TVR 2011 Race Reports

2011 Titus van Rijn Reports

Congratulations to each of the 102 participants in the 13th Titus van Rijn Distance Classic.   Stephanie Snyder (Salem, OR) improved on her 2010 performance by 480 meters to establish a new women’s record of 14,895m (~9.25 miles).  Stephanie had been runner-up to Pam Smith in 2010, when both surpassed the previous TVR record.  On the men’s side, Brad Mitchell (Sun Valley, ID) ran 375m further than his 2010 runner-up performance to earn his first TVR title.  Brad’s total of 15,875m (~9.87 miles) is the #2 all-time performance in the men’s 40-49 age bracket.

In addition to Stephanie and Brad’s performances, we noticed a number of outstanding age-group marks this year, prompting us to compile all-time top ten TVR performances by age.  In 2011 new TVR bests were established by:

¨     Bob Hoekman (Mazama, WA/Houston, TX) men 70+ category (11,400m)

¨     Ann Jeffery (Sun Valley, ID) women 60-69 (10,718m)

¨     Ella Hall (WA) women 19 & under (11,250m)

¨     Alex Gonzalez (WA) men 19 & under (13,680m)

Collectively, TVR participants covered over 1,057km (~657 miles).

Special thanks to everyone across the country who helped organize runs and report the results.

Meghan Hagerty on the Raleigh, NC TVR: Unless some other group decided to do a midnight run, or arrived at a track when it was still dark out, I’m pretty sure that our team was the first to complete the 2011 Titus van Rijn Run. At 6:20AM, we began to congregate at the Martin Middle School track… coffee cup in one hand and water bottle in the other. We stretched, set our water bottles by the start, and at 6:30AM began running. We had just about made it a lap when Brad said, “Ready?”. Wait, we hadn’t started yet? Apparently not… that lap was just a “warm-up”… we didn’t start exactly at the numbers. So, we re-started, and Brad kept the official time on his watch.

Within a lap, Brad, Keith, Mark, and Jennifer had formed a nice pack, while Mike, Dave, and I had formed another (no use running alone for 60min… that would just be torture!). Oyler appeared, jumped in with the “B Team” on the second lap, and caught the “A Team” by the third lap. Walt soon joined us, and we continued on our merry little way. I know I was still asleep through at least the first mile (judging by the pace at least), and I’m pretty sure most of the rest of us were too.Jennifer paced the “A Team” through the first 3 miles before splitting off to stretch (good to have you back running again… we missed you!). Oyler stayed with them through 5 or so miles, before doing the same. They also continued to cheer for us and hand off water bottles, which was great after we started to wake up 45 minutes into our circle running. Each year, the “3/4 mark” seems to be the point at which the true monotony of this exercise sets in, making the next 12 or so minutes somewhat challenging.

With between 2 and 3 minutes remaining, everyone’s pace started to pick up to try and eek out 1+ more laps. With 60sec remaining, the true acceleration began, and we attempted to make it to the next logical marker before time ran out. Finally, Brad called out “Stop”, and we all did (save for Walt who was keeping his 1-hour time). We all made our way back to the bleachers by the start line, and Brad handed out black cherry sodas. Mmmmmm… wait, it’s ONLY 7:30 in the morning?!? Good times, and thank you Brad for organizing everything, and congrats to all of those who participated.

From Tucson, AZ, John “Jack” Douglass writes: It was a pleasant Saturday morning in Tucson, with temperatures in the mid 60s when we began at 6:30 and in the mid 70s when we finished; it was much cooler this year than the past several. Everyone, including Rainyr (7) and Mostyn (9), performed well and enjoyed themselves. The only hitch of the day was we had to hop over a locked fence to get into the track. Once we were done and most people had climbed back over the fence, someone came up and offered a key to open the gate. Review of the ingredients of two brands of black cherry soda (one organic, one not) revealed similar ingredients and exactly similar calories. Both were drunk afterwards.

Emily Berriochoas reports from Idaho — Weather: sunny and clear, breezy, around 80 degrees. Attendance: 21 participants and at least 10 spectators. The third annual Nampa edition of the Titus Van Rijn one hour track classic is in the books. People gave performances that are truly inspiring, living out their stories of weight loss, starting over, or continuing journeys. We had an especially strong kids division, inspiring vision and hope for the future. Although Ben Blessing did not surpass Andy Jones-Wilkins mark as was his goal, he did take the Nampa TVR crown for the second year running, in his usual stylish manner. On the women’s side, Christie Ebenroth took the crown, bettering her mark from last year in a super run. We upped the ante in the post-race festivities arena by hauling out the BBQ and grilling hot dogs to add to the celebratory black cherry soda. Prizes for all participants were donated by our local Shu’s Idaho Running Company.

Pam Smith reports: The third running of the TVR in Salem, Oregon once again saw exponential growth with five participants facing off against the clock. Our event took place in the evening of Monday, May 16th at the Charles Bowles track at Willamette University. The performance of the day was put up by Stephanie Snyder, 41, who completed 14,895m in the 60 minute time frame, crushing the old women’s record. Dan Meireis, 53, and I ran strong till the end, mostly because I don’t think we wanted Steph to lap us! Dan hit an impressive 14,600m and I was not far behind with 14,500m. Though I was 78m shy of my mark from last year, I was pleased with my efforts just nine days after Miwok. We also had strong performances from Tom Box and Richard Collins. There were cherry sodas all around for our post-run refueling!

Hank Dart, from the TVR hotbed of Idaho: The numbers were whittled down a bit from last year’s record-breaking turnout – as smarter souls found themselves “unexpectedly” tied down with other obligations – but the 2011 running of the Titus Van Rijn (TVR) One Hour Distance Classic – Sun Valley Edition was as grand an affair as always.  Eleven toed the line on what turned out to be a rare beautiful spring day.

Taking top honors at the Sun Valley running of the TVR was, yet again, Brad Mitchell, covering close to 10 miles (15,875 meters).  Tied for second were Alex Gonzales and Hank Dart, with 13,680 meters (8.5 miles).  Top woman was Julie Cord (12,260 meters; 7.6 miles), with EJ Harpham close on her heels (12,030 meters; 7.5 miles).

(Andy Roth adds:  See Hank’s blog entry for full report and excellent event photos.)

From Seattle, Bruce ‘Balto’ Hoff writes: I’ve been upping my mileage lately for a big upcoming effort, but wanted to squeeze in this run, even if not rested. I started a TVR effort a week ago, but went out too fast and imploded after 30 min. This time I started more conservatively and had a nice, steady speed-up during the run. (Mile 8 was 10 sec faster than mile 2.) I had a sunny morning for the run with no wind, temp’s in the high 50s, and no one else on the very nice all-weather track — perfect conditions. The performance was not what I’d hoped, but I’m glad to have at least participated. Thanks for putting on this fun event.

From San Rafael, CA, Andy Roth:  Liz and I had mild (low 60s) and breezy conditions for our hour on the Terra Linda High School oval.  We started as baseball players warmed-up for a Sunday morning game.  A hawk circling overhead seemed to cheer us on, but lost interest after a couple minutes.  Chasing niece Keeley Brooks’ excellent mark, Liz covered just a little bit less distance in the hour than last year.  Channeling my inner Moses Mosop, I eked out fifty-meters more than in 2010.  Subjectively the total felt like more than the 0.3% improvement that the calculator otherwise indicated.  The TVR is a strange kind of “fun.”

My goal was to maintain a steady pace through 10km and then to run faster than 13:20 for the next 3km.  Each of the last two years my pace had drifted to slower than 7:00/mile between the 10th and 13th kilometers.  My splits this year:

4:19/4:19/4:19/4:19/4:17(5k, 21:33) 4:20/4:20/4:19/4:18/4:19(10k, 43:08) 4:19/4:18/4:19 (12:56 for 10-13km) + 104/98 and 150m

I’d like to think my improvement was due to better fitness or improved pacing, but I suspect that cooler temperatures, compared to Tucson efforts over the past three years, made the biggest difference in how I ran during the last third of the hour.

Liz and I celebrated completion of the hour by blending our own black cherry soda, using pure cherry juice and soda water.  The beverage that resulted was more tart than sweet, the best I recall since the inaugural pitchers of black cherry soda at the Valley Forge Brew Pub, back in 1999.

I dedicate my effort this year to two running friends who wanted to participate but could not.   Jay Anderson (#1 on the men’s 50-59 list) missed TVR this year while recovering from heart bypass surgery.  Mike Persick (#7 M30-39 & #9 M40-49) has missed the past two TVRs due to injury.  I’m going to be stoked to have both Jay and Mike back in 2012.

Sean Foley reports from Minnesota:  We added a new venue to TVR this year. Gaio Lakin and I were planning on running at Richfield High School here in Richfield MN, but arrived to find a soccer game about to start, so we went to plan B.  Plan B was the Blake High School track in Hopkins MN.  We had the best TVR weather in recent memory (low 50s, sunny, bit breezy) and made good use of it.  Gaio ran steady throughout to break the 15K barrier.  His splits (for 1600 meters):

6:19 /6:20 / 6:22 (5K: 19:48) 6:20 /6:21 / 6:22 (10K: 39:38) 6:32 / 6:23 /6:33 (15K: 59:52)

I ran about 7:25 pace for the first half of the race and just over 7:00 for the 2nd half.  We celebrated Gaio’s return to the TVR after a several year hiatus with IBC Black Cherry Soda on Gaio’s porch.

Upon returning home, I realized that I had come up 83 meters short of a TVR PR, so when another good weather day (cloudy, low 60s, light breeze) came about in June I tried again, this time on the Richfield High School track.  At the 15 minute split, I was 60 meters behind PR pace.  At 30 minutes, 80 meters off.  At 45 minutes, I had closed it down to 50 meters.  A solid last two miles put me 35 meters in the clear.  People who are interested in the excitement of the lap by lap splits can find them here.  There was no Black Cherry Soda this time, but the taste of a TVR PR was almost as sweet.

From the Methow Valley, WA, Erik Brooks reports: A grand total of 24 participants toed the line at this year’s TVR – TheWinthrop Edition. One more than last year if memory serves.  Anecdotally, we continued a strong tradition of parent/child participation with first-ever runnings by Betsy and Casey Smith, Leslie and Ella Hall, John and Remington

Rohrer, Allison, Taya, and Ian Delong, and Monte, Aidan, and Avery Catlin.  Rounding out our parental pairings were TVR veterans Margo and Liv Aspholm, Dawn and Taylor Woodruff, and Sarah, Erik, and Keeley Brooks. Stong efforts free of parental responsibility were the marks set by Novie McCabe, Annie Filer, Karel Renard, and Peggy and Bob Hoekman.  John and Lyn Roth, unable to attend this weekend’s running gave us an

additional two participants, (and an additional 10600m) by recording their hour the previous weekend.

14 runners were 1st time TVR participants and our 26 total runners (including the Roths) tallied 242,290m or just about 150.5 miles!!!

Well suited to our blue sky morning — some very nice running weather actually — with warm (to date) but tolerable temperatures and very little wind, 18 black cherry Blue Sky sodas were quickly consumed at the finish. My sincere apologies to anyone that went away thirsty. Next year, I’ll spring for 30 and see what happens!


Additional info and the complete results:

Bob Hoekman of Mazama/Houston, read about this in The Methow Valley News’ Winthrop Column 🙂 I missed the more formal introductions due to a stalled car on my way to the track, and then a rush out again to lead a Storyhike at Sun Mountain, but Bob is a member of the Terlingua Track Club in Houston, TX. At 69 (or 70) he appears to be no stranger to this type of event. He and his wife Peggy spend summers in Mazama and we were excited to have them join us on the track!

Team Harts Pass (as represented by John, Casey, Remington, and Erik – Keeley and Sarah NOT in uniform) made its Titus debut as well. Thor’s trademark GRRR! and undaunted determination lend themselves nicely to this event!

As per usual, the TVRs attraction to runners of all ages is great to see.  Because who DOESN’T like to run in a circle for 60 minutes on a beautiful Saturday morning! I noted school-aged grades for kicks, but we had participants as young as 5 or 6 (Avery) right on up to those into their 60s and 70s. To say nothing of the impressive distances amassed throughout.

Pat Foley reports for the Band of 10,000 Aches(BOTTA) in Northfield, MN: We ran at 7:00 AM on Saturday, May 14th.  This year we ran at St. Olaf College because the Carleton track is being renovated. (It was flooded in the fall of 2010.) It was 43 degrees, a little windy and a drizzle the last 10 minutes.  The drizzle caused everyone to guzzle the black cherry soda so they could get to their cars more quickly.  Ed set a BOTTA record for TVR by 400 meters beating the record set the first year we ran in 2004.  Next year we hope to reach 1,000,000 meters in our 9 years of running TVR.

Will Kemper (ID) reports:

The full moon rose large and bright over Boise High School at the start of a solo Titus effort.

Started too darn fast

Lost speed as the day lost light

Finished too tired

I covered 13,855 meters on a 66 degree calm evening.

Mike Persick’s report of Andy Bove’s (PA) run:

Andy, as is the preference of the diminishing Pennsylvania contingent, put off his TVR run until as late as possible — the final few hours of the race window this year.  He met up with timers Ryan Savitz and Mike Persick at the Haverford College track on the evening of June 14.  A beautiful, cool, early summer day had turned dark and stormy-looking, though no rain had fallen all day.

Ryan delayed the start just a bit by locking his keys in his car.  He needed Andy’s help to get in touch with Triple-A, which promised to send a locksmith within 45 minutes or so.  Luckily, Ryan had his stopwatch and paper to record splits with him, outside the car.  A challenge was presented: could Andy finish a significant portion of the run before the locksmith arrived?  We hoped the guy would get there before the end of the hour.  Ryan proposed 10k as Andy’s goal to beat the locksmith.

Andy lined up alone and started the run.  Within the first few minutes, rain started to fall.  Luckily for the timers, Mike had brought an umbrella.  Ryan took thorough splits of every 400m plus each km on the other side of the track.  The rain got alternately harder and softer throughout the hour but only let up completely for one brief period before resuming.  After a few quick laps Andy fell into a steady rhythm of laps just under 93 seconds each on average, with kilometers steadily in the 3:51-3:52 range.  He passed 10k in 38:28, easily beating the locksmith.

With about 10 minutes to go, Andy picked up his pace.  Around this time, the locksmith arrived.  What he lacked in quick travel time he made up for with his lightning fast car break-in abilities.  In 30 seconds Ryan had his keys and was quickly back to the timers’ area.

Andy ran noticeably faster for his final 7 laps or so, quickening to 91 per lap and steadily faster to 84 for his last full lap (his 39th).  He continued on for the remainder of the hour to the first 400m hurdle mark, which we looked up and found is 45m past the starting line, giving him an impressive total of 15,645m.  He had passed 30 minutes at almost exactly 7800m, meaning he “negative-splitted” by about 50m.

Ryan had to take off soon after the finish, which helped save face for Mike, who had brought only 2 bottles of cherry soda!  Mike slogged off to his car, where Andy met him for the celebratory drink.  Then Andy headed off into the mist for his warm-down, feeling good about another year’s TVR.  Later, Andy offered these sage words of summary, “It seems like the run coincided with the one hour of rain all week.  Amusing.  My shoes are still drying outside.”

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