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Blowing Rock’s Colley, Van Ord set new ZAP Endurance club records in Chicago Marathon

By David Rogers. CHICAGO, Ill. — A perfect day for road racing produced an astonishing world record and four course records for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Oct. 8. Blowing Rock-based ZAP Endurance’s elite professional running team also came away with new club records and two personal best times.

Kenya’s Kelvin Kiptum, just 23 years old, flirted with a new world record in Valencia, Spain, in December 2022 and again at the London Marathon just over four months later. This time, on the streets of Chicago, he became the first person in world history to run the 26.2 mile marathon distance under 2:01, smashing the world marathon record in 2:00:35.

“It was a perfect day for a marathon,” said ZAP Endurance head coach Pete Rea, watching the world record performance at the finish line. “The temperature was in the mid-40s, low humidity, the lightest of winds. It was a thrill for me to witness Kiptum’s performance.”

Rea, of course, had other interests in the race. ZAP team members Andrew Colley, Tristin Van Ord and Annmarie Tuxbury were competing and he anxiously awaited their finishes — and it was worth the wait.

Colley and Van Ord each set new personal records while finishing in the top 15 of their respective divisions. Both also established new ZAP club records.

Colley’s 2:11:22 allowed him to finish No. 15 among the estimated 47,000 runners participating in the event, no longer having to share with teammate Josh Izewski the club record of 2:11:26 he achieved in Rotterdam, in April.

Van Ord finished No. 14 among the women, her 2:25:58 improving on her previous club record of 2:27:07, set in Houston this past January. Tuxbury developed some back troubles during the race, Rea explained, and faded to 2:38:49, well off her personal best of 2:36:59 set in April’s Rotterdam Marathon.

“Andrew set a new personal and club record but I know he is frustrated,” said Rea. “With about 5,000 meters to go, he was running with some guys who ended up finishing two minutes ahead of him. We’ll get that figured out, why he is falling off so much at the end.

“Tristin will take her new personal record, improving by well over a minute, as a positive,” added Rea, “but she had some trouble at the end, too. With about four miles to go she began to slow, but gutted it out to the end.”

Van Ord knows where any trouble began.

“I got a little excited, a little impatient,” she said. “I ran a 5:20 and a 5:22 mile pace for miles 18 and 19, which is about 10 seconds faster per mile than I had been running and it cost me a bit.”

Even so, Van Ord bettered the Olympic standard by almost a full minute. That means if she can finish in the top three in Orlando at the February trials, she gets to go to Paris. In Chicago, there were only five other American women who finished ahead of her.

Sifan Hassan of The Netherlands finished No. 1 among the women, setting a course record of 2:13:44, which is the second fastest women’s time in marathon history. Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich was No. 2 (2:15:37) and Ethiopia’s Megerti Alemu was No. 3 (2:17:09).

Emily Sisson was the top U.S. woman, finishing No. 7 in 2:22:09, with Molly Seidel of the U.S close behind at No. 8 (2:23:07).

Ford, the “Rabbit” 

An unofficial side note from the Chicago Marathon, ZAP Endurance’s middle distance specialist Ryan Ford ran as a hired pace setter.

“The original pace setter hired by the Chicago organizers had gone back to home in Africa and had some trouble with his visa in returning,” said Rea. “So they called me last week to see if we had anyone who might be available to serve as a replacement. As it turned out, Ryan was supposed to run on Oct. 1 in a Twin Cities 10-miler up in Minneapolis-St. Paul, but the race was cancelled two hours before the start because of the heat. So, for Chicago he was hired to run about a 1:04:00 pace for the first half of the race, with bonuses if he reached certain benchmarks. He did great, when he finally pulled off the course at about 18 miles, he was running a 2:08:00 marathon pace, which is pretty remarkable. He said afterwards, ‘I think I am a marathoner now’.”

Rea added that Ford will be trying to qualify for running in February’s U.S. Olympic Trials by competing in the Indianapolis Monumental Half Marathon at the end of October.

VIDEO CLIP

Zap Endurance head coach Pete Rea offers encouragement to team member Andrew Colley among some of the second group of elite runners in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Video clip by Sean Rea.

CLICK HERE to view brief clip.

 

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