Sunday, October 30, 2016

FLASH: Four (?) in Top 15 at MCM

On a morning better suited to spectating a marathon rather than running one, GRC piled at least four men into the top 15 at MCM. Temperatures remained in the 60's throughout the race, but the humidity wreaked havoc on the field in the latter stages.

Numerous eyewitness reports indicate that Jake Klim was in the lead pack through at least 18 miles. While race officials deny participating in a conspiracy to remove Jake from the runner tracking system, the e-mail thread released by WikiLeaks with the subject line "the fix is in" raises serious questions. Anyone with photographic evidence of Jake finishing is encouraged to come forward.

6 Jerry Greenlaw 2:33:14
8 Blake Taneff 2:33:52
10 Sean Barrett 2:34:02
14 Graham Tribble 2:36:34
76 Brian Young 2:55:10

Jake cruising around mile 14

Saturday, October 29, 2016

GRC Marine Corps Marathon Crew is Ready to Dominate

Coach Jerry previews the Marine Corps Marathon below!

Our crew is Sean Barrett, Jerry Outlaw, Blake, Graham, and Breezy. The marathon is an unpredictable event, and you never know who is going to show up ready for a big breakthrough, but I think Sean, Outlaw, Blake, and Graham all have an excellent chance to place in the top 10, and quite possibly in the top 5. If one of them has a really good day, it's well within the realm of possibility that a GRC athlete could get the win. A case could be made for each of our athletes as our leading contender. Sean is the clear sentimental favorite--not only is he an active duty Marine, he is deploying to Iraq next week, and it would be an amazing story if he were able to run well while facing the incredible pressure and stress of an imminent deployment to a war zone. Outlaw has trained exceptionally well for MCM, and has logged lots and lots of miles, and done many marathon-specific workouts. He is an expert tactician, and in his previous attempt at the distance, when he ran his PR of 2:26:50, he ran precisely even pace for the two halves of the race, and he will look to move up in the latter stages of the race on Sunday. Graham's training was going extremely before a recent hiccup, and he's fully rested and feeling good. At his best, Graham is a formidable marathoner, and he is in PR shape. Blake is an intriguing newcomer to the marathon who has run very fast at shorter distances (29:12 track 10,000), and while he lacks experience, he is a dogged competitor who has run some outstanding workouts in recent weeks. Breezy could be critical to our attempt to win the team competition, in which the top 3 score. Because Sean is running for the Marine Corps team, if one of our top 3 struggles, Breezy will be the safety valve, and he is taking that responsibility seriously, and will give it everything he has.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

October 22 Weekend Update (better late than never....)

Coach Jerry Alexander describes the light weekend of Pacers Running// GRC New Balance domination below:


We had some strong off-road performances this weekend. Stewart and Steph took on the immense challenge that is the Spook Hill Cider and Wine 4 Mile Run, which is run on a combination of grass, trails, and roads, and despite the amazingly high level of competition, they came in first and second. Stewart not only got the win in 20:19, he caused the lead biker to retire a mile in for inability to keep pace. Steph was a strong second in 22:38, which was faster than the previous course record for men. I don't want to make any wild predictions, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that those two spunky kids have some more victories in their future. Balmer is putting in some time in the home office in Portland for his Congressman, and he placed 5th in the Stumptown XC Race # 3, a 4 miler on rugged terrain, where he ran a very solid 21:45 despite taking a nasty spill. Paul will have another shot on the same course in two weeks at the Oregon USATF championship, and he's looking to stay vertical the next time out.

Additionally, many GRCers did a solid workout at the cell tower field on Saturday rather than racing and they had a special visit from one of GRC's first babies!

Monday, October 24, 2016

FLASH: Klim alleges "irregularities" in MCM runner tracking system, hints he will not accept results!

Breuters Wire Services - Washington, D.C.

A fall marathon season that has been marred by lurid scandals and vicious personal attacks on American distance running hero Meb Keflezighi (among others) sank to a new low last night when Marine Corps Marathon race contestant Jake Klim took to twitter at 3:15 a.m. to fire off a rambling missive in which he alleged that the race's scoring system was "rigged" against him and vowed to accept the race results "only if I win." In a thinly veiled attempt to shape the narrative in the event that he turns in a poor performance this weekend, Klim (seen below) spewed the following:

"My goal during this marathon campaign has been to challenge the running elite and the fat cats in Washington. Unfortunately, powerful forces in the mainstream media and running establishment are conspiring to ensure that I do not take my rightful place as the champion of the Marine Corps Marathon. If my name does not appear in the MCM race results this weekend, it can only be because the runner tracking system is rigged against me. Rest assured that I will be out on the course this weekend making the GRC great with every step I take and that I will accept the race results without hesitation or qualification, if I WIN!"

Klim added that, no matter the result, he would continue his quest in the Fall of 2017. Stay tuned to this blog for updates on this sad chapter in our nation's history.

No crickets chirping when McKay runs by

Dave McKay ran 3:57:12 to break the course record at the Patapsco Valley 50k on Saturday by more than a half hour. He a lead of almost 10 minutes over the previous course record holder.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Gettysburg Cross Country Invitational

Many of the Pacers//GRC New Balance guys continued cross county success at the Gettysburg Invitational (8k) on Saturday. Michael Palmisano lead the team in 25:49 for a second place finish in his first D-III cross country race. Kyle Wagener ran a 26:19 for 8th, less than 5 seconds off his time from Paul Short a few weeks ago on a tougher, slower course.  Luk Olenginski finished 16th in a time of 26:29 and Greg Olenginski finished 18th in 26:34, both running faster than last year on this course. David McKay ran a solid 26:35 for 19th.  Dave Wertz improved almost 20 seconds from last year in 26:46, finishing 21st, which is especially impressive given he is almost double the age of the majority of the field.  And Sean O’Leary finished 22nd in a time of 26:48, only 2 seconds off his time from last year.  This team utilized some good pack running and managed to beat all but one of the 25 other teams.   

2. Michael Palmisano 25:49
8. Kyle Wagener 26:19
16. Luk Olenginski 26:29
18. Greg Olenginski 26:34
19. David McKay 26:35
21. Dave Wertz 26:46

22. Sean O’Leary 26:48

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Army Ten Miler & Chicago Marathon

Coach Jerry captured the excellent Pacers GRC//New Balance racing weekend so here it is below.  Keep scrolling for some random pictures from the weekend.  And thank you to George Banker, for making the Army Ten Miler such a great race, to Charlie for hosting a post-ATM gathering, and to Dickson for bringing his adorable son Henry for us to meet at the gathering.  Finally, here is a link to a video of Stephanie breaking the tape in her Army Ten Miler victory, so proud!


The highly coveted but rarely awarded GRC Athlete of the Week goes to Steph for her stupendous accomplishment of winning the Army 10 Mile, in a humongous PR of 56:21. Not only did Steph break the club record, she destroyed it by almost 90 seconds. To put into context just how fast Steph ran, her 5 mile split would have put her third on the all-time list for that distance. And to make Steph's run that much more impressive, it was a slow day out there due to very strong winds, and while it's impossible to know for sure how much the wind affected the times, its not stretch to say that Steph would have broken 56 in better weather. What we know for certain is that Steph ran an amazing race, and notched the most impressive road win in the history of GRC women's team. Steph was not the only Reich to run an outstanding race at Army, as Stewart made an impressive 10 mile debut in 51:15, which put him in 11th place in a very competitive field.  That performance caps off an impressive week for Stewart, who ran extremely well in the Navy mile, and showed his range by hanging tough yesterday at a distance that is outside of his comfort zone. We're going to see much, much more from those plucky Reichs this fall, and the best is yet to come.

We also had many excellent non-Reich performances at Army. On the women's side, Kerry ran a very strong 59:34 for 4th place as she tunes up for an inevitable massive marathon PR in New York. We dominated the women's team competition, placing all 5 scorers in the top 20, with Maura in 11th in 61:47, Frances L in 12th in 61:56, and Julie in 17th in 63:14. I was also very pleased with Hannah's 63:42 for 21st, which is an extremely promising race for her after an extended injury-induced absence.  On the men's side, the team competition was a tad tougher given the presence of the Army's squad of Olympians, but we still managed to put 7 men in the top 31, with Carlos running a very controlled 52:04 for 15th, Daniel, who was slowed by an ill-timed pit stop, in 52:29 for 19th, Phil in 52:51 for 26th, Sean B and Blake tuning up for MCM in 53:09 for 29th and 53:18 for 30th, and Balmer in 53:23 for 31st. Tom ran a nice PR of 54:12 for 39th, and Charlie ran a solid 55:05 for 61st.

We had a big day in Chicago, led by Pat K's excellent 2:30:08, which made him the 3rd master, and first in the 45-49 age group.  It's hard to overstate how impressive it is that Pat was a few steps shy of breaking 2:30 at age 45, and he once again proved that there's still some fight in that old dog. Zak ran 2:35:17, and was negatively affected by stomach issues in the second half of the race which precluded him from running the big PR he was ready for.  Finally, Chris ran 2:36:31, a PR of more than 6 minutes.  I was extremely pleased with the training cycles from Zak and Chris, and both of them will be real threats to break 2:30 next time out.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Preview: Army Ten Miler

We will have a strong team on both sides at the 32nd annual Army Ten Miler on Sunday October, 9th.  Both the men’s and women’s teams won the open team category last year and are coming back to defend team titles.  

Paul Balmer, Charlie Ban, Sean Barrett, Matt Hassett, Carlos Jamieson, Tom Kelly, Stewart Reich, Phil Royer, Daniel Samet, and Blake Taneff will all make up the men’s team.  And Kerry Allen, Maura Carroll, Amy Hemenway Nichols, Frances Loeb, Steph Reich, Hannah Rowe, and Julie Tarallo will be the women’s team. 

Coach Jerry Alexander feels confident that the crew is ready to race: “We sharpened up with some relatively fast 800s on Wednesday, and we’re feeling good about our fitness.  If the weather cooperates, we should see a slew of PRs, and some movement on the GRC all-time top 5 list.  And even if the weather doesn’t cooperate, we’ll give it our best shot.”

Across the board our team members seem excited about the race.  Julie Tarallo captured the energy of the race best: “I always love the Army atmosphere.  Just when you start to hurt, you’ll pass by a wounded warrior with their head up and a smile on their face.  A tight calf or side stitch seem pretty trivial in comparison!”

Additionally, we are very proud to have two Pacers//GRC New Balance active duty teammates competing in this year’s Army Ten Miler.  Blake Taneff is a medical student in the Army at the Armed Services University and Sean Barrett is active duty in the Marine Corps.  We’re inspired by their sacrifices and by their dedication to our team and running despite deployments and busy military lives.  They will both be using the Army Ten Miler as an opportunity to get a good effort in for the upcoming Marine Corps Marathon.

Finally, we want to thank George Banker, the ATM Operations Manager for putting on the race and helping us enter our team in the elite section!

Pacers//GRC New Balance runners getting one last workout in Wednesday on the mall before the Army Ten Miler