Cape Elizabeth, ME. — The 17th TD Beach to Beacon 10K produced gut churning races and personal bests galore despite humidity that was as thick as a Downeast Mainers accent in the hometown to race founder Joan Benoit Samuelson.
While calling the race from the men’s lead vehicle I had my trusty Sony camera in hand, and though I’m no Victah in terms of photog excellence, the pics below at least capture some of the intensity on display. With the Lobster Bake still on the evening docket, I’ll have to wait till the morrow to write a more complete appraisal of the day’s events. Till then…
Ready to Roll near Crescent Beach State Park
The goal, Portland Head Light at Fort Williams Park, oldest commissioned light house in America
Race Founder Joan Benoit Samuelson addresses the field. Kenya’s Bedan Karoki leads them out, 4:20 first mile. North Yarmouth, Maine native Ben True hangs with the pack. Training partner Sam Chelanga up front #7. Pack well formed with Karoki stating his case early
Two miles 8:49, 4:29 split. #6 Bedan Karoki, #14 Stephen Kibet, #7 Sam Chelanga, #1 defending champion Micah Kogo, stiped shirt Patrick Makau, hidden behind Kogo is Emmanuel Bett with Ben True holding strong. Two year 4th placer Stephen Kibet, #14, moves into front row. Kibet and Karoki pull away on return to Rte. 77 after 13:43 5K split on Old Ocean House Road, Ben True and Patrick Makau behind
Kibet pressuring Karoki with True and Patrick Makau in 3rd and 4th. Kibet was 4th in 2013 and 2012, 2nd in 2010. Karoki has Pr’d at 5000, 10,000, and half marathon in 2014, winning World’s Best 10k and Lisbon Half among others. Heading toward 4 miles Strung out along Shore Road, Kibet on the accelerator Joanie’s likeness adorns the Portland Head Light, two of the most famous icons in Maine. Ben True in 3rd 4 miles passes in 17:38, 4:23 4th mile. Ben True hanging tought along Shore Road. Kibet trying like mad to put some distance on Karoki. The battle joined The intensity of full out racing rages between Karoki and Kibet. Toya and our host family, Bill and Linda Nickerson await at the finish with Meb’s wife Yordanos just behind with daughters Sara and Fiyori and Yohana. After a 4:18 5th mile set him free Bedan Karoki continues his hot streak winning 2014 B2B in 27:37, third fastest in race history. Stephen Kibet done in by his effort, second place for the second time at B2B 27:43 a new PR. Dartmouth grad Ben True powers home in 3rd in 27:50, continuing his ascent toward the top. It’s the fastest 10K by an American since Mark Nenow in the 1980s How hard is the effort, you might wonder? This picture tells the tale. Places 1,2,and 4 laid out while Ben True, 3rd, staggers to remain upright as Joanie remembers the feeling well Last year’s runner up Gemma Steel of England one-steps New England’s own Shalane Flanagan for the women’s title. Both are timed in 31:27. The coast of Maine greets the 6000+ finishers at Fort Williams Park at one of road running’s most iconic finishes.