Tim Ritchie Named USATF New England Runner of the Year; Men's Open Team is 2013 USATF New England Grand Prix Champion
It is déjà vu all over again for Tim Ritchie
as he was honored by the USATF New England Association with his second consecutive Runner of the Year Award. This honor comes on the heels of another repeat award - that of being selected as New England Runner's
Athlete of the Year. He is featured in the January/February edition of the magazine.
If 2013 mimicked 2012 in terms of awards, the performances behind the honors were quite different. After a stellar track season in 2012 where Ritchie broke the 4-minute mark in the mile and raced in the record-setting indoor two mile, 2013 saw him turn his attention to the roads and, specifically, the marathon distance. In April, in his first attempt racing 26.2, Ritchie had a solid debut in 2:21:31 for 25th place overall, but it fell short of his goal. Undeterred, but smarter and more motivated, Ritchie continued to race on the roads throughout the year, focusing on the U.S. Marathon Championship hosted by Twin Cities in October and the U.S. National Road Championship 12k in Alexandria, VA in November.
As the year progressed, so did Ritchie's performances. After recovering from Boston, he shook things out at the Hollis Fast 5k New England Championship, winning the race in 13:47. Two weeks later, he was 4thin the US Half Marathon National Championship in Duluth, MN running a personal best 1:02:29. He went on to win the New England 5 Mile Championship hosted by the Carver Cranberry 5 Mile in late July. He followed that up with five top ten finishes in as many races between August and November. He was 9th at Falmouth, 8th at the US 20k National Championship in New Haven, 4th at US 5k National Championship in Providence, 6th at the US National Marathon Championship in St. Paul. MN and 6th at the US National Road Racing Championship 12k in Alexandria, VA. With each race, he widened the gap between himself and other top regional talent.
Of all the fall races, Ritchie's performance at the US Marathon Championship hosted by the win Cities Marathon demonstrated his ability at the distance. Posting a personal best by over 6 minutes, Ritchie took the lessons that he had learned at Boston and applied them well, crossing the line in 2:14:49. With an US Olympic Team Trials Men's Marathon 'A' qualifier in hand and two years to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Ritchie continues to develop into a contender. In the meantime, he is headed to his first US Championship of 2014 this week, where he has been tabbed as "One to Watch" in the 2014 US Half Marathon Championships on January 19th in Houston, TX.
Ritchie's success also trickled down to the B.A.A. Men's Open Team. With his wins at Hollis and Carver, Ritchie helped lead the men to team titles at both races; At the end of the seven-race series, the men were at the top of the leader board, taking the 2013 USATF New England Grand Prix crown.
Several individuals were also honored for their success in the USATF New England Grand Prix Series. Wayne Levy
was the series winner in the 45-49 age group category. Chris Magill
and Mimi Fallon
each took third in their respective age groups. Along the way, each took home some individual gold with Levy winning the 5 mile and 10k titles in the 45-49 division; Magill won the New Bedford Half Marathon and the Hollis 5k in the 40-44 age group and Fallon pulled off the hat-trick, going a perfect three for three, taking home the half marathon, 5k and 10k titles in her three USATF New England Grand Prix appearances. Other individual champions included Laura Brustolon
taking the women's open title in the marathon, hosted by the Manchester City Marathon in November and Chris Lawrence's
45-49 age group title at the 30k championship hosted by the Nahant 30k in September.
In all, the club combined for five team titles in 2013 with the men's open victories at the 5k and 5 mile, the women's open victory at the 30k and the men's masters’ wins at the half-marathon and 30k. The 2014 Series will open up at the Jones Realty Group 10 Mile in Amherst, MA on Sunday, February 23rd.
Go to the USATF New England website
for additional information.