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Tegenkamp, Metivier Baillie Win 20K

Matt Tegenkamp

Matt Tegenkamp

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – (September 3, 2012) – Matt Tegenkamp (Portland, Ore.) and Renee Metivier Baillie (Bend, Ore.) won the respective men’s and women’s titles at the USA 20K Championships on Labor Day Monday as part of the 35th Stratton Faxon New Haven Road Race in New Haven. Tegenkamp’s time of 58 minutes, 30 seconds set a men’s national championship record, while Metivier Baillie’s time of 1:07:08 made her the 6th fastest American woman for the distance.

Men’s Championship
Tegenkamp, 30, a two-time Olympian, followed Luke Puskedra (Eugene, Ore.) through a blazing early pace and helped guide him to the U.S. championships record. Puskedra, 22, who took the national runner-up spot 18-seconds back, aggressively brought a pack of 18 through the opening mile in 4:34 and then proceeded to pull away from the field coming through three miles in 13:48, with only Robert Cheseret (Colorado Springs, Colo.) within reach.

Cheseret would drift back as Puskedra charged onward, coming through the half way 10K split at 28:33, well ahead of the chase pack 20 seconds behind.

Despite the 71-degree temperature and 73 percent humidity, Puskedra passed up every water stop, but benefited from the new shadier course. It was at halfway mark, however, that Tegenkamp and Joseph Chirlee (San Antonio, Texas) began to work together on narrowing the gap. At 10 miles, it was just Tegenkamp running solo to catch upstart Puskedra. The two would run side-by-side through 12 miles before Tegenkamp switched to another gear to seal the win and earn $9000. Puskedra, however, produced an impressive debut of 58:48.

Augustus Maiyo (Colorado Springs, Colo.) rallied for third in 59:39, while Chirlee held on for 4th at 59:54, with Cheseret kicking past 2010 USA 20K champion Sean Quigley (Boulder, Colo.) for 5th in 1:00:00, giving the U.S. Army three of the top five men’s spots.

Women’s Championship
The women’s race started out at 5:23 per mile pace with a pack of about eight women. The pack stayed tight reaching the two-mile mark in 10:47. After clicking of a 5:16 third mile on the downhill section of the course, a pack of five emerged with 2011 USA 25K champion Molly Pritz (Boulder, Colo.) leading Serena Burla (Falls Church, Va.), Stephanie Rothstein (Flagstaff, Ariz.), Alisha Williams (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Metivier Baillie.

As the sun broke through the trees around mile four and five, the lead pack dwindled to four as Williams dropped off the back of the 5:20 pace that the leaders were pushing. Just past mile five, Metivier Baillie, 30, started to make a move but settled back into the rhythm of the foursome. Passing through 10K at 33:00, the athletes looked strong with Burla slightly off the pack. Shortly after the eight-mile mark, her patience paid off as Metivier Baillie increased her lead through the rolling hills of East Rock Park.

Metivier Baillie then cruised to the victory in 1:07:08, with Pritz securing second at 1:07:21 and Rothstein rounding out the top three in 1:07:59.

35th Stratton Faxon New Haven Road Race: USA 20K Championships
New Haven, CT, Monday, September 3, 2012

MEN
1) Matt Tegenkamp (OR), 58:30*, $9000
2) Luke Puskedra (OR), 58:48, $5000
3) Augustus Maiyo (CO), 59:39, $2500
4) Joseph Chirlee (TX), 59:54, $1500
5) Robert Cheseret (CO), 1:00:00, $1000
6) Sean Quigley (CO), 1:00:02, $700
7) Christo Landry (MI), 1:00:04, $600
8) Ben Bruce (AZ), 1:00:22, $500
9) Brent Vaughn (OR), 1:00:24, $400
10) Patrick Smyth (CA), 1:00:27, $300
*USA Championship record (previous record, 58:42, Abdi Abdirahman (AZ), NewAlliance New Haven Road Race, CT, 2005)

WOMEN
1) Renee Metivier Baillie (OR), 1:07:08, $9000
2) Molly Pritz (CO), 1:07:21, $5000
3) Stephanie Rothstein (AZ), 1:07:59, $2500
4) Serena Burla (VA), 1:08:45, $1500
5) Adriana Nelson-Pirtea (CO), 1:09:06, $1000
6) Alisha Williams (CO), 1:09:11, $700
7) Jeannette Faber (OR), 1:09:35, $600
8) Stephanie Pezzullo (NC), 1:09:36, $500
9) Brianne Nelson (CO), 1:09:37, $400
10) Katie McGregor (MN), 1:10:00, $300