Monday, April 16, 2007

Boston: A Tough Day at the Races for Team USA Minnesota

Sometimes you eat the bear ... and sometimes the bear eats you.

As you might expect on a rain-soaked, 40s degree, winds-gusting-to-50-miles-per-hour day, conditions took their toll on runners at today's Boston's Marathon. The trio of Team USA marathoners who had hopes of top-10 finishes and Olympic Marathon Trails qualifying marks, came up short of its goals in the challenging conditions.

Chris Lundstrom led the Team USA Minnesota contingent with a 17th place finish in 2:21:24. He held up pretty well, all things considered, after coming through the half-way mark in 1:09:12. Lundstrom had hoped to improve on his 16th place finish here a year ago.

Jason Lehmkuhle who clocked 1:08:44 through the half-way mark in a pack of top-10 contenders finished 101st in 2:38:05. The "bear" has gotten Lehmkuhle in the late-going of his last two marathons -- after leading early-on at the 2006 Twin Cities Marathon, he ended up a suffering 9th.

Come-backing Sara Wells, the 2003 USA Marathon Champion, finished 32nd overall and 24th in the USA Women's Championship held in junction with the open race at Boston. Wells clocked 2:54:07 after splitting 1:20:32 at half-way. Improbably, she ran the exact same time at TCM last year for 23rd place in the USA Championship there.

Wells still needs a Trails qualifying mark in order to compete at the 2008 Olympic Trials to be held at Boston in one year. She finished 7th in the 2004 Marathon Trials.

Former Team USA Minnesota and Brainerd High School star Turena Johson Lane had the best performance by a Minnesotan. The Palmetto Bay, Florida resident finished 18th overall and 11th in USA Championship in 2:44:23.

Minnesota's Sharon Stubler was the 8th place masters woman clocking 3:13:35.

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