Two Times a World King, and Other Alumni Updates

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While the undergraduates have been transitioning to indoor track, the alumni have been fairly active on both the cross country and road racing scenes on both the local and oversea scenes.

Locally, the alumni represented HepsNation well at both the Manchester Road Race in Connecticut and the USATF Club National Cross Country Championships in Pennsylvania.

The 78th edition of the Manchester Road Race (the oldest and largest race in Connecticut that is always held on Thanksgiving Day) featured 6 Ivy men and 1 Ivy woman finishing in the top 20, led by course winner Ben True (D ‘03). True was pushed by his training partner Sam Chelanga throughout the race, as they ran side-by-side until the final 100 meters. True’s stronger push over the final uphill climb helped him finish 4 seconds ahead of his training partner for the win, 21:34 to 21:38. The other Ivy finishers include Donn Cabral (4th – 21:50), Dan Lowry (6th – 21:54), Joe Stilin (11th – 22:11), Ethan Shaw (13th – 22:17), and Chris Bendtsen (17th – 22:51) in the men’s race top 20, while Abby Levene (12th – 25:55) was the lone Ivy woman to finish in the top 20.

A lot of these athletes also contested the USATF Club National Cross Country Championships in Bethlehem, Penn on December 13th. Joe Stilin (Pr ’12) was the first Ivy finisher, crossing the line in 10th place in 29:36.90 and helped his Zap Fitness Reebok team to the national team title. Eight other Ivies finished in the top 100 of the 9.8 km race:
12 – Cameron Marantz (Pr ’09) – 29:43.71
15 – Dan Lowry (B ’13) – 29:50.11
17 – Ethan Shaw (D ’13) – 29:52.45
55 – Henry Sterling (B ’14) – 30:34.89
56 – Chris Bendtsen (Pr ’14) – 30:37.15
69 – Michael Franklin (Pr ’13) – 30:45.90
89 – James Kelly (H ’06) – 31:08.21
92 – Lucas Meyer (Y ’03) – 31:09.85

In the women’s 5.8km race, Princeton alumna Carrie Dimoff (27th place, 20:29.68) was the first of 8 Ivy finishers. Two of the Ivy finishers include current Princeton undergraduates: Lindsay Eysenbach and Emily de La Bruyere. The full list of Ivy women finishers in the top 100 are below:
27 – Carrie Dimoff (Pr ‘06) – 20:29.68
35 – Delilah DiCrescenzo (Col ‘05) – 20:38.35
37 – Sarah Cummings (Pr ‘11) – 20:39.42
55 – Olivia Mickle (B ’13) – 21:07.49
61 – Marisa Cummings (Pr ‘14) – 21:12.23
63 – Erin Dromgoole (D ‘01) – 21:14.34
69 – Lindsay Eysenbach (Pr ‘15) – 21:20.03
76 – Emily de La Bruyere (Pr ’15) – 21:26.50

Meanwhile, USATF has upgraded True from runner up to US champion at the 2012 10-mile national championship as the original champion, Mo Trafeh, was determined to have been doping at that time.

For overseas racing, we span from Qatar to Bulgaria to Hawaii to Japan.

Perhaps the biggest headline was Max King’s (Cor ’03) winning two more world titles in the realms of ultramarathon and obstacle course racing. The first title came back on October 18th, where King won the inaugural Warrior Dash World Championships in Esparto, Calif. King won in a time of 22:34.55, 51 seconds ahead of the next closest competitor. Now, this world championship course was a 5km that featured 15 different obstacles that tested one’s balancing, climbing, crawling, jumping, and traversing abilities. (Check out some great race photos and reporting here). This dominating win has nominated King for Mud Run Guide’s Best Male Athlete and Best Moment categories in their annual running awards (you can vote for Max here until December 29th 11:59 PM EDT).

King won his second world title a little over a month later, as on November 21st, he won the 27th IAU 100km World Championships in Doha, Qatar in his 100km road race debut. (That’s 62.1 miles for you non-metric folk). King’s individual title helped Team USA claim the world team title, holding off Japan and Great Britain for the top team spots. King’s winning time of 6:27:43 was 4 minutes ahead of the next finisher, but it is also a USA and North American record (the previous record was set in 1995 by Tom Johnson, 6:30:11). It should be noted that even though this race was held during the evening/nighttime hours, it was still hot and humid for the entire duration of the race. And guess where the 2018 World Track and Field Championships are going to be? Yep, Doha.

In addition to these world championship titles, King was recognized with Rob Krar and Sage Canaday (Cor ’08) as Competitor’s 2014 Ultrarunners of the Year.  King was recognized mainly for the accomplishments noted above, while Canaday’s two wins at what are considered the hardest ultramarathons in the country (Utah’s Speedgoat 50K and The North Face 50) earned him props from this running magazine.

Jumping over to Chiba, Japan – just before Thanksgiving, Liz Costello (Pr ‘10) helped Team USA finish in 6th place with a time of 2:09:13 at the Chiba International Ekiden Relay. The ekiden was a 6 stage relay race, where the stage lengths varied from 5km to 10km in length. Costello ran the 5km 4th stage where her 16:17 time was the fastest among all stage competitors. Team Japan won the team title with a time of 2:05:53.

Two Ivies competed on December 14th, but in two very different races. Yale’s All-American Kevin Dooney extended his cross country season into December as he represented Under-23 Team Ireland at the European Cross Country Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria.  Dooney finished 18th overall with a time of 26:17, leading his Irish team to a 9th place showing. On the near-opposite side of the planet, Columbia alumna Lisa Nemec finished in second place at the windy Honolulu Marathon in 2:31:35. Kenya’s Joyce Chepkirui won the event in a time of 2:30:23.

Photo by iRunFar/Bryon Powell

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