2007

2007 Boston Mayors Cup

This past Saturday was the 18th annual running of the Boston Athletic Association / Adidas Boston Mayor's Cup cross country races at Franklin Park in Boston. It was a perfect day for a cross country race as there was plenty of sun (slightly windy) and temperatures in the lower 50s. There were 782 finishers over 5 separate races (Boys 1.1 mile Girls 1.1 mile Open 5K Women's Championship 5K Men's Championship 8K).

This was the race I had been looking forward to since coming back to running one year ago. When there was a race I would think about over and over again in my mind, this was it. When I was out on a long run and daydreaming about racing in particular, I would think about the Mayors Cup. There is just something about running in a steady stream of about 200 or so of the top xc runners around, that gets the blood pumping slightly faster...Back in 1996, when I ran this race for the first time, I had a mediocre performance at 26:11 and was 111th place. A humbling experience to say the least. This year, I ran even slower than that (still on the comeback trail), but because the field wasn't exactly as deep as it was last time around, I placed much higher. This year, I came in at 26:25 for 74th place. I went out in 4:57 for Mile 1 and settled in with essentially the same group of runners for the rest of the way, picking a few off here and there, and surrendering places to others occasionally. The fun thing about this race is the fact that you have absolutely no idea where you are, place-wise, and you 'think' you are running far worse than you are, because there are so many people in front of you....what you have to realize though, is that this is probably the deepest field that most people will ever run against in a xc race... I had fun regardless of not breaking 26 minutes (my subconscious goal going into this week)... While my attempt at fielding an MVS team failed (thanks to no shows....err...um...Sully), it was nice to see Todd Lagimonier and Phil Cootey on the line with me. Both were coming back from extended time off and ran just for the experience...

In the Women's championship 5K, Salem's own Jennifer Toomey (Nike) finished 7th overall in 17:15 (5:32 pace). Fellow MVS members Melissa Donais was 21st in 18:05 (5:48 pace), Crystal Sineath was 41st in 18:52 (6:03 pace), and Maureen Forsyth was 69th in 19:54 (6:23 pace). The overall winner of the women's championship race was Ethiopian Aziza Ayilu, representing Westchester (New York) Track Club. Aziza also won the women's championship race last year. Results 5K Women's Photos

In the open 5K, Mike Toomey placed 19th in 16:56 (5:26 pace). Boston College's JV runners occupied spots 2,3,4,5,6,7,10,11. Results 5K Open Photos

The men's 8K championship was won by Ethiopians Girma Tola also representing Westchester (New York) Track Club. The winning time was 23:18 (4:43 pace). The top 6 spots were all under 24 minutes and last year's winner, Stephen Chemlany, was 14th this year in 24:38 (4:59 pace). It was Chemlany who narrowly edged American mile record holder Alan Webb last year for the win. Former UML alumns Brad Klinedinst (37th - 25:35 - 5:11 pace) and Kevin Alliette (52nd - 25:53 - 5:15 pace) had very good races respectively. Results 8K Men's Photos

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