Fernando Cabada Reclaims U.S. 25K Title

Fernando Cabada seized the lead in the file miles of the U.S. 25K Championships. Photo: PhotoRun.net

Fernando Cabada seized the lead in the final miles of the U.S. 25K Championships. Photo: PhotoRun.net

He won with a 28-second margin.

From: Running USA

by Jim Estes, USATF

GRAND RAPIDS – American Record holder Fernando Cabada (Boulder, Colo.) ran 1 hour, 15 minutes, 41 seconds to reclaim the men’s U.S. 25K title he last won in 2006; and Molly Pritz (Rochester Hills, Mich.) took her first U.S. championship crown, running 1:25:38 at the USA 25K Championships  on Saturday, May 14, 2011. The championships were hosted for the 18th year by the Fifth Third River Bank Run in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Cool, rainy conditions met the field at the start and from the gun, defending champion Andrew Carlson (Minneapolis, Minn.), Nick Arciniaga (Flagstaff, Ariz.), Josh Moen (Minneapolis, Minn.) and Cabada established themselves as the primary contenders with an opening mile of 4:39.

After Fasil Bizuneh (Flagstaff, Ariz.) joined the lead group at three miles, each of the five contenders took brief turns at the lead until Moen pressed the pace after a 5:00 seventh mile. With Moen’s push, the eighth mile was covered in 4:47 and Bizuneh and Arciniaga quickly dropped off the pace.

From nine to 11 miles, Cabada, Moen and Carlson each took brief turns at the lead. As the trio made their way up a steady uphill, Cabada began his push, opening a five meter gap. By 12 miles, he had increased his lead to 50 meters.

Over the final miles, Cabada increased his lead to score a 28 second win over Moen, who finished in 1:16:09. Carlson took third in 1:16:35, Arciniaga finished fourth in 1:17:22 and Matt Gabrielson (Saint Louis Park, Minn.) moved up to claim fifth in 1:17:50.

In the women’s race, Pritz took charge from the start and cruised to a three minute win over her Hansons-Brooks teammate Dot McMahan (Rochester Hills, Mich.). Jeannette Faber (Somerfield, Mass.) took third in 1:28:48 and Kristen Zaitz (Broomfield, Colo.) and Jennifer Houck (Bloomington, Minn.) rounded out the top-five in 1:29:16 and 1:30:06 respectively.

Race organizers said that it was the first time that the 25K did not have a foreign runner. Nine foreign runners canceled in the days leading up to the race.

There were 20,475 runners entered in the weekend’s events, which also included a 10K, 5K, 5K walk and youth events.

Video highlights of the USA 25K Championships are available in cooperation with RunnerSpace.com at www.USARunningCircuit.com.

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