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January Cold Ineffective as Deterrent for Columbia Runners

Dreier, Thomas take 10k; Reeves takes 20k at 2007 Runner’s Choice

By Eric Bunch

Saturday January, 6, a typically chilly winter morning, found me setting up a white table with abnormally short legs in the middle of a parking lot at Bethel Park.  At 7:00 AM very few signs of life exist in such a blustery environment.  Had I arrived too early?  However, I lay out a pen and open spiral notebook knowing that they would arrive soon.   An hour earlier I had crept my way through the dark at Tryathletics to fill water coolers and retrieve miscellaneous items which included locating that small table and hefting a husky race clock into the front seat of my compact car.  A short while later I was unloading one of those full coolers at a nondescript location on the shoulder of Nifong.  I set it against the guardrail and sped away as if to leave it for a covert pickup.  This would mark the turnaround for the 2007 Runner’s Choice.   

Sure enough, at about 7:30 they did begin to arrive.  One or two at a time, the runners, unfettered by the cold of the Missouri winter, came to prove their dedication.  Some drove, a few walked or ran and at least one biked to the start; twenty-seven of them in all had come to make their bid at the 10k or 20k.  Luckily, one of them, Matt Dreier, had enough sense to realize that my short legged table actually could be extended to a height reasonable for its intended purpose.  A bit cold for wayward bystanders and the occasional underdressed race director, the weather was perfect for the committed harriers hoping to motor their ways to personal bests, coveted bragging rights or unbridled competition.   

Shortly after 8:00 they were off.  I watched as they disappeared around the corner at Nifong Road to the north.  Their path would take them all the way to that blank spot on the side of the road where I had earlier dropped off five gallons of water, now occupied by Linda LaFontaine and Joe Duncan.  Then they would return some thirty minutes later in the same route.  The ones doing the 10k would finish and those electing to do the longer alternative would make the turn to repeat the out and back.   

With the clock ticking, I made predictions in my head as I waited.  Matt Dreier’s lack of commitment to one of the two distances distracted my prediction process.  He would surely be a factor in whichever race he decides to do. Sure enough, just after thirty-seven minutes Dreier rounded the corner with Marc Keys in tow.  They crossed the line in 37:39 and 37:45 respectively.  Next, in just under 40 minutes, was Trevor Reeves completing his first lap on the way to the 20k.  Mike Dennehy with his quadruped training partner, Riley crossed the 10k line in third place.  Competitive triathlete and CTC cross country runner, Tony Rigdon came in fourth.  Destiny Thomas was the first woman to cross the line with Lisa Wells coming in second.   

Trevor Reeves continued his torrid pace to take the 20k title in 1:19:04.  A relative newcomer to the CTC scene, Reeves only began running a couple of years prior to his impressive 20k debut.  His time from this year’s Runner’s Choice 20k was a faster pace than his 10k from the previous year’s event.  Tom May and Phil Schaefer battled out a close race for second with May coming out on top.  Andy Emerson crossed the 20k mark in 1:27:45 and continued on for a third lap becoming the first person to complete the Runner’s Choice 30k option.      

10k Results

1 Matt DreierM 37:39
2 Marc KeysM 37:45
3 Mike DennehyM 40:05
4 Tony RigdonM 41:10
5 Destiny ThomasF 45:30
6 Fred Schmidt M 46:13
7 James HarringtonM 48:30
8 Stony CrammerM 49:00
9 David AlbinM 50:33
10 Lisa WellsF 50:33
11 Steve KullmanM 51:08
12 John MoretonM 54:00
13 Jeff WellsM 54:08
14 Kurt KennettM 54:08
15 Rod StevensM 54:52
16 Ann MoretonF 1:00:02
17 Tom FroidlM 1:07:00
18 Monica McCroryF 1:09:00
19 Jim LinvilleM 1:21:21

20k Results

1 Trevor ReevesM 1:19:04
2 Tom MayM 1:23:00
3 Phil SchaeferM 1:25:35
4 Andy EmersonM 1:27:45
5 Oscar ChavezM 1:31:45
6 Mark KiekhaeferM 1:41:58
7 Hugh EmersonM 1:53:56