Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A Kara Goucher Bronze Medal Scrapbook

Since it ain't every day that a Minnesotan wins a medal at a World Championships -- heck, Kara Goucher's bronze was the first-ever for an American at 10,000 meters -- we thought it was worth the effort and the band-width to gather as many mementos of the accomplishment as we could as an keepsake.

Call it scrap-blogging!

Let's start with a photo from the race itself, by DtB contributor Sean Hartnett ...

It's the late-going and eventual winner Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia (412) and eventual silver medalist Elvan Abeylegesse of Turkey (904) lead Goucher and former Providence star Kim Smith of New Zealand.

Here's another Hartnett shot -- Sean did awesome photo/video work at my wedding too! -- of Goucher fighting it out for the bronze with Smith (left) and Great Britian's Joanne Pavey (behind.)

Pavey would finish 4th, Smith 5th.

Goucher, according to my very accurate sometime-colleagues at Track & Field News, closed the race with a 16.0 last 100m and a 32.0 last 200.

Her final 400m was 65.2 and the final 800m was 2:15.6.

She clocked 5Ks of 16:30.6 and 15:31.4; her final 1600m was 4:42.6.

That kind of finishing can tire a gal (or fella!) out ...

But, oh, the satisfaction that must come from succeeding on such a grand scale.

There's been a wealth of good print coverage of Goucher's historic feat. Here's a sampling ...

From her old hometown paper, the Duluth News-Tribune

From her college-town paper, the Boulder Daily Camera (with a sweet photo with her USA teammate/husband Adam.)

From her current hometown paper, the Portland Oregonian.

From USA Today.

From Sports Illustrated Online (with a great photo!)

From Parker Morse for the IAAF (with a nice photo.)

There's also video of Goucher's post-race media conference, HERE, thanks to Flocast. (That's our shooter Sean, getting in that one last question!)

I'm told an extended video interview is with Goucher is coming soon. Keep checking DtB for details.

Photos by Sean Hartnett.


Chad said...

Nice recap. All her photos are amazing; exhausted, stunned, elated, etc.

And great job sneaking in a plug for Sean's wedding photography skills. It's nice to know they're not just limited to T&F.

miller said...

I like this photo from the IAAF gallery:

Guess it falls in the "elated" category.

Chad said...

Yeah, that's elated. And it reminds me I need to add a crunch or two to my routine.

Brian said...

Nice photos and links. Leave it to DtB to provide us with more perspectives on this tremendous achievement. I wonder if DtB could provide a short career racing biography for Kara Goucher. Was she considered a "phenom" out of high school? Would one have predicted this kind of success after her senior year in high school? after her senior year in college?

Charlie said...

I lieu of a full retrspective, let me offer my first memory of Goucher and some State XC results ...

The memory is from the MSHSL State Track meet up in Blaine. Someone will have to fill in the exact year.

Anyway, this Duluth East 8th grader (I believe) named Kara Wheeler immediately bursts to the lead in the 3200. She passes 400 in 72 ... ho-hum, just 9:36 pace.

I think to myself, poor girl's gonna pay for that.

Show's what I knew. She didn't hold the pace, of course, but she kept the lead and won.

I just glanced quickly at some old State XC results -- on RaceberryJam. She wasn't always dominant. She was also hidden in the shadow cast by Carrie Tollefson.

At State XC she ...

... was 3rd in Class AA as an 8th grader in '91 behind Carrie Tollefson (a grade ahead of her) and Tina Forthmiller.

... was 5th in Class AA in '92 behind Lisa Aro, teammate Amy Hill, and Missy and Turena Johnson.

... won Class AA big in '93 as a sophomore, over Sophie Hartshorn.

... was on the losing end of a great duel in '94 with Tollefson -- 14:09.2 to 14:10.5 -- her junior year. (Tollefson was Class A the other years.)

... was 3rd in '95 behind Elaine Eggleston and Yvonne Glenn as a senior.

She started the Duluth East dynasty, though -- she was on 4 State Champion teams -- '92 through '95.

Brian said...

That's exactly what I was looking for Charlie. That was my perception of her hs career even though I was not here at those times. One has to wonder if those ladies that beat her at those state meets(other than Tollefson) even know what she has accomplished, or are they telling their friends and families about their victory over her.

It is interesting in that list of girls that beat her over that 5-year span that each name only appears once. Besides Tollefson, the others appeared to have their one incredible year, while Wheeler/Goucher was consistently great. Being on a great team probably helps one to stay focused, even when not having the best of seasons.

Chad said...

Brian, I don't know about all the women that beat Kara in HS, but Elaine Eggleston runs for Run n Fun and Turena Johnson-Lane has had a solid career.