Sunday, August 17, 2014

UPRRC Member Fast Eddie breaks USA and World Records

The races are over: 24 Hour, 48 Hour and full 6 days in the Dome as it was billed. The big dome with the quarter mile track inside it, up in Anchorage, Alaska.

It was said at the event that only 300 people in the world do multi-day races, and maybe 40 of them set national or world records. Fast Eddie Rousseau was in rare company, though he had met a number of the other competitors in ultra-marathons over the past many years. Coincidentally, this was the 30 year anniversary of his last work life trip to Alaska and ironically his only overall  marathon win in the old Earthquake Park Marathon. So a good omen to come, he thought.

But Eddie arrived with a bad head and chest cold. So he fought the cold, the other runners and the track for 6 days. "I got tired early and napped in the first 24 hours (normally never do), and only hit 80 miles," he said. Forget records he thought and decided to sleep only when dead on his feet and for only 20 minutes at a time. That way Fast Eddie managed to be on the track almost 22 of every 24 hours though with sore legs and going very slow.

Miraculously, he had no leg injury or foot problems/blisters. Some runners got knocked out by both issues. So his long but slow progress on the track paid off. Fast Eddie managed to total 336 miles. A new US Masters Division 70-74 Record and a World Masters 70-74 Division Indoor Track Record!!!!  He might have other records as well, like for the 48 Hour Distance etc.

He placed 15th out of 48 entered runners and top runner over age 70. The second 70-74 year old was from England and had but 260 miles, some 93 miles behind him. " So I was very lucky, especially with the bad cold," he said as he left the dome. Then someone else said, " who was that tough 74 year old runner?"

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

2014 Festival Ironwood Walk, Run and Roll

The 2014 Festival Ironwood Walk, Run and Roll was held on Saturday, July 19 at Norrie Park.
  • Jason Smith from Milwaukee, WI, was the top male finisher in the 2-mile event in a time of 10:42. 
  • Jenna Magness, Lansing, MI, won the women’s 2-mile title in a time of 13:57.
  • Paxson Menard, Poplar Grove, IL, was the 5-mile champion posting a time of 29:04. 
  • Hannah Palmeter, Bessemer, was the overall female in the 5-mile event in a time of 32:02
Entrants for the race came from all over the United States and included a few international entrants.
Lukas and Samuel Schnyder and Melissa Johnson won the Longest Distance award, traveling over 8,000 miles from Johannesburg, South Africa, to compete.

It’s fun to see where entrants come from,” said race director, Chris Bergquist. “This year we had folks from Virginia, California, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Minnesota, Illinois, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Upper and Lower Michigan.”

Mallory Young, age 5, from Negaunee, MI, was the youngest entrant and Margaret Bull, Ironwood, was the senior entrant at age 86.

“The wide range of ages shows that this event is for all spectrums of the family,” said Bergquist. “Aspirus Grand View is the sponsor of this event and we gear this to be a healthy event that all family members can enjoy together.”

This year’s race was moved out to Norrie Park due to US2 being detoured along McLeod Avenue.
“I was not sure how moving to Norrie Park would affect the race,” said Chris Bergquist, race director. “As it turned out, the park was a great place to hold the event. I had a lot of positive comments about the flatter course and people were amazed at how beautiful it was out at Norrie Park.”

“I really want to thank all the volunteers who came out to help with the race,” said Bergquist. “The event could not happen without their volunteer efforts.”

Photos courtesy of Chris Bergquist .

Jason Smith and Jenna Magness took top honors in the 2-mile event

Paxson Menard and Hannah Palmeter won the 5-mile male and female events

Mallory Young, age 5, and Margaret Bull, age 86, were the youngest and oldest entrants