Thursday, July 28, 2011

Three Richmond Spiders Selected to 2011 USA Mountain Running Team

Ryan Lee will begin his sophomore year
at the University of Richmond in a USA uniform,
competing in the 27th World Mountain Running Championships
in Albania.  Here he is shown competing in the 5K
at the 2011 USATF Jr National Championships
in Eugene, OR this past June.
The Three Spider Athletes will Compete in the 27th World Mountain Running Championships in Albania
Mt Dajt overlooking Tirana, Albania.
Athletes representing seven states comprise the 2011 USA Junior Mountain Running Team and three of those athletes will also represent the University of Richmond.   University of Richmond incoming freshmen Clare Moretz (Madison, VA) and Billy Fayette (Clarendon Hills, IL) will join Spider standout sophomore distance runner Ryan Lee (Wilmington, DE) as part of the 2011 USATF Mountain Running Team. The three Spider athletes will travel with team USA to compete in the 2011 IAAF World Mountain Running Championships in Tirana, Albania on September 11th.

These three athletes are the latest in a long line of Spider distance runners to represent the United States at the World Championships, and Clare Moretz is the first University of Richmond female to make the team. The race will include athletes from 36 countries and will be held Sunday, September 11th in the mountains outside of Tirana, the capitol city of Albania.

The mountains outside Tirana, Albania will host
the 2011 World Mountain Running Championships
on September 11.
Lori and I couldn’t be happier for Ryan (Lee), Billy (Fayette) and Clare (Moretz). They are all three coming off great respective track seasons and have worked hard over the past year to elevate their running to the level it takes to be selected to represent the USA at the World Championships of Mountain Running.

Although we have just begun to work with Billy and Clare they have shown excellent progress over the past year for their high school teams and coaches.  Billy ran 9:09.96 for 3200M and 4:10.33 in the 1600M this spring...and Clare is a 4-time VA state class A champion on the track (2X in the1600M, Once in the 800M and once in the 3200M) (See detailed Bio Below). This is the biggest running stage there is...It simply doesn't get any more important than representing the USA at the World Championships. 

Skanderbeg Square-Tirana, Albania
 Both Billy and Clare made clear their reasons for choosing our program and University to extend their academic and athletic experiences. This a great opportunity to kick-off their college career and we look forward to providing the support and guidance they need in order to achieve their goals.

Ryan Lee will be a sophomore this fall. He had a great spring season highlighted by his 14:33 effort in the 5K, 8:25 in the 3K and 3:54 in the 1500M and 12th place finish in the 5K at the USATF National Jr Championships (see detailed Bio Below).  During the past year he listened to our team leaders while trying to emulate their footsteps by making sacrifices required to excel at the highest level of our sport. He has grown as an athlete and recognizes this as a great opportunity for him and the USA Junior team to medal by making the podium (top 3 teams). That is their goal and always the goal of the USA Team.

Tirana Lake in the suburbs of Tirana, Albania
Ryan, like several Spider athletes before him, realizes you must be ready to not only take opportunities but to also make opportunities. Athletes ready and willing to make sacrifices necessary to achieve success at this level and who embrace the work it takes to callous their bodies through the intensity it takes to create success in this sport will have the ultimate victory. As an athlete, if you want to achieve the most you must be ready when the opportunity presents itself. Ryan has talked about this race for nearly a year and I’m happy he, along with Billy and Clare, will have the opportunity to represent USA. Those who know our sport recognize this event takes determination without fear and demands a high tolerance for pain.”

Mt Dajt above Tirana, Albania
The Junior Team joins senior athletes Max King, Joe Gray, Ryan Woods, Matt Byrne, Tommy Manning, Jared Scott, Kasie Enman, Michele Suszek, Brandy Erholtz and Megan Lund, who will also compete in Albania at the World Mountain Running Championships.

“I’m really excited about this year’s junior team” said Paul Kirsch, Team Manager of the Juniors. “The course in Tirana is a fast one and the combination of strength and speed that our juniors have this year gives them a good shot at being on the podium.”

You can follow the team’s pursuits this September by following them online at any of the following sites:

USA Mountain Running Team (USMRT) Website go HERE

Visit USMRT on Facebook HERE

Visit USMRT on Twitter

The official race website for the 2011 World Mountain Running Championships


Host Tropikal Resort Hotel information HERE
Durres History go HERE  
Tirana History go HERE

RACE COURSE:  The World Mountain Running Championships alternate between up only and up/down courses every other year with 2011 being an up/down year. This year the race course is a 4.5K loop with inclines reaching 40% in places with an average incline on the ascent of 12.4% and 11.7% on the descent.  The junior women will race one 4.5km up/down lap while the junior men and senior women will race two 4.5km laps (9K). The senior men’s race is three laps (13.5K).


Billy Fayette (Age 18, Clarendon Hills, IL)-Billy is a recent graduate of Hinsdale Central High School under the guidance of Coach Jim Westphal where he set numerous school records and was winner of the prestigious Jim Carmignani award- best all round male athlete/leader at Hinsdale Central HS in 2011. Billy ran a 14:39 (3 mile) in the IL State Cross Country championships. He has PRs of 9:09.96 in the 3200m (2011 Wanner Knights Outdoor Invitational) and 4:10.33 in the 1600m/4:12.06 for the full Mile distance (Midwest Distance Gala-6-5-11)...While at Hinsdale HS he served as team Captain…set Indoor school Records in the 1600M (4:16-3-26-11) and 3200M (9:16-3/19/11)...was 3 time all-conference honoree( indoor 3200M, 1600M) outdoor (1600M-runner-up)...2 time All- Sectional honoree...Sectional Champion in the 3200M and runner-up in the1600M (5-22-11)...qualified to the state meet in 2 events his senior year(3200M and 1600M)...2011 All State performer in the 3200M during Outdoor Track (5-28-11)...He set Outdoor School Records in the 1600M- 4:10.33 (6-5-11-converted) and Distance Medley Relay-10:18...Selected 2011 team MVP...His non running honors include: member of J. Kyle Braid Leadership organization, Academic High Honors, National Honor Society, Illinois Scholar Athlete, President of Athletes Committed to Excellence, American Legion Award and Dean's List each semester…Billy will be attending the University of Richmond in the fall.

Ryan Lee followed by USA Mountain Running Teammate
and University of Portland standout Chase Caulkins (#7) 
at the 2011 USATF Jr National 5K Championships in Eugene, OR.
Ryan Lee (Age 19, Wilmington, DE)-Ryan Lee is entering his sophomore year at the University of Richmond. Last season Ryan finished 12th in the 5000m race at the USATF Track and Field Championships, where he competed against now-team mate Chase Caulkins. Ryan has PRs of 3:54.44 (1500M), 8:25.83 (3000m), 14:33.61 (5000m), 25:32 (8km XC). He was selected Rookie of the week performer for the Atlantic 10 Conference (A-10) during cross country following freshman course record at Spider Alumni Open where he broke Levi Grandt’s course record by 10 seconds (Levi placed 13th at the World Jr Mountain Running Championships 3 years ago.)… Lee placed fourth in the A-10 Conference Outdoor Championships in the 5K finishing as the top freshman… and his first collegiate win came at the JMU Invitational in the 1,500 M (3:54.44)… He competed at both the USA Junior Cross Country Championships in San Diego, CA (placing 21st) and USA Junior Track & Field Championships in Eugene, OR (placing 12th in the 5,000M) respectively..

Chase Caulkins (Age 19, Ketchum, ID)-Chase was a member of the 2010 team where he finished as the top US Junior. His 5K track personal best is 14:09 and he recently finished 4th place in the 5000 meters at the USATF Junior Track and Field Championships in June. Chase also ran 24:19 for 8 km during the cross country season. He is entering his sophomore year at the University of Portland.

Oliver Bear Don’t Walk (Age 18, Everson, WA)-Oliver currently holds the American Junior 50km record (3:10:07) and has also qualified for the USATF Junior Track and Field Championships in the 10,000 meters in 2010 and 2011. He has a 5K road personal best of 15:06 and finished 5th overall at the 15km USA Trail Champs in 2011. Oliver is attending Stanford University in the fall.


Clare Moretz (Age 18, Madison, VA)-Clare was a senior at Madison High School in 2011 where she had PRs of 5:07.71 in the 1600m and 11:16.18 in the 3200m. She is a 4 time state champion on the track in the 800M (2010), 1600M (2009 and 2010) and 3200M (2011) events along with achieving multiple time All-State honors. After being undefeated for the first half of her 2010 cross country season, Clare suffered a stress fracture that left her unable to compete for the rest of the XC season. Clare turned that around in the spring where she was 1st at the VHSL Group A State Championships in the 3200 and set a school record in the 1600m with her second place finish at the Championships. Clare qualified for the state championships in the 400, 800, 1600, and 3200. She lives in the mountainous area of Virginia near Madison located at the foothills of the Shenandoah National Park.  This area is home to the trails Spider runners Andrew Benford, Levi Grandt and Chris York used to prepare for the WMR Championships when they were selected to the team…Clare will be attending the University of Richmond in the fall.

Krisztina Dearborn (Age 19, Mirror Lake, NH)-Krisztina is entering her sophomore year at Central Connecticut State University, where she this year she had personal bests of 18:39 in the 5000m and 38:44.22 in the 10,000m. Kristina went to high school at Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro where she was 2nd in the 2009 Lakes Region Cross Country championships. According to USA team staff, Krisztina also got to preview what the World’s course will be like when she competed in the 2011 USA Mountain Running Championships at the Cranmore Hill Climb in North Conway, NH.

Lara Shegoski (Age 19, Belle Mead, NJ)-Lara had a strong freshman year at Johns Hopkins University where she had a 17:37 personal best in the 5000m and had her 6000m XC personal best at the NCAA Division III National Championships in November...Lara attended Montgomery High School in New Jersey where she was All American in the 5000m indoor and outdoor. . Team leaders feel her leg speed will serve her well at the relatively fast World’s mountain running course in Albania.


03  rocky hillsides, Tirana, Albania
The mountains outside Tirana where the 2011 World Mountain Running Championships.
This travel blog photo's source is TravelPod page: Tirana

Albania countryside 2, Tirana, Albania
More of the mountains outside Tirana...
 This travel blog photo's source is TravelPod page: Albania

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Spider T&F Alumni, Jeff Strojny (UR '09) selected "Best Local Entrepreneur Under 30" Runner-up

An update on Richmond Spider Track & Field Alumni, Jeff Strojny (UR '09)... As you recall he opened the "New Balance-Richmond" store in the spring of 2010...We received great news today that he has been selected Runner-Up in the "Best Local Entrepreneur Under 30" category by  The annual feature focuses on the "Best & Worst" in the Richmond metro area.

Richmond's longest running "Best & Worst" survey will be featured on WRIC-TV8 on July 29 at 8PM.
Jeff Strojny (2nd from left) is owner of
the New Balance-Richmond  store.

Spider Track & Field Alum, Jeff Strojny was
selected Runner-Up in the
"Best Local Entrepreneur Under 30"
category by
For more information on Jeff Strojny and the New Balance-Richmond store see our blog from May 10, 2010 and the Richmond Time Dispatch article:

BLOG:  Richmond Track Alum Opens "New Balance-Richmond" Store in Short Pump

ARTICLE By Richmond Times Dispatch-- Biz Buzz: New Balance store is UR grad’s latest project--Richmond Times Dispatch

Spider Jenn Ennis Wins 2011 Xterra Fugitive Trail Adventure Race

Recent Spider graduate Jenn Ennis (UR '11) shown winning
the 2011 Xterra Fugitive Trail 10K Adventure Race (44:09) 
on June 11 at Brown's Island in Richmond. 
(Richmond Sports Backers photo) 
Jenn Ennis concluded a successful spring track season competing in the 3,000M Steeplechase at the NCAA Championships (East Region).  In the steeple she ran 10:30.27 in the 3,000m steeplechase to qualify by winning the UNC Invitational in the middle of May.

On June 11, after the spring track season Ennis concluded the year with a win at the 2011 Xterra Fugitive Trail 10K on Brown's Island in Richmond.  In the Xterra Fugitive 10K Adventure Race she ran 44:09 to win the over-all title and easily outdistance 2nd place.  The Xterra Adventure Series is not your ordinary set of races either...Their courses require you to hop across rocks, soar across streams, jump logs and zig-zag your way along single-track trails. The race is not certified and therefore is classified as ~roughly~ 10K in distance.

"The toughest part of the race was the 'Mayan ruins' which were these steps that were basically at a 90 degree angle that you had to use your hands to climb up" said Ennis. "They had a few surprise climbs like that throughout the race. Being  a steepler definitely helped in that race. At one point you had to jump over rocks across the James River equaling about 15 steeplechase water barriers in a row. It helped having run the trail systems so many times though college so i knew a majority of the trails pretty well... It was a really tough course but I'll probably do more adventure races in the future!! They are a lot of fun!"
Official race sponsor
“We can’t thank Mayor Jones, Councilman Conner, the local community and sponsor Luck Stone enough,” said Dave Nicholas, the managing director of XTERRA. “Over the last 13 years thousands of athletes have experienced Richmond in a very unique way and walked away with great stories to tell about their adventures. With Luck Stone’s support we can provide that opportunity to thousands more in the coming years and continue to perpetuate Richmond’s reputation as being a remarkable city with top notch trails."

This was the 13th year for XTERRA in Richmond...The River City is widely regarded as the sport’s finest urban adventure. Events include the XTERRA Fugitive 10K trail run, the XTERRA Richmond half-marathon trail run, free kids races, free clinics taught by pro athletes, the Paul Mitchell Cut-a-thon to raise money for the Challenged Athletes Foundation, and two off-road triathlons – a half-distance XTERRA Sport race and the XTERRA East Championship.

Link to Running Times article HERE

Friday, July 1, 2011

Introducing the NIKE Lunar SPIDER

 If you are a Richmond Spider...
you must check out NIKE's latest racing flat the Lunar SPIDER...
The New NIKE Lunar Spider is on sale in stores now...and you can find it on-line.

Nike LunarSpider LT+ ‘Gyakusou International Running’ Collection – Blue Force/Granite-Velvet Brown

Nike LunarSpider LT+ ‘Gyakusou International Running’ Collection – Blue Force/Granite-Velvet Brown

Nike LunarSpider LT+ ‘Gyakusou International Running’ Collection – Blue Force/Granite-Velvet Brown

Nike LunarSpider LT+ ‘Gyakusou International Running’ Collection – Blue Force/Granite-Velvet Brown

Nike LunarSpider LT+ ‘Gyakusou International Running’ Collection – Blue Force/Granite-Velvet Brown

Nike-Lunar Spider-Racer-TZ-White-Red

 Nike-Lunar Spider-Racer-TZ-Black-Yellow

Nike-Lunar SPIDER-Racer-TZ- CAMO-White Matalic Silver

Nike-Lunar SPIDER-Racer-TZ- CAMO-White Matalic Silver

A Review from "":

Nike Air Zoom Lunar Speed Spider

"To honor the trailblazer and love of running and all things related, Nike created the namesake Bowerman Series as a homage to Bill Bowerman. The Bowerman Series thrives on a simple concept- to create the lightest running shoes with the best fit that can go the distance. With these three criteria in mind, Nike puts its best technology forward into the series such as Natural Motion engineering so shoes are appropriately light– appropriately light meaning light enough for the athlete to run fast, but not so light as to induce injury.

This season, Nike is dropping a fresh and wild colorway of the Air Zoom Speed Spider, a new elite race model from the company. The new kicks incorporate Nike’s latest Flywire technology and are one of the lightest, top of the line racing flats around, checking in at approximately 160g. Other than Flywire, the upper is also kept form-fitting and breathable in mesh and atop a Cushlon LT sole. Cushlon LT is a special foam which provides a firmer road feel which many runners prefer in a support trainer.

For those who are seeking something new and exciting in the often bland performance running shoe sector, these are good choices that will perhaps propel and inspire better performance through both technology and aesthetics in design. The new Air Zoom Speed Spider-R is now available for order."

So, go out and buy this lightweight racing flat...It's a good one and Spider approved.