Distance Records Highlight U.S.’s Fall Racing Season

Molly Huddle splashed her way to a trio of long-distance American Records on the track. (MIKE SCOTT)

OLYMPIC VETERANS Molly Huddle & Galen Rupp etched their names into the American Record books as the leaves continued to fall.

15K, 10M & 1-Hour American Records For Molly Huddle

Prolific Molly Huddle, she of so many national records and titles, added three more ARs at the New England Series #1 race (Attleboro, Massachusetts, November 01). The 36-year-old vet tackled the rarely-run 1-Hour event and while a clock’s hands did a 360 covered 17,930m (11M, 248y) in the cold and rain.

That crushed the old mark of 16,632m (10M, 587y) set by Katie Misuraca in ’14. En route, Huddle also destroyed the national 15km and 10M records of 53:06 and 55:58 with her times of 50:07.82 and 53:49.9. The old marks were set by Nancy Conz back in ’81.

In an Instagram post she titled “Power hour on the track!” Huddle continued, “Trying to put fun, unique, local challenges on the calendar this season to get through the grind. It’s been hard to push myself and nothing feels smooth or easy the last few months, but having some specific goals gets me out the door working harder than I would otherwise.” She concluded, “The hour went by pretty fast, actually.”

Galen Rupp Claims 10-Mile Standard

Two days before Huddle’s record spree, Galen Rupp claimed the men’s road 10M standard in a “secret” half-marathon run in Dorena, Oregon. With only Japan’s Suguru Osako as serious company, the 34-year-old Rupp won the full 13.1M race in 60:23, the No. 6 time in U.S. history, and just 26 seconds off his PR.

En route he passed through the 10M point in an American Record 45:54, well under the previous standard of 46:13 set by Greg Meyer in ’83.

“When this came up I was just pumped and I’m just super grateful to be able to get a race in,” Rupp told Chris Hansen of the Eugene Register-Guard. “I haven’t run with any other person since about 16, 17 miles into the Olympic Trials.”

Breakthrough Year Continues For Keira D’Amato

She spent 8 years out of the sport, 2009–16, but Keira D’Amato is making headlines at age 36, winning the Michigan Pro Half-Marathon (Shelby Charter Township, October 28) in a PR 68:57, good enough to move her to No. 10 on the all-time U.S. list. It was her second PR of the year, after running 70:01 in Houston in January. She began the year claiming a PR of just 73:32.

She told Fast Women that she has been getting along without training partners, revealing, “I do the majority of my runs and workouts alone. The guy that I liked to work out with leading into the Olympic Marathon Trials moved about an hour away, so for hard efforts, I sometimes just drive there and beg him to work out with me. I’ll do that maybe a couple times a month, and then I have a girlfriend who I like to do my long runs with. But I do everything else on my own. I did get my husband a bike for Christmas, so now maybe once a week, he’ll bike with me.”

A Truncated Collegiate Conference XC Season

The last weekend of October featured the few NCAA conferences that will be staging loop championships this fall. Here’s the highlights of the 3 Power 5 meets:

ACC: Notre Dame Men, NC State Women
Powered by senior Yared Nuguse’s 23:03.6 over the 8K route, Notre Dame’s men scored a solid 40–54 win, taking the crown for the second time in 3 years.

On the women’s side, NC State racked up its fifth title in a row, handily dispatching Georgia Tech 47–99. The Wolfpack were led by individual winner Dominique Clairmonte, who turned the 6K course in 19:55.1.

Big 12: Oklahoma State Men, Iowa State Women
It was a 2-team men’s Big 12 contest as Oklahoma State and Iowa State combined for 9 of the top 10 spots and ended up with 31 points each. The Cowboys won on the tiebreaker. “A win at conference like this over Iowa State, it gives us a lot of confidence,” said Oke State coach Justin Duncan. The Cyclones did claim the individual winner, junior Justin Kiptoo’s 22:35.4 giving him almost a 15-second margin.

Iowa State’s women rolled to a 39–62 win over Texas, with individual winner Callie Logue (20:00.5) leading the way.

SEC: Both Team Titles To Powerful Arkansas
The Hogs didn’t provide either of the individual winners, but handily won both team titles. The men prevailed over Mississippi 35–59 and women over Alabama 41–57. It was the ninth straight win for Arkansas.

The Arkansas men (“It was a great team performance for our guys today,” said coach Chris Bucknam) had to overcome an Ole Miss 1-2-3 paced by junior Mario García Romo. The women’s individual title went to Alabama’s Mercy Chelangat. □