Maksim Korolev by Harvard Athletics Communications
Fall 2011 looked like a banner year for the Crimson from the start, but overtraining injuries cut the season short for the majority of the team. For Fall 2012, Coach Jason Saretsky has changed the training approach so that this does not happen for a second year in a row. So far, it appears to be working.
Juniors Maksim Korolev (Harrisonville, Mo.) and James Leakos (Saskatoon, Sask.) rose up this year to be a dependable 1-2 for the Crimson (order varying). Korolev could have the edge over his teammate Leakos as he was the top Ivy League finisher — an 18th place in 23:57 — at the adidas Wisconsin Invite (where all but Penn raced). However, Leakos had an outstanding showing at the 2011 Paul Short Invite where he finished fifth behind three runners from distance-powerhouse Oklahoma and UNC-Greensboro star Paul Chelimo. Both men are looking at spots on the individual podium this year, which will definitely bring the Crimson into the top half of the League.
But pack running is the key which allowed them to dominate the annual Harvard-Yale duel and show the team depth at the Princeton Invitational that was held on the Heps’ championship course. Frosh Tom Purnell (Gloucestershire, U.K.), Kurt Ruegg (Yountville, Calif.), Billy Gaudreau (Dana Point, Calif.), and Lukas Gemar (Moorhead, Minn.) have broken 25 minutes for 8k this season, which could make the difference between placing in the top or bottom half of the conference standings. — Mary Boggs