The Weekend That Was: Tokyo Marathon, Teddy Twilight, Champoeg 10K, Linfield Icebreaker

On the first weekend of March, Rose City Track Club represented on the roads from Oregon to Tokyo, and on the track from McMinnville to Portland.

Tokyo Marathon

March 3rd – In Tokyo, Alejandro Fallas’s consistency and perseverance in training paid off in a big way. He wrote, “Got the perfect conditions to run a marathon this last weekend in Tokyo, mid-50s, light rain, and a really fast course. I tried to run consistent splits and managed to get a 2 mins and 40 secs PR, breaking 2:40.”

Fallas’s previous PR of 2:42:20 had been set at the California International Marathon in 2017. He went on to run the 2018 Boston Marathon in arguably one of the worst possible weather outcomes, and the 2018 NYC Marathon in which he battled some stomach issues. As marathoners know, it’s rare to get a day (let alone a training cycle) where everything lines up just right. In Tokyo, Fallas got just that kind of day and seized the opportunity.

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Fallas received special mention from Anthony Porras, a sports journalist from Costa Rica, on his marathon accomplishments as a native of San Ramón, Costa Rica. Porras wrote, “His way of being is low-profile; but it is clear that he is an example of the amateur athlete who is going to have great sports results.” Fallas placed first among Costa Rican athletes in the Tokyo Marathon.

Linfield Icebreaker

March 1st & 2nd – On a chilly Friday evening, Liz Anjos ran the 10K on the track at the Erik Anderson Memorial Icebreaker meet hosted by Linfield College. She took the lead at the start and went on to win with a new track PR in 37:46. Anjos wrote, “Racing 10K on the track is such a mental battle! I tried not to psyche myself out and hang tough in the second half. This gave me a lot of confidence going into the NYC Half in a couple weeks.”

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Coach Greg Mitchell and Liz Anjos

The next day, training partners Lucy Brookham and Ashley Meagher raced the 1500m, placing 3rd in 4:57 and 4th in 5:11, respectively. Meagher wrote, “I was looking at this race as a measure of progress in my training for the Carlsbad 5000 in April. I feel like I ran smart, and maybe could have pushed my pace a bit in that third lap. Regardless, I’m happy that I had a solid kick the last 200m and improved my time by about ten seconds from my last race. Also, what a beautiful day to race!”

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Ashley Meagher racing the Linfield Icebreaker 1500m

Teddy Twilight

March 2nd – At the all-comers Teddy Twilight Meet in Portland, RCTC put together a women’s 4×400, women’s DMR, and co-ed 4×800 relay teams. For most teammates, it was an opportunity to get out of their comfort zone, try something new, and do something fun together as a team.

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Lucy Brookham following her 1500/1600 double

Lucy Brookham, who had raced the 1500m earlier in the day at the Linfield Icebreaker Meet before anchoring the women’s DMR wrote, “There’s something about running for my teammates that has always made me raise my game. It’s been a long road back to feeling myself again, but this weekend, doubling the 1500m and mile leg of the DMR in one day, I felt more myself than I have in a long time. On tired legs and into freezing winds I took off with the baton on the anchor leg of the DMR, with every stride I tried to catch everyone in front of me, believing to the very end I could still catch the leaders. We finished 4th in a large field of teams with each one of us running awesome legs in brutal conditions.”

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Lauren Ross (above, center) took on both the 4×400 and 800 leg of the DMR. “I’ve never raced either a 400 or an 800, and certainly have not been training short and fast lately. But having my teammates around made it extra fun and not nearly as scary as I had thought!”

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Teresa Stackhouse (above) raced the 1200 leg of the DMR and the 4×800. “Saturday night was a blast getting in some fast running under the lights at the Teddy Twilight. Although it was a frigid evening, I loved the nostalgia of passing a baton and getting out-kicked by teenagers!”

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Rachel Wysocki, seen above attempting to get warm between events, was the brave soul to take on three relays! She wrote, “Getting back on the track for a race for my first time since college was a dream! I felt so much support and camaraderie from my teammates and friends that I was sufficiently fulfilled by the end of the night without even knowing a single split time. That was a great mental shift for me this weekend, just have fun with it and let the progress be a byproduct.”

Emma Notario, who ran the 4×400, wrote, “Racing on a HS track with a bunch of teenagers in the freezing cold was a lot more fun than I thought! I haven’t held a baton in a relay in 30 years and it brought back some great memories!”

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Brooks Barth (above) took the first leg of the co-ed 4×800. “I have no experience racing track, but definitely underestimated my ability to break 2:30 in the 800 [editor’s note: he finished in 2:27]. Also – there were some super fast high school bros in that heat!”

Champoeg 10K

Meanwhile in Champoeg, OR, teammates Marla Smith, Leah Drebin, and Krysta Gunvalson opted to race the 10K on the roads. They worked together on the course and took the top 3 spots among overall women.

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Marla Smith cruising to 1st place at the Champoeg 10K

Leah wrote, “I was using the race as a rust-buster and definitely did not expect to PR, but sometimes a little magic can happen on race day. I took 25 seconds off my PR and placed 2nd overall. The results have given me some positive assurance that I’m on the right path with my training and journey back from injury.”

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Leah (left) and Krysta working together at the Champoeg 10K

Krysta wrote, “I jumped into the Champoeg 10K last minute to bust the rust for the upcoming NYC Half Marathon and am so glad that I did. It was an excellent workout on a picture perfect day–I even finished 3rd overall female behind my teammates who took the 1-2 and ran a big PR. Bring it on, NYC!”

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