Monday, May 28, 2012

Jonaitis 1st, 4th at Ridge Runs

Best in show at the historic and beautiful Ridge Run 10K and 5K on Monday went to local elite runner Jeff Jonaitis, 31, of Tinley Park. Jonaitis won a very competitive 10K on the hilly layout in the Morgan Park-Beverly neighborhood on Chicago's South Side in 33:09 and followed up with a 16:03 in the 5K, good for fourth place in another very strong field. Second in the 10K was Ryan Giuliano, 27, of Schaumburg, with a 33:20. He then placed seventh in the 5K with a 17:02. How do these guys do it? Third in the 10K was Artur Bareikis, 25, of Oak Forest, with a 33:24. And how did he do in the 5K? He took third again with a 15:55! The women's 10K went to Lindsay Hattendorf, 28, of Crown Point, IN, with a 38:21. Second was taken by Helen Nuttall, 30, of Oak Park, in 43:10, and third was taken by Maggie Mulchrone, 23, of Chicago, in 43:18. Special kudos go to Charlie Kern, 42, of Elmhurst, who was th masters winner by a landslide with a 36:54. Moving onto the 5K, which included a lot of the 10K runners, Emil Bojanov, 27, of Chicago, took individual honors with a 15:38. Next across the finish line was Brian Hague, 27, of Chicago, in 15:51. Bareikis then took third in striking fashion with his 15:55. Women's 5K champion was Kathryn Hague, 24, of Chicago, in 18:24. Runner-up was Marianna Trejo, 22, of Chicago, in 19:58, and third went to Maggie O"Loughlin, 17, of Chicago, in 20:23. Total finishers with many repeaters were 831 in the 10K and 1.381 in the 5K.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Ptacek, Teunisse Win Soldier Field 10M

From everything I've seen and heard, the Fleet Feet Soldier Field 10 Miler was a rousing success this morning. Temperatures were in the 60s, which is great when you're running 10 miles in late May. The field was strong and huge. The CARA Runners' Choice Circuit race had 12,907 finishers according to the latest results. The overall finish came down to the wire with Todd Ptacek, 25, of Chicago, getting the official victory in 55:04. Finishing second in the same time was Brent Alexander, 31, of Chicago, and third was taken by Jack Kafel, 36, of Oak Park, in 55:44. The equally powerful women's field was led by Shannon Ring Teunisse, 29, of Belvidere, in 1:01:25. It was close for second and third as Columba Montes, 33, of Chicago, placed second in 1:01:33, and Kristen Heckert, 25, of Lisle, placed third in 1:01:48. I saw lots of nice photos and accounts on Facebook. I coudn't be there this year, but will run a low-key 10K tomorrow up in Door County, WI.

Tower Trot Does Annual Daily Double

The Western Springs Tower Trot has been around for a long time, and with all the races around, continues to be a special event for a lot of people. As it has been in recent years, it is set up so you can run both the 10K and 5K if you want in the "Double" category. In the 10K, Mark Holt, 19, of La Grange Heights, won in 34:36. He was followed in by Joel Schaefer, 45, of La Grange, in 37:12, and third place was taken by Chris Pusinelli, 19, of Chevy Chase, MD, in 37:44. The women's 10K was won by Samantha Kirkham, 36, of Hinsdale, in 40:42. Second went to Susan Duteau, 48, of Hinsdale, in 41:45, and third went to Erin Fort, 31, of Western Springs, in 43:27. The 5K was won by Mike Jansek, 21, of Western Springs, in 16:43. No. 2 went to David Ostendorf, 38, of Elmhurst, in 17:17, and third went to that same Mark Holt, winner of the 10K, who came back to run a 17:49. In the 5K women's race, Olympic marathon trials runner Kate DeProsperis, 33, of Downers Grove, won in 19:11. Runner-up was Megan Baganz, 35, of Naperville, in 19:20, and third was earned by Claire Costelloe, 16, of Naperville, in 20:26. The 5K had 816 finishers and the 10K had 311.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Sunday's Madison Marathon Canceled

Heat concerns based on forecasts that could put temperatures in the low 90s on Sunday have forced organizers of the Madison (WI) Marathon to cancel Sunday's race. The half-marathon will go on, and marathon registrants will be shifted to the 13.1. Here is a report from the Milwauke Journal Sentinel:
Because of concerns about hot weather, the Madison Marathon, scheduled for Sunday, was canceled, officials announced Friday.
The forecast predicts temperatures to increase dramatically to a danger zone level by 10 a.m. and extreme danger by noon. Temperatures are expected to reach 92.
Full marathon registrants will automatically be entered in the half marathon.
"This was an incredibly thought-out decision to make," said Madison Festivals Inc. President Rita Kelliher. "It's heart-breaking for all of us, and we understand the runners' investment of training, fees and travel expenses."
Race officials who made the decision included the race director, medical director, course director and the board of Madison Festivals. Madison Festivals is the nonprofit group that runs the Madison Marathon. The decision was made in accordance with American College of Sports Medicine guidelines.
"Based on race organizers' 2010 numbers, when high temperatures overwhelmed many runners and overtaxed the race's medical team and city emergency resources, only 1% would complete the marathon in Sunday's predicted heat," said race director Keith Peterson.
"Canceling the race before it starts has a safety advantage for the community because experience from mid-race cancellation shows many participants continue to run on the course after cancelltion. This makes it difficult to track and manage runners' specific medical problems, and it further taxes an already overloaded medical system."
Kelliher said full marathon registrants will automatically be entered into the half marathon. Full marathoners who choose to run the half will receive a full marathon medal at the finish line. Marathoners can get their marathon T-shirt at the Runners Expo at Monona Terrace (Friday, 4-7 p.m and Saturday 9 a.m.-6 p.m.) or have it mailed to them at their request postage-free.
Each full marathon entrant, regardless if he or she chooses to run in the half, will receive a $20 credit for the 2013 Madison Marathon, despite the event's "no-refund" policy. Runners will be contacted in June with further details.
In the half marathon, race officials cautioned runners who still plan to run on Sunday to slow their pace and take breaks in the shade and drink plenty of fluids. Six medical stations and eight water stations will be located on the course, along with medically trained personnel on bikes between stations.
The course will be open until 11:30 a.m.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Madison Marathon Might Be in Jeopardy

The Madison Marathon this Sunday (Wisconsin's state capital) faces a possible cancellation with the decision coming on Friday. Heat predicted to be in the high 80s is the problem. Coming a week after a controversial cancellation at Green Bay, this is a big deal. Tom Held, an excellent Badger-state blogger, goes into the story in detail at the following URL:

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Soldier Field 10M Close to Selling Out

So what's new today? Well, the Soldier Field 10-miler is down to fewer than 300 spots. If you want to run it, enter now. And the June 10 North Shore Half Marathon in Highland Park has announced fee increases, effective next Tuesday. Finally, there is a bit of a controversy in Green Bay over whether the marathon should have been stopped because of heat on Sunday. The Green Bay Press-Gazette even ran an editorial saying it was the right decision. I agree with the newspaper. If you feel like Googling, there are some interesting newspaper articles. Closer to home, hats off to Rockford's and Schaumburg's marathons for getting through the heat with no major problems that I know about.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Summer Sun for Spring Marathon, Half Marathon

It was heated competition, or perhaps survival, on Sunday at the Chicagloand Spring Marathon and Half Marathon in Schaumburg-Busse Woods. What a tough day it was, but Robert Friedman, 29, managed a 3:03:54.3 to win the marathon, and Laura Jortberg, 45, was leading woman in 3:30:52.1. Second and third men were Brian Hurlbut, 35, in 3:13:29.5, and Dennis Petrushkevich, 55 (that's right), in 3:16:245.3. Second and third females were Ashley Dick, 24, in 3:33:58.7, and Erin Asgedon, 30, in 1:27:08.3. There were 255 finishers on a very difficult day to run a marathon. In the half-marathon, not exactly an easy race, either, 892 finished with Lionel Montenegro, 23, winning in 1:18:21.6. Women's winner was Jennifer Sagat, 29, in 1:27:08.3.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Heat Stops Green Bay Marathon

On a very warm and humid Sunday morning with a race that began at 7 a.m., the following is posted on the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon Web site: Due to hot weather, the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon closed its course at 9:35AM. Those finishing after the course was closed will not receive an official finish time. More information will be posted to the website. Thank you for your understanding. David Tuwei, Coons Rapids, MN, won in 2:27.11, and Leah Thorvilson of Little Rock, AR, was the women's winner in 2:45:2. It is not clear right now how many people actually finished.

Season Starter 5K Ignores Oldies But Goodies

It was on CARA's Runners Choice Circuit, but Sunday's Seven Bridges Season Starter 5K in Woodridge bunched all of the runners age 65 and older in one age group for each gender. How can this happen? I have no idea. When I mentioned it to a race official, the person told me CARA knew about it and apparently it wasn't a problem. As an "oldie in training," I find it quite offensive. How would you like to be 90-year-old Frank Waldeck and get listed 20th out of 21 in the men's 65-99 category? The guy is 90 and beat 44 people. As I have told him personally, we will have a 90-94 age group for him at the Community Bank of Elmhurst 4 on the 4th. Plenty of other men and women in their 80s were mixed in with runners in the 60s and 70s in the results. That's bad. I know CARA will get it right in its standings (with the exception of 90-94), but it shouldn't happen like this, especially in a Circuit race. As for the race itself, it was a hot, humid day with a fairly tough course. Mark Wehrman, 25, of Chicago, led the way with a very impressive 15:49.5 on a layout that included some fairly soft chopped limestone for portions of miles two and three and a couple of hills. Michael Cauley, 31, of Bloomingdale, was second in 16:07.3, and Christian Escareno, 24, of Chicago, was third in 16:24.9. The women's race also was won in an impressive time, considering the conditions, as Kristen Heckert, 25, of Lisle, triumphed in 17:46.1. Runner-up was Kristin Frey, 28, of Schaumburg, known for some impressive stairclimbing, in 19:22.1. Third was amazing Angelica Guerrero, 50, of Chicago, in 19:30.1. There were 423 finishers in the 5K. The accompanying 10-mile, run in equally oppressive heat, was won by Patrick Dorgall, 31, of Glen Ellyn, in 55:14.1, and Stephanie Wagner, 38, of Lombard, in 1:10:57.9.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Races, More Races, and Then Some!

One look at this weekend's schedule on the Chicago-area running scene is incredible. Unofficially (I'm bound to miss one), I see 20 events, including the Chicagoland Spring Marathon & Half Marathon in Schaumburg and the Rockford Marathon. There are a bunch of 5Ks, including the Woodridge Spring Starter, which is on CARA's Runner's Choice Circuit. There is no way to give all of this weekend's races justice on this page. To get a look at where you can go to race, check the Chicago Athlete calendar on the right. If you're racing, where will you be?

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Lightning Cancels Quarryman

My heart goes out to organizers and those who wanted to run Saturday in the Quarryman Challenge. The 10-mile and 5K races in Lemont were cancelled by the Lemont police because of lightning. No further information is available as for a possible re-scheduling. (See comment below)

Lyons, Foley Take Magellan Half

It's hard to remember a weekend when there wasn't a half-marathon! Saturday meant it was time for the Magellan Development Challenge Spring Half Marathon along the lakefront. Generally good running weather, temperature-wise, brought out a nice field with Kevin Lyons, 27, of Evanston, and Emily Foley, 28, of Chicago, taking individual men's and women's honors. Lyons won it overall in 1:13:40, and Foley bested the women in 1:25:25. Runners-up were Rodee Schneider, 30, of Madison, WI, in 1:15:08, and Marron Burke, 32, of Chicago, on the women's side with a 1:28:32. Third place finishers were Matthew Frey, 32, of Chicago, in 1:16:48, and Jordan Keich, 20, of Menomonie, WI, in 1:30:44. Notable in fourth place in the women's field was Megan Levin, 42, of Glenview, who ran a 1:31:17. Is Megan coming back after raising kids these past few years. For those of you who don't know her, in the not-too-distance past, she was a powerhouse at local races. A 10K also was run at this event. Full results for both are in the Chicago Athlete results to ther right.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Quarryman Challenge Heads Up Busy Weekend

The rough-tough Quarryman Challenge 10-miler and 5K on Saturday top the list of many races in the Chicago area this weekend. The Quarryman is unique in this locale with small-town charm in southwest suburban Lemont and nasty hills to test your will and stamina. Race time is 7:30 for the 10-miler at Main and Julia Streets in downtown Lemont. The accompanying 5K goes off at 7:35 at Main and Fremont. Having run the Door County Half Marathon last weekend, also hilly, I am using common sense and not doing this race. Good luck to all who are and that your legs are fresh for the task ahead. I'll be taking it easy at Elmhurst Running Club's non-competitive Newcomers Run at 7 a.m. Have a good weekend of running and racing.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

4,000 Run Cinco de Miler 5M

Just when you thought the half-marathons ruled on a weekend loaded with races, the well-done Cinco de Miler, put on by RAM Racing, drew a huge field for the 5-mile race in Chicago. A total of 3,998 runners finished with more than 4,000 starting. Victory overall went to Mark Wehrman, 25, of Chicago, who won by a hair over Justin Jackson, 30, of Chicago. Both were timed in 26:39. Third went to Ethan Heppner, 23, of Chicago, in 26:46. Women were led by the amazing Angelica Guerrero, 50, of Chicago, in 32:34. Second was taken by Ashley Raymond, 25, of Chicago, in 32:37; and third went to Lucy Marinangeli, 29, of Chicago, in 32:53. Both top threes were close and the field was loaded with runners of all speeds and abilities. Nice job by everyone involved.

Soldier Field 10M Close to Filling

If you're on the fence about registering for the Soldier Field 10M on Saturday, May 26, I'd advise you to sign up. Organizers say it is more than 85 percent filled. It's a great event with a fun finish on the 50-yard line at Soldier Field. To sign up or to get info, go to

Monday, May 7, 2012

Weasler Two-Peats at Door County

As you might know by now, I ran in one of my favorite races Saturday up at the Door County Half Marathon. The beautiful course in Peninsula State Park has a little bit of everything. The hills are rough but the scenery is spectacular. From a Chicago point of view, Annie Weasler of the Windy City won the women's title for the second year in a row with a 1:32:34. Also, Nancy Rollins, 65, of Evanston, won her age group by close to an hour with a great 1:40:09. Here is the official press release recap of the race.
First-time half marathoner torches course for Door County title
Brian Finnel of Forestville became the first Door County native to win the Door County Half Marathon May 5, finishing in 1:09:07 to out-pace last year’s winner, Dominick Meyer, who finished in 1:10:19. Finnel led three UW – Stevens Point grads at the top of the finishers list. This was Finnel’s first attempt at the half-marathon distance, one he is obviously suited for. His time was just 20 seconds off the course record set in 2008 by Oshkosh’s Jason Ryf, a qualifier for the U.S. Olympic Marathon trials. Finnel’s time was the third fastest in race history. Meyer, of Beloit, improved on his 2011 time of 1:12:25, but it wasn’t enough to keep pace with Finnel.
Annie Weasler repeated as the women’s champion. The Chicago resident crossed the finish line in 1:32:34, a bit off of her 2011 pace but still good enough to win handily.
Ben Schmitt of Burlington raced to a new Nicolet Bay 5k course record in the fifth running of the race Saturday. Schmitt’s time of 16:31 topped the record of 17:30 set by Joseph Guenther in 2008 by nearly a minute. On the women’s side, Hannah Lyons of Whitefish Bay posted the second fastest time ever on the course, finishing in 21:00, a time beat only by Bailey Wolf, who posted a time of 19:44 in 2011.
More than 1650 people registered for the half marathon, while another 580 registered for the 5k, a total increase of 230 participants over last year’s event.
Next year’s Door County Half Marathon will be run May 4, 2013.
For complete results, visit: - racetop

Door County Half Marathon Top 5 Men
1. Brian Finnel, Forestville, Wis., 1:09:07
2. Dominick Meyer, Beloit, Wis., 1:10:19
3. Brad Seeley, Weston, Wis., 1:11:44
4. Rodee Schneider, Madison, Wis., 1:14:35
5. Tony Steeno, Traverse City, Mich., 1:21:10
Door County Half Marathon Top 5 Women
1. Annie Weasler, Chicago, 1:32:34
2. Mary Bolich, Plymouth, Wis., 1:33:22
3. Tammy W., De Pere, Wis., 1:35:16
4. Emily Bowles, Appleton, Wis., 1:35:35
5. Dawn Boynton, Rochester, Minn., 1:36:43

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Southwest Half Marathon to Wambua, Kitaka

The CARA Runner's Choice Circuit visited the southwest suburbs on Sunday as the fifth annual First Midwest Bank Southwest Half Marathon brought out runners of all speeds for the annual trek on Route 83. There were 1,638 finishers with Robert Wambua, registered out of Coon Rapids, MN, taking first in 1:06:49 and collecting $1,000 in prize money. Women's winner, also worth a grand, was Doreen Kitaka, 28, of Palos Heights, in 1:18:14. Back in the men's race, Benson Chesang, 28, placed second in 1:07:33 and won $800, while Artus Bareikis, 28, of Oak Forest, took third in 1:13:09, winning $700. Second-place woman was a name from the recent past, Kim Miltz, 38, of Hoffman Estates. She ran a 1:23:16, good for $800. Third and $700 went to Jacqui Aubert, 25, of Crystal Lake, in 1:25:11. It looked like a strong field top to bottom. Congrats to all. The resuts are on the Racer's Hub site.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Ausen, Hamstra-Wright Win Wisconsin Marathon

It was windy but a good day to run in Kenosha, WI, on Saturay at the Wisconsin Marathon and Half Marathon. Here are the marathon top fives:

Half Marathon

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Wesley Korir Running Chicago - Again

For those of you who don't know it, Boston winner Wesley Korir (Chicago runner-up last year) will be back in Chi-Town this October to run the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. You might have seen the Sun-Times story earlier this week on his love for deep-dish pizza! At any rate, here is the official news release.

Wesley Korir Targets His Fifth Consecutive
Bank of America Chicago Marathon
After Stunning Victory in Boston

CHICAGO - The Bank of America Chicago Marathon has announced that Wesley Korir, the newly crowned Boston Marathon champion, will return to run Chicago's fall classic for the fifth consecutive year. Korir is the first elite athlete announced for the 35th running of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 7.
Korir, a native of Kenya who attended the University of Louisville in Kentucky and still lives and trains there, was runner-up at the 2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon in a personal best 2:06:15. Even with his world-class performance in Chicago, Korir was a relative underdog this spring when he executed a perfect race plan in challenging conditions at the Boston Marathon, rallying from nearly a minute behind the race leader with five miles to go to win his first Major marathon in stunning fashion.
With two L.A. Marathon victories to his credit, Korir has a storied history at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. After paying his own way into the open field at the 2008 event, he started the race five minutes behind the elite athletes, yet still managed to record the fourth-fastest time of the day, catching and passing all but a few members of the elite field before posting a finish time of 2:13:53. The following year, Korir was invited back to Chicago as an official member of the elite field and placed sixth overall in 2:10:38. In 2010, he improved once again to fourth place overall in 2:08:44 before his break-through performance in 2011 that served as the springboard to his defining win in Boston. After the biggest victory of his career, Korir enters the 2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon with his eye on the top level of the podium.
"We're thrilled to welcome Wesley back to the Bank of America Chicago Marathon for the fifth year in a row, no doubt with a little more fanfare this year after his well-earned victory at the Boston Marathon," said Executive Race Director Carey Pinkowski. "Wesley has proven that he's one of the best marathon runners in the world, but I am far more impressed by his humble nature and perseverance. He literally started his marathon career with the masses and now he's at the pinnacle of the sport. He's a true success story."
"The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is where I started my professional career and I am honored to return to this year's race, especially after winning the Boston Marathon," said Korir. "I love the city of Chicago. It's close to Louisville and I always have a large group of friends who drive up to cheer for me, which makes me feel at home along with the support from the local fans and volunteers. I come to the Bank of America Chicago Marathon this year full of confidence that no matter who is in the field, they will have to beat me to win it."

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Southwest Half Ready for 5th Edition

The 5th annual First Midwest Bank Southwest Half Marathon is ready to go. The 7:30 start on Sunday will feature a strong field with some money and pride on the line for a large, quality field toeing the line for competition and fun. The race starts at Route 83 and 76th Avenue. The primarily east-west out-and-back course runs primarily along Route 83. As the race's Web site says, the course "weaves through gorgeous forest paths and flat pavement through the cities of Palos Heights, Palos Park and Palos Hills." It's anyone's guess who will win. Last year's men's field was led by the 1-2 Kenyan punch of Benson Cheruiyot and Julius Kiptoo in 1:05:01 and 1:05:05. Erin Moffett was women's winner in 2011 with a 1:19:27. I don't know if any of them are back. A lot of the area's best age-group runners wil be there competing for CARA Runners Choice Circuit points. Good luck to all.