Thursday, December 23, 2010

What the hell just happened? 2010 with the GRC team

A lot of few runners showed up this year, and a lot happened to everyone, except Towpath, unless you count getting action like he'd never seen before as "a lot." We gained Dave Burnham, Jimmy Daly, Matt O'Brien, Chuck Kacsur, Ian Hankins, Scott Koonce, Jordan Snyder, Paul Guevara, Jerry Greenlaw, Ryan Hason, Sam Luff. We lost Chris Sloane, Dylan Keith and Jake Klim (for the summer and fall).

Here's a little bit of what transpired:

Love, and snow, is in the air- JARRIN marries Pilar soon after buying the ultimate party house.
Soon they begin plans for planning and subsequently welcoming a baby.

That took some snowballs- Karl Dusen runs 8:31 for an indoor 3k and followed it up two
weeks later by dominating the Al Lewis 10 miler in a blizzard, winning by 80 seconds. He later appeared in the pilot for an ambush interview series. Various networks pass on it. His plans to start procreating wreck havoc with our GRC women's team, one-third of which was his wife, Emily. Meanwhile, a vicious storm belts the Washington metro area, dumping more snow than the municipalities are equipped to handle. A four-and-a-half-day federal government closure causes many other employers to follow suit, and that leaves many GRC runners with ample time to train, albeit in the snow.

Korean superstar- Chris Bain wins MCRRC Athlete of the Year.

Skinny Jesus- Jake Marren had his way with some great marathon pace workouts. Later proposes to Ella, who accepts. Then he batters Charlie about the head and face.

Flying Dutchman- Dirk De Heer EASILY put together the best single month on the team this March, with a win at the Van Metre Five Mile in Ashburn, which also featured a PR for Jake Klim. He followed it up with a third at the St. Patrick's Day 8k and a 5th in 1:07:37 at the National Half Marathon with the wind in his face.

Because they wanted to get out of Baltimore before VD catches them- Klim, Murphy and Hughes posted some fast 5k times at the Shamrock 5k.

Earning his tenders- Andy Sovonick runs 15:45 for 5k at the University of Maryland Invitational and later qualifies for world duathlon championships.

The Spring of Klim- The Red Fox continued his tear through the racing circuit, finishing ahead of some kid named Outlaw who forgot a watch at the Cherry Blossom race, lowering his 5k PR to 14:46, and leading the team at the Shamrock 5k, Cherry Blossom, Pike's Peek and the Broad Street Run.

More blossom facts- Sam Blasiak and Kyle Smits showed up for Cherry Blossom, and did they! As did alumni Patrick Reaves and Billy Askey.
Despite losing the team title to PR Running, the GRC demonstrated staggering depth
in the team competition:
PR #1: 49:04
PR #2: 50:52
GRC #1: 50:56
GRC #2: 52:54
GRC #3: 52:54
GRC #4: 53:40
GRC #5: 54:06
GRC #6: 54:16
GRC #7: 54:21
GRC #8: 54:24
GRC #9: 54:46
GRC #10: 55:33
PR #3: 56:01
GRC #11: 57:20
GRC #12: 57:55
GRC #13: 59:44
GRC #14: 1:02:29
GRC #15: 1:03:11
GRC #16: 1:04:25
GRC #17: 1:07:19
PR #4: 1:07:22

Chris Sloane admits he's not tough enough to handle running with the GRC, bolts for some other team. Claims "it will be unfortunate for the GRC." Later moves in with Wiggy and learns to sleep with one eye open, learns just how unfortunate it would be for him...

I guess all the biking is good for something- Matias runs a big marathon PR at Boston- 2:34:40 for 117th overall. That performance gives him the confidence to propose to Katie Davison, who accepts. Matt Ernst PRs.

Early Chicago dress rehearsal, right down to the meltdown-Everyone who races on May 2, be it at the Broad Street Run, Pittsburgh Half Marathon or Frederick Half Marathon
has a miserable race. In Frederick, HUGE hallucinates that Shalane Flanagan encourages him to finish his race. Turns out it's now-Hansons runner Molly Printz, who vaguely resembles Flanagan. Mrs. Wiegner, a native of Hopwood, Penn., makes dinner for the Broad Street GRC crew, which is reportedly delicious. JARRIN and Pilar run the blisteringly hot New Jersey Marathon, suffer heinous sunburn.

Bye, Dustin- Dylan Keith heads across the country to grad school in California. He'd be back with us for Chicago, though.
Meanwhile, Towpath gets his own place, and proceeds to get more Tang than an astronaut.

Sharp dressed men?- Any hope for a team dress code went out the window with Scott Koonce joined the GRC team.

A Lawyers Have Heart 10k race volunteer gives Charlie Ban a sleeveless t-shirt that says only RUN, which he -- like a six-year-old -- wears everywhere from then on.

Chuck wrecks himself- Most likely a result of not checking himself, Chuck "Big City" Kacsur suffers a freak accident that takes him out of training for a while, but not before running a 1:56 800m first race.

Dog things happy for him- Dave Burnham wins the Crossroads 17.75k in 1:03:37. The local newspaper reported that his wife, Sarah, was the third woman across the line in one hour and 21.05 seconds. You get what you pay for with newsroom budget cuts.
"The hills in the second half hurt a lot," David said. "I didn't know what to expect. I've never been out there a lot."

Didn't stop for cupcakes- Wiggy runs 24:52, in weather so hot it makes you wish you put deodorant on your private parts, to win the 2nd GRC Father's Day 8k. He finishes ahead of 194 other runners. Georgetown Cupcake, Skinny Water, Bethesda Bagel and Whole Foods Market provide refreshments.
The Champ
Chris Raabe returns to Grandma's Marathon and runs 2:17:43. His 2:15 win at the same race (by three minutes) in 2009 made him Let's's number 10 marathoner of the year.

"If too many people know your name, change it. Then change it again."- Puff Daddy- A Texan via the University of Alabama, Paul Guevara, wanders up to the store and winds up on the team a few weekends later.

Crisis of Pauls- Dirk's buddy, Dutch Paul, joins us for the summer. Patrick Murphy asks why he, Reaves, Hughes and Murray don't get nicknames based on their origin. People respond by giving Texas Paul a new nickname but not answering the question.

We're Friggin' Melting- Heat and humidity prey on the DC area in July, sparing few racers. Twilight yields no shelter from the heat and fewer sexy vampires at the annual Rockville 8k. Ban runs a 5k at 8pm that registers 98 degrees. The next day MCRRC officials cancel the race portion of Riley's Rumble and turn the race into a trick-or-treat morning run.
Long distance dominates August- Dickson Mercer finishes third at the Leesburg 20k in a
time that would be worth about 1:11 for a half marathon. He later writes a preview for a half marathon near his newspaper office after running the course, a thought that leaves his editors incredulous. Michigan Paul runs 52:52 for 37th at the USA Ten Mile Championships.

Driving rain makes me wet-Dusen leads team at the Parks Half Marathon in a deluge that puts large stretches of the course under water. Muskingum 10k ace Ian Hankins makes his GRC race team debut.

Goodbye, Sleep- Karl and Emily Dusen welcome their daughter Lily to their home, forcing Wiggy to find somewhere else to live.

Philadelphia Cheeseballs- In a sweaty foreshadowing, Mike Cotterell thrives in the muggy, uncomfortable Philadelphia Distance Run, setting a half marathon PR in 1:16:25, while Outlaw makes his GRC debut. The real Shalagne Flanagan yells at Wiggy to get out of her way. This is not his month.

Running along traffic was fun- Wilson Komen finishes sixth in the inaugural Wilson Bridge Half Marathon, with Jordan Snyder finishing as third master.

Twin Cities Triumph- Minneapolis-St. Paul Paul blazes his first marathon, finishing 17th in 2:21:54. The race also served as the national marathon championship.

Milk was a bad choice- The GRC Chicago Marathon team, whittled down through attrition in the preceding months, generally had an off day, with Mike Cotterell's steady running to a 10-minute PR being the pleasant deviation.
The warm start and brutally exposed last 11 miles were rough on everyone- all of the American men who met the Olympic Trials standard had previously qualified. Former local-ish runner Tim Young, of Fredricksburg, missed the standard by one second. Dozens of elite runners drop out in the closing miles. The temperature was nothing like the great disaster in 2007, but the dramatic difference between running in the shade and the heat took its toll on many. Hughes managed a decent debut and Murphy salvaged a satisfactory race.
Doubling Marathons was a bad choice- Ban loses interest in running, body temperature, one mile from the Marine Corps Marathon finish line. Ian Hankins runs a ridiculous first 10 miles, Dave Burnham moves up to lead the team and Jimmy Daly kicks it in for a strong finish.

Jurisprudential Doctor Jerry- Jerry Alexander begins coaching many members of the
GRC race team, lending years of coaching experience on the university and post-collegiate levels to helping refine our training practices.

Big Apple, lanky Kenyan- Wilson runs 2:26 in New York.

New web profiles- Jimmy is writing them for you guys, so if you haven't yet, send him your photo and profile text so he can get the ball rolling. Get your act together and you head in the game.

Yeah, Like Nobody Saw That Coming- Shannon O'Neill proves her distance-nut bona fides by running the Stone 50 miler, Bain, who ran the Athens (Greece) Marathon a few weeks after Chicago, rewards her by proposing marriage.
What are you doing here, Ryan? How old did you think this girl was?- Ryan Hanson, host of To Catch a Predator, join the team from Allegheny College. He soon wins the Pittsburgh YMCA turkey trot in sideways freezing rain. Outlaw moves to Maryland and starts racing with us.
Wake up in the morning feeling like L. Diddy- Sam Luff joins the team after years of running in the bitter cold for Cornell University.
Wiggy Runs Wild- Joey Wiegner made the roads his plaything starting in October, recording PRs in the 5k and several in the 10k.

Prodigal son- Alex Eversmeyer shows up at nationals. His last race with the team? The USATF Open Cross Country Championships in February 2009.

This is for all those kittens- Four GRC men finish ahead of Pacer Bert Rodriguez at the USATF Club Cross Country Championships in Charlotte. The team finishes 14th out of 45 teams, improving on last year's 19th place finish in a smaller field. None of the scoring runners from last year's team were among our top five this year, for varying reasons. Few, if any, runners prepared for the race beyond a nominal workout in spikes.

Jingle all the the bank- Wilson Komen, Dickson Mercer, Jimmy Daly and Hillary Cairns win the team title at the big December 10k in DC.


Matias said...

Awesomeness. This may break the record for most liked post.

Peter said...

This is like a better written version of a Klim recap, with fewer references to "Black" Jack Pershing and Daniel Boone.

Nice work Charlie!

Charlie Ban said...

Thank you, I'm doing what I can to get a peaceable group out from the military-industrial-historical complex.

Big City said...

great trip down memory lane! instant classic!

KLIM said...

Great stuff. That takes a lot of work to write/format all that. Good year.

Here's to 2011.

Peter said...

I'm telling you, this is EASILY one of funniest posts ever.

KLIM said...

And while on the topic of 2010, what do you think are some of the races (or performances) of the year for GRC? I think this will be the next poll question. Some suggestions:

- Wiggy's 8k PR and at FD8K in hellish conditions...which he ran solo
- Raabe's 2:17 at Grandma's...after not running for a week before the race (fact check needed)
- Minnesota Paul's 2:21 debut
- Mike Cotterell's 13.1 and 26.2 PRs on non-ideal race days

Other suggestions?

Matias said...

Dirk De Heer taking down the mighty Demesse Tefera at Van Metre 5M

Andy said...

Matias beat me to it, but let me add Dirk's National Half Marathon, his first half and ran alone most of the way through.

Charlie Ban said...

In no particular order:
A. Dirk's National Half
2. Predator's USATF XC
#. Wiggy's Kentlands 5k
Also, Cotterell's Philly/Chicago heat double
( ) Tex's Twin Cities
But don't forgot the time I held my breath for 3:10 in Scott's pool

Snizow said...

EPIC post! Best I've ever read on this blog. Easily!