Sunday, November 4, 2007

Here's how the guys from the state of Washington did at the US Olympic Marathon Trials...

NEW YORK--2007 University of Washington standout Mike Sayenko (above, /photo by Paul Merca) was the top finisher among runners with Washington state ties competing at the US Olympic Trials-Men's Marathon Saturday in New York's Central Park.

Sayenko crossed the finish in a personal best time of 2:18.35, good for 29th place.

Ten seconds and one place behind Sayenko was former Mercer Island High School standout Donnie Fellows, also in a personal best.

Sayenko & Fellows were two of 39 men under 2:20, the most sub-2:20 in the race since the 1980 marathon trials in Buffalo.

Sean Sundwall of Snoqualmie, who qualified for the Olympic Trials marathon four weeks earlier at the St George marathon in Utah, finished 90th in 2:30:41.

Mike Heidt from Shoreline did not finish, dropping out sometime after the 30-kilometer mark.

After the race, Sayenko said, “It was a great experience. It’s so loud out here on the west side. It really got the adrenalin going. I felt good. I loved Central Park—it's a good course”.

“I wanted to go out conservative and pick people off. I was running on pace—5:10 to 5:15 pace for the first half. I knew that people were going to come back.”

Sundwall (above, /photo by Paul Merca), who qualified for this race only four weeks earlier at the St. George Marathon in Utah with a personal best of 2:18:55, said, “Normally I would be disappointed with my time, but this is a chance of a lifetime for me. It was a thrill to be running with the nation’s best. I’m 34 years old, and this is probably it for me.”

“I really started to feel (the effects of the St George marathon) at about 17 miles. During the four-week recovery after the race (in which he qualified with a personal best of 2:18:55), I felt ok. On the last lap, I knew I was in trouble.”

When asked on preparing for the Trials with miniscule recovery time, he said that he ran about 75 miles in the first week, then dropped the mileage down to the mid-50s.

“I did a series of speed workouts, and I felt fine. I’m getting too old to do two marathons in four weeks.”

Sayenko and Sundwall each posted blogs describing the run to the Trials. You can read Mike's blog here, and Steve's here...

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