WILLIAMSBURG—Who was the better runner, Andy Goodstein or Victor Flemming, last Saturday at the third annual Powhatan Creek Trail 5K Run? That depends on your criteria, but it was quite close either way.
The two hammered each other on the somewhat hilly, but very scenic and shaded, out-and-back course, starting and finishing at Clara Byrd Baker Elementary School in the 12th of 23 races in the 2014 Colonial Road Runners Grand Prix series.
Goodstein, 23, of Williamsburg, pulled away late in the race, timed in a course record 16:17. Flemming, 35, of Carrollton, was just eight seconds behind in 16:25, also well under the previous mark. The men's race record had been 16:58, run in 2012 by 2013 Lafayette High School student Kurtis Steck, now a rising William and Mary sophomore. Third and fourth places went to previous CRR men's Grand Prix champions Todd Kessler (2011 and 2013 winner) in 17:48 and Powhatan Creek Trail 5K race director Greg Dawson (2012 winner) in 18:11.
Another way to judge race performance is by age-graded formulas, which factors both the age and sex of the runners, with the 80% level considered the minimum for national class status. Four runners separated themselves from the rest, with Flemming winning with an 80.28% rating, followed quite closely by Dawson (79.82%), 53-year-old Ken Alberg of Suffolk (19:01 for 79.46%) and Goodstein (79.22%).
There were 97 finishers in the 5K this year, down slightly from the 112 finishers in 2013.
Goodstein, a 2013 W&M graduate, broke the course record by 41 seconds. Goodstein and Flemming had previously met in April's Run the D.O.G. Street 5K, where Goodstein was fifth overall in 15:53, and Flemming was ninth overall in 16:31.
For the women, Heather LaVallee, 20, of Denville, N.J., currently doing physics research at W&M, won in 20:46. LaVallee, a student at Brockport College (N.Y) has a 5K PR of 18:24, and plans on running a 5K race in all 50 states. Emily Honeycutt, 23, of West Point, a W&M graduate soon to teach math at Jamestown High School, was second in 21:38, and Percie Lyons, 17, of Kailua, Hi, visiting relatives in the area, was third in 21:46. The women's course record remains 19:33 by 2012 winner Jennifer Quarles of Williamsburg.
Goodstein, Flemming, Kessler, Alberg, LaVallee and Lyons all broke race age-group records, as did 51-year-old Scott Stakes of Portsmouth (men's race walk, 30:48), Frankie Riggs, 12, of Surry (women 14-and-under, 23:48), Jessica Burcham, 32, of Lanexa (women 30-34, 21:49), and Candice Michalik, 66, of Williamsburg (28:32).
After slightly more than half the 2014 Grand Prix races, three men have separated themselves from the pack, with Flemming (79 points) followed closely by past champion Kessler (67 points), and Dawson (59).
For the women, the top four in the 2014 CRR Grand Prix are Debbie McLaughlin (75 points), Honeycutt (also 75), six-time champion Quarles (58) and Burcham (56), although the scoring is done by the top ten races, and Honeycutt and Burcham have run more races than the other two.
More – Race results on page 2B.