2001 USATF 100 km Championship
Hosted by GNC Ultras
Pittsburgh, PA
March 24, 2001

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Welcome to the 2001 USA National 100 km Championship, hosted by the GNC Ultras! We are at a new location in downtown Pittsburgh, PA, this year! Updates will be made throughout the race at this location and the current standings will be loaded in the frame below.

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Live Updates and Race Coverage will be loaded in this space during the race. Prior to the race, please check here for important USATF 100 km Championship information.

UPDATE: Friday evening....

Tracy Rose is back in the field!  Last year's bronze medalist appears to have worked out her quadriceps problem and made a last-minute decision to head north, hopeful that the problem would not resurface during the race.

Mother nature, however, is back to making things tough for her and the rest of the field.  After a sunny Friday with temperatures near 50 degreesF, the weather forecast now predicts heavy winds with a 50% chance of rain showers, turning to snow, with a possible accumulation of an inch.

Saturday, March 24,2001
6:00 AM: The temperature has not dropped since last evening.  We are sitting here in the dark, under cloudy skies and a moderately cool temperature of 42 degreesF.  The forecast is still for falling temperatures, strong winds, and precipitation.

We are operating out of the Cycstic Fibrosis office here in downtown Pittsburgh. Thank you CF Foundation!

The race will start in just over an hour.  Stay tuned here as we run throughout the day.

7:15 AM: AND THEY'RE OFF!!  Under a cloudy sky, next to the Allegeny River, the race started with the crack of a starter's pistol just 15 minutes ago. In the men's race, Jim Garcia took the early lead, passing the 1-mile point in just over 6:30.  He is being followed closely back a pack of men, including Mike Harrison, Bob Sweeney, Rich Hanna, and Kevin Setnes.

The women have started off at a conservative pace, running through the first mile in approximately 7:45. The pack is being led by Ann Heaslett and Patti Shepard, running together.  They are followed by Daniele Cherniak and Anne Riddle, running in tandem 15 seconds back.

We wil attempt to keep you posted on at least an hourly basis for our base at the CCF office in downtown Pittsburgh.

7:50 AM: The leader board will be updated with the top men's and women's times throughout the rest of the day. To ensure fast results, I am limiting the lists to last name and split time only.  Please refer to the list of entrants should you require more information.  We will try to get the 50km split for the whole field and place those times on the leader board as they become available.

As you can see below with the women's race, it is a tight race in the early going with several runners running in a pack to help break a very stiff wind.

8:25 AM: The weather continues to be the main story in this race.  The runners are battling a strong head wind for almost half the course, and it seems to be taking its toll.  The lead women's pack continues to set a steady pace, with the top 5 women remaining together after 10 miles in 1:17:52.  Shortly behind, in 6th, Patti Shepard has dropped off her early lead and is now running alone.

The men's field continues to be led at 10 miles by Rudy Afandor, from Medford, NY (1:04:04).  He has opened a 15-second lead over the second pack of men consisting of Harrison, Garcia, and Hanna (1:04:18).  Sweeney and Setnes follow closely in 6th and 7th overall (1:04:34). The real story in the men's race over the last 5 miles, however, is the pace of Scott Jurek.  He is looking strong and has pulled away from Godale for 8th place, in a time of 1:05:21.

The women's race continues to be led at 15 miles (1:57:03) by a pack of women's runners, several of whom are relatively new to the national-caliber ultra scene.  After 15 miles, the women continue to be led by newcomer Patti Shepard from Penrose, NC, who is participating in her first ultra.  Even though Shepard is a newcomer to the ultra scene, she won last year's Myrtle Beach marathon.

The lead pack also consists of Mary Coordt, a 2:48 marathoner running her first ultra; Nikki Kimball, a sub-3 hour marathoner and winner of the Vermont 50 for the last two years (7:47 last year), and the Escarpment Trail Run last year; Jody Lynn Reicher, who holds a sub-36 minute 10km and was one of the top short distance runners in New Jersey in the early 1990's prior to suffering injury; and Ann Heaslett, yet another of Wisconsin's trail ultrarunners.

The lead pack of women is being trailed closely by Daniele Cherniak and Anne Riddle (1:57:32).  Riddle is running her first 100km run, but finished 3rd in the JFK 50 last November.

Jim Garcia, after biding his time behind the quick start of Rudy Afanador, has taken the men's lead at 20 miles in 2:09:24.  He is narrowly outrunning a pack of 4 men (Jurek, Hanna, Harrison, Sweeney) who have been in the hunt for the top prize since the beginning of the morning.  It is obvious that the strong gusty wind is taking a toll on the runners, many of whom are likely wishing that the conditions would improve.  Surprising the field with a slower-than-normal start was Scott Jurek, from Washington State, who has turned up the burners and is running a calm -- and very fast -- pace. He appears to have settled in nicely and is slowly making his way through the top pack.

This is, unarguably, one of the best men's fields ever assembled at the National championship.  Even though the weather, location, and other pursuits have kept others away from Pittsburgh this weekend, the field that is competing is highly competitive and likely to remain close to each other throughout the rest of the day.

9:48AM Patti Shepard has broken free of the women's pack and leads the filed by almost 1-minute at the 20-mile mark, crossing 20 miles in just over 2:34. 

10:30AM: Shepard continues to lead the women's race by about 30 seconds.  She passed the 25-mile mark in 3:15:03.  Kimball, Coordt, and Reicher passed that mark at 3:15:35, still running in a close pack.  The big news on the women's side is the loss of Daniele Cherniak, who spent a few minutes getting a massage after 20 miles, but has since retired due to injury.

The men's field continues to spread out, but the top trio of Garcia, Harrison, and Hanna continue to run together.  They passed through 30 miles at 3:15:14, and have just passed through the 50km split.

Almost as a sign that the race is half finished for the men, Mother Nature has begun to bless the field with a cold drizzle that is putting an additional damper on the race conditions.  Even though we are freezing in the wind at the scoring tent, the runners say that the wind is not a significant factor and is not contributing to the cold.  We are beginning to see a few more shorts on the runners now that the morning is in full swing, but long sleeves and tights remain the dress of the day for the majority of the field.

We will get 50km splits for the whole field and post them in the window below as they are transferred to us.

11:20AM: Multiple-time USA National Team member Kevin Setnes has withdrawn from the race after completing 50km.  The men's race is looking like it is coming down to a race for third place between Bob Sweeney, Mark Godale, and Scott Jurek.  Who will hang on to win the bronze medal??

After 35 miles, the men's duo of Garcia and Hanna has pulled away from the rest of the men's field.  They are working together, fighting forces against the ever-changing weather.  We are getting mixed precipitation and (believe it or not) brief bouts of sunshine.  The temperature has held steady since this morning, a nice 41 degreesF.  That is much better than we thought we'd get after hearing forecasts last night.

The women's pack has now completely split apart.  The field is led at 50km by Patti Shepard, who's been setting the pace of the field all morning.

11:55AM: There have been some major developments in both races over the last 5 miles:

In the men's race, Bob Sweeney has surged ahead of Garcia and Hanna to take a 30-second lead on the men's field.  He passed 40 miles in 4:22:39.  While Hanna and Garcia continue in their pace, they are no longer working together. There is a 10-second differnetial bewteen Hanna, running in second (4:23:17) and Garcia (4:23:27).

The women's race also has a new leader. Tracey Rose has taken charge on the distaff side, passing 35 miles in 4:35:01.  Shepard, the early leader, has faded by close to a minute over the last trek of this 5 mile circuit, though it is unclear at this point as to exactly why.

Stay tuned for further developments in what is turning out to be a very exciting race!

1:00PM: The women's race continues to be neck-and neck!  Rose and Coordt are running shoulder to shoulder at the 45-mile point, crossing the line in 5:55:23.  They are running strong and look confident, well aware that they are being stalked by a fierce competitor, Ann Riddle. Riddle has been training under ultra great, Kevin Setnes, who describes her as a fierce competitor who doesn't like to let a close race get out of her hands.  Right now, Riddle is a mere 24 seconds off the lead.  As the race gets into its later stages, however, Riddle enters uncharted territory.  Will she be able to make a move this late in the game -- at a distance she's never run before?

1:10PM: GARCIA LOOKS STRONG.  One of the things Jim Garcia wants is a National Championship.  After having a bad 5-mile loop a couple of hours ago, Garcia has regained his strength and is looking like the man to beat.  After 50 miles, he leads the rest of the men's field by over 2 minutes, passing the 50 mile marker in 5:36:12.  Bob Sweeney, who briefly took control of the race appears content to coast in the silver medal position right now (5:38:55).  Hanna holds on tight to 3rd (5:40:00).  Also in the last hour, Michael Harrison has retired from the race.  

1:15PM: BIG NEWS ON THE WOMEN'S FRONT.  Mary Coordt, from Elk Grove, CA, who has led most of the way in the lead women's pack, has dropped out of the race following the recurrence of a previous injury.  This moves Ann Riddle into second place. Nikki Kimball is now in 3rd...

1:45PM: The top men have passed the 55 mile mark.  Garcia holds a commanding lead and will, barring any unforeseen circumstances, win the gold medal.  It is looking like his finish time will be around 7:05.  He passed through 55 miles in 6:12:52.

The real battle now for the men is for the silver.  Sweeney and Hanna are now still running neck-and-neck (6:18:28 Hanna; 6:18:55 Sweeney), as they have for most of the day.  They have a firm posotion on the remaining two National team slots.  Godale is running in 4th (6:29:11), Jurek (6:31:51) 5th, and Torrence (6:38:20) 6th.

1:55PM: The women's race continues to be exciting as Ann Riddle has taken the lead from Tracey Rose.  They have surpassed the 50 mile point in 6:35:54 and 6:36:22, respectably.  Both of these women are tough competitors, but have appeared to have planned their race well.  Both have conserved their strength.  Nikki Kimball leads the run for the bronze, passing 50 miles in a tough 6:48:03, over 6 minutes ahead of Chrissy Ferguson.

Stay tuned for the men's winner...


Jim Garcia, 42, from Westford, MA, takes home the title of National 100km 
Champion after a superb 7:05:58 finish at the 
USA National 100km Championship


Anne Riddle, 34, from Asheville, NC, becomes National Champion in her first 100km
race with a finish time of 8:13:57 at the USA National 100km Championship.


3:40PM: We have received word that Tracey Rose has dropped out of the race due to her re-occurring leg injury.  Earlier this week, she had decided NOT to even start the race, but changed her mind at the last minute.  Even though she didn't complete the whole distance, she still set a 50-mile PR of 6:36:22 and gave the rest of the women's field a "runfor their money."  Congratulations to Tracey for an excellent performance while not completely healthy!  We are expecting Nikki Kimball to finish shortly...


6:00PM: We only have a couple of runners left on the course, all of whom will finish the race. Bill Ladieu, Ed Rousseau, and Tim Yanachek are in there last couple of miles.  We are currently working on scoring the team competition and hope to report later this evening after all of the times have been reviewed on the winner of the regional competition, the club team competition, and the master's age group awards.

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