Thursday, March 6, 2008

USATF 15k Champs: A Tasty Treat

With all the confusion and misdirection that goes on in the running world this time of year (some people training, some starting to race, some still wrapping up their indoor season) it's great when a race like this weekend's 15k comes up. It's not even in the forefront of U.S. road racing as the huge 8k championships in NYC has cast a considerable shadow for being more than a week away.

Nevertheless, this weekend's race will be very interesting. If next weekend is all about Webb v. Ritz (v. Abdirahman v. Torres v. a loaded field), this weekend will be all about Abdi v. Sell (v. a crew cut).

Abdi is resurfacing for the first time after dropping out of the marathon trials where he was considered a favorite and Sell will be facing his first real competition of his winter road racing season. I think Abdi might have some proving to do. Sell has been up there on his high horse ever since that fateful day in November and LTOB has heard from reliable sources that Abdi is out for blood,
blue collar blood. I'm pumped.

All the talk last year was about Meb and Ryan Hall trying to break the incomparable
Todd William's course/American record of 42:22. That never got close to happening, and even if it did, I'm sure Todd would have been 200 meters from the finish ready to put them both in a Jiu-Jitsu submission hold.

Who's running and what makes them interesting after the jump.

Abdi Abdirahman
The Black Cactus is angry about 2 things: 1. The patented "Brian Sell Smug" and 2. Shaq is trying to bogart his nickname. He plans to take out his aggression on the mean streets of Jacksonville.

Brian Sell
Here's what I think will happen. Sell and Abdi trade leads the whole way. Sell kicks down Abdi with 400 to go, truns around, and gives him the "double gun shoot, spin and holster," you know what I'm talking about. Wow, this guy has a real attitude problem.

Jason Lehmkuhle
Lemkuhle-hand Luke and James Carney are the faces of a rapidly growing "second-tier" group of runners that are running fast and winning races in America and one of them is bound to break through soon. I would take one of these guys over a Brown, Culpepper, and maybe even a Meb right now at any road distance. Call me crazy, but a shift is definitely in motion.

Fernando Cabada
King Cobra could come out of nowhere. He did break the American 25k record and I could picture him talking shit to other runners, which means I really like this guy and want him to make some World Champs and Olympic teams in the future.

Fasil Bizuneh
He always finishes close, right?

Daniel Browne
'ol crew cut really needs a performance that proves he is still in the upper echelon of American distance running.

Andrew Carlson
Josh Eberly
Matthew Gabrielson
Brett Gotcher
Jason Hartmann
Luke Humphrey
Mbarak Hussein
I suppose these guys might finish as well.

***If you're looking for predictions, tune in tomorrow when we literally tell you how the race will literally go down.

1 comment:

Jeremy said...

I will provide my portion of the fearless predictions from a roller coaster that is literally going straight to hell.