Saturday, August 30, 2014

Leer and Grunewald Help Team USA Win DecaNation Championship in France

Will Leer and Gabe Grunewald helped the US team eek out a two point win in the team competition over host France on Saturday.  Leer was second in the 1500 in 4:10.68.  Team USA Minnesota's Grunewald finished fourth in the 800 in 2:07.8.  Full results are HERE. Team scores HERE.

Photo Essay: Brit's Pub Vault Underway

The pit is in. The hair is ready.  The sun is out.  The vaulters are flying at the Brit's Pub Vault.

Photos courtesy of TCTC and Mike McCarthy

Friday, August 29, 2014

News: Irish Invite; MIAC XC Preview

Boy's pack at the Irish Invite. Photo by Lance Elliott
Irish Invite boy's results are HERE.  Girl's are HERE.

MIAC XC preview is HERE.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Kids City Cross League: Learning to Love Running

Coach Ilse Renner running a warm up with the Como team.
Photo by Tyler Morey
Twin Cities Track Cub’s Mike Reneau is not only an accomplished athlete, he’s a person with big ideas.  This weekend’s Brit’s Pub Vault is one of those ideas, another is the Kids City Cross League.that is designed to provide resources for developing both athletic talent and, hopefully, the beginning of a life-long love for running among grade school children in Minneapolis and St. Paul. 

In addition to being elite runners, Reneau and Gopher grad Stephanie Price, who is the program’s volunteer coordinator, also coach high school athletes.  They observed that there is a disparity of resources within the inner cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul compared to the suburbs.  While suburban schools often have “feeder programs” that provide the opportunity for young athletes to get a head start on learning the skills necessary for success in their sport.  

The inner city kids don't get started in running until later, if at all.  "It's not that there is a lack of talent, it's a lack of opportunity." says Price

Soccer, football, basketball, baseball, and hockey, to name a few, all have youth programs, but there weren’t development/teaching programs for distance runners, said Reneau. Until now.  Thanks to a grant from Pepsico, TCTC has been able to launch the Kids City Cross League this summer. Running has the advantage of not needing lots of equipment to play, says Reneau. All you need is a park. 

Bryn Mawr team photo with coaches Ben Merchant(far left in white hat)
and Karl Heinzerling(on the far right in black shirt).
 Reneau had originally planned to start with the league with eight teams, but they got a late start.   and decided to begin with three teams instead--Como Park, Bryn Mawr, and Kingfield. Each team is supplied with the basics, said Price. Starting with a measuring wheel, a simple tool that shows the kids how courses are created and that they are a set distance. You can create short, medium, or long distances.  All you need are flags and cones to keep the runners on that newly measured course.  The cones have dual functionality in that they can also be used to mark an agility course for use doing drills that build strength in the legs and feet.

Each team has batons for relay events, emphasizing team building and having some fun.  Having fun being an important element for young kids.  Sometimes, Reneau says,  sometimes you have to trick the kids to get them started, introduce an element of play or a game, making the association  between running and fun.

For example, Elizabeth Yetzer, who is one of the coaches for the Como team, gets the kids going by playing a game.  "Gallop like the horses" being one of the fun drills taking advantage of the fact that they are based at Como Park where there is a zoo.

They are learning.  It's not all fun and games.  Each of the young runners gets a notebook and pen to record their workouts, and the times achieved in periodic time trials and/or races.  Each team also has first aid kits, stop watches, a water cooler,  flags, and all the runners get special Kids Cross League T-Shirts.

Coaches Missa Morey (green shirt) and Elizabeth Yetzer
(purple pants) under the rainbow. Photo by Tyler  Morey
The program goes through October 9 when the teams will compete against one another on Como Golf Course. "We hope the kids develop a love for running," says Price. A love they can experience for the rest of their life.

News: Mead Ends Season in Zurich; Top Returnees in NCAA DII;

Hassan Mead finishes seventeenth in 13:41.80 at the Weltklasse Meet in Zurich. "Ugly way to end the season. Not the way I wanted to end it but I had some good once along the ride." Mead wrote on Twitter.

USTFCCCA preview of the NCAA DII top female returnees HERE. Men

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

News: Canby/Minneota; Waseca; Eden Prairie girls; Luverne/HLO/Martin County West/Worthington, etc.; UNC; St Olaf Men Picked to Repeat as DIII Champs; NCAA DI National Rankings; Grand Canyon Run

Marshall Independent on the Canby/Minneota win at the Lakeview Invite HERE

Waseca County News rates Waseca boy's team "by the numbers" HERE and New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva HERE

Sun Current previews the upcoming season for the  the Eden Prairie girls XC team HERE

Worthington Globe pre season article on Luverne, Heron Lake-Okabena, Mountain County West and other area teams   HERE and HERE. Worthngton HS preview HERE.

Park Rapids Enterprise preview for the  United North Central  boy's and girl's teams HERE and the Park Rapids boy's and girl's teams HERE

St Olaf men's defending NCAA DIII champs are ranked number one in the USTFCCCA pre-season poll HERE.  Carleton and St. Thomas also ranked in the top 35.  Women's DIII national rankings are HERE.  Three MIAC teams are in the top 35.

NCAA DI pre-season national rankings for women HERE, men HERE. Gopher women ranked 25th.

Thinking of running the Grand Canyon?  New rules in force including applying for a special use permit. Info HERE.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

News: NXN Predictions for HS Girl's and Boy's Team Races; Perham; Springfield/Cedar Mtn Inv; USTFCCCA NCAA DIII Regional Rankings; Peyton; NSIC XC Coaches Rankings; Sprinters

Wayzata girl's picked by MileSplit to finish third at NXN after winng the title last year HERE.  Wayzata boys are named for fourth HERE.

Perham Focus coverage of the Perham girl's and boy's teams win season openers HERE.

Worthington Daily Globe summary of Springfield/Cedar Mountain  Invitational HERE.

USTFCCCA NCAA DIII Regional rankings are HERE. Four MIAC teams led by defending national champs St. Olaf are in the top ten for men.  Five MIAC teams led by Carleton plus UMAC's St. Scholastica in top ten for the women.

New Haven Register article on Team USA Minnesota's Meghan Peyton, the defending USATF women's 20K champ at the New Haven 20K, which is run on Labor Day HERE

NSIC coaches pre-season XC rankings HERE.

Some of the physical gifts and adaptations of the top sprinters is discovered HERE

Monday, August 25, 2014

News: Strib HS XC Preview; Heart Risks for Marathoners; USTFCCCA Pre-season NCAA DI Region Rankings; Top Women Returnees for DIII;

HS XC Preview HERE, top ten to watch in boy's and girl's HS XC HERE.

Dr. Paul Thompson is an internationally renowned cardiologist who is also a talented marathoner.  He talks about the issues raised recently about the potential risks of marathoning HERE.

St. Olaf's  Noelle Olson leads the women returnees
USTFCCCA pre-season NCAA DI regional rankings has Minnesota women ranked third in the Midwest Region, men are eighth HERE. For DIII the top returning women are listed HERE.  St. Olaf's Noelle Olson, who finished second last season is the top[ returnee.  Macalster's Kimber Meyer is also among the top 15.  DIII men's preview is HERE. St. Ola's Grant Wintheiser is the top returnee for the defending DIII team champions.  Bethel's Matt Berens; St. Olaf's Jake Brown and Jake Campbell are among the top 15.
Grant Wintheiser, Matt Berens, and Jake Brown are the top five

First Brit's Pub Vault Offers $5000 Purse for the Pros, Plus Fund Raising for Olympic Hopefuls

The Twin Cities Track Club will be offering a $5000 total cash prize purse for the First Annual Brit’s Pub Vault at Brit’s Pub in downtown Minneapolis on August 30. The prize money is available to vaulters competing in the professional competition at the end of the evening. 

“We have some of the best pole vaulters in the country coming to compete in Minneapolis,” said event director Jack Szmanda. “These are competitors and great athletes, and I have no doubt they will put on a show for the spectators at Brit’s. Hopefully this money will help these athletes as they continue to train and pursue their Olympic aspirations.”

Brit’s Pub will also donate $1.00 for every pint of Summit Beer served during the competition to support the athletes in their journey towards Rio in 2016. The money will be added to a general fund to be distributed evenly to the vaulters in the professional competition. 

For more information about the Brit’s Pub Vault and individual athlete bios, visit the official website at

The Twin Cities Track Club Foundation is incorporated as a non-profit with the state of Minnesota with the mission of promoting health & wellness in the community through running, road-racing, and track & field. For more information about the Twin Cities Track Club Foundation and the programs it supports, please visit

Sunday, August 24, 2014

News: Milk Run; East Ridge HS Girl's XC;

State Fari Milk Run royalty. Guess which one won the women's race.
State Fair Milk Run results for men HERE, women HERE.

Strib story on the East Ridge girl's HS XC team HERE.

Špotáková 2nd, Grunewald 11th in Birmingham IAAF Diamond League Meet

Gopher grads Barbora Špotáková and Gabe Grunewald finished second, and eleventh, respectively, in their events at the Sainsberry's Birmingham Grand Prix meet on Sunday.  Špotáková threw the javelin 62.89m/206' 3.98".  Team USA Minnesota's Grunewald ran 9:41.76 for two miles. Javelin results are HERE.  Two mile is HERE.  "Not what I was hoping for in my 1st race over for the 2nd half, but know that there is more to come. Excited for some cool races coming up!" Grunewald wrote on Twitter.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

News: Stillwater Twi-Light Meet; Ely Track Club; Earlybird Invite XC; Red Wing HS; Gopher PVer Katie Murgic

Stillwater Gazette reports on Stillwater HS Twi-light Meet as top two finishers break the meet record  HERE.

Duluth News Tribune mention of Ely Track Club Fundraiser Trail Run and Walk on September 6 HERE.

Worthington Globe report on the Earlybird Invitational XC meet HERE.

Red Wing Republican Eagle on Red Wing HS's boys and girls XC teams HERE

U of M interview with Gopher Pole Vaulter Katie HERE.

Edina boys' Mile Time Trial results are HERE. Alumni meet results HERE. Edina girls' alumni meet results are HERE.

Wayzata boys' Alumni Meet Age Group Winners: L to R:
Manny Day, Kirt Goetzke, Kurt Almquist,
Jacob Hallen, Josh Thorson, and Connor Olson
Results HERE.

Peyton 14th in Crim 10 Mile

Team USA Minnesota's Meghan Peyton finished 14th in the Crim 10 Mile women's field on Saturday. "In the midst of heavy marathon training, toughed out the 10 miler this 58:19." was the message from Team USA Minnesota on Twitter. Searchable results are HERE.

Friday, August 22, 2014

News: NCAA DI Women's XC Preview; Maria Hauger; Young Athletes "Cashing in" on Fame

USTFCCCA look at the top female NCAA DI runners returning from 2014
USTFCCCA DI preview for NCAA DI women.  Emma Bates top finisher among those returning from the 2014 Championships HERE.

In Virginia the University of Virginia women's team has their athletes on posters on lamp poles, including Shakopee grad Maria Hauger
University of Virginia /Hauger
Little League pitcher Mo'ne Davis. She's 13. She's in the national spotlight.  NYT asks: Should she "cash in" on her fame?  Lose her amateur status?  Interesting debate in the shadow of the NCAA legal cases regarding renumeration for college athletes.  Will it extend down to junior high school? HERE

Kampf Second in Michigan Women's Pro Mile, Finnerty Third in Men's Race

Nicole Sifuentes sprints past Heather Kampf at the finish of the
Michigan Mile
Team USA Minnesota's Heather Kampf finished second to Canada's Nicole Sifuentes in the Michigan Mile Friday night. Sifuentes time was 4:44.13. Kampf finished in 4:44.24. Results are HERE.

"Tough to lose one at the line but props to on a perfectly executed race!" wrote Kampf on Twitter.
"Very happy with my 1st win of the season at tonight" Sifuentes wrote on Twitter.
Rob Finnerty finished third in the men's pro race in 4:12.46. Results are HERE.
They're off at the start of the Michigan Mile. Sifuentes(far right), Kampf(15)
Pictures and story HERE.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Mead 6th in 13:07 in Stockholm; Waseca; Goucher "Trending;" Rochester Races; Eagan's LaChance & Van Wyk; Maple Grove's Dickerson; Drug Test Data

Hassan Mead runs 13:07.81 for sixth in the Stockholm DN Galan Meet. Result is HERE.

Waseca County News article on the Waseca HS XC teams and their current "streak" HERE.

Third Kara Goucher article this week.  She must be "trending." HERE.  And then there's Kara's blog HERE.

Rochester Post-Bulletin on the Mayo Clinic, Rochester Track Club, and the City of Rochester combining  for the Mayo Clinic Human Race weekend running events and clinics HERE.

Strib on Eagan HS XC runners Anna Van Wyk HERE, Bailey LaChance HERE. Maple Grove's Mitchell Dickerson HERE.

Drug testing stats for all sports HERE. Comparison between 2012-13, number of blood tests done per sport.