I’m not much of a gambler preferring the sure thing when I can figure it.
In 2008 I was the USA Team Leader for the World Championships Half Marathon in Rio De Janeiro. That same weekend was the inaugural Market to Market Relay. In a free and curious moment I checked on the results half a world away. Immediately pissed to see that several of my Team Nebraska runners had been poached for another team. Last year’s edition also found one of my top NRGE athletes “persuaded” to represent LRC Racing. Every year in between a shit sandwich.
When I did enter teams it was In It To Win It. And we did.
Until another chapter that will forever color my opinion of the event.
No, not in 2009 when I had to release the top ultra runner in Nebraska history of their kit for being, again, “persuaded” to run under different kit, See a pattern here? So many persuasions!!!
In 2012 LRC Racing was just getting their wings. As it should have been, as I’d hoped, they entered a top tier team with the intention of putting the brash Red & White in their proper place (East of the Platte). Tired of my trumpeting and “voiceterousness”, bored of my team being so far ahead of the field, the decision was made to unseat.
If it was close early LRC Racing began to separate. Stretching their lead to nearly two minutes at the final official exchange area. My boy Matt Pohren never gives in though. He steadily ate away at the lead and caught the LRC runner at the base of the pedestrian bridge. What happened next changed me. Put me on a hot seat. Made me the most unpopular athlete/administrator in Nebraska.
The LRC runner passed his baton to a fresh athlete as soon as he was caught. Who in turn caught and passed Matt, My whole team up in arms and as upset as myself. After meeting with the fellas, getting their description of what happened, we protested immediately.
Very diplomatic. The Rule Book was brought out and studied. Final determination. “There’s nothing in the rule book saying it was not allowed.” LRC Racing claiming the title 7:25.22 to 7:25.23.
Now five years later, I ask you readers to consider those circumstances. How would you have reacted? Would you have let it pass? Would you have considered it fair? Would you have stood up for your mates? I did. And I lost. I still feel my fellas were cheated out of victory that morning. That opinion won’t go over well but look at the facts folks. Being unbeholding,
unencumbered & unsponsored allows me to speak freely. But it is up to you to weigh in with your own pondering of what is right and just. How would you have felt if that baton pass had happened to your team?
This year NRGE, Inc has a coed team entered and anxious. But. Jackie was injured at M2M Ohio. Nick with a sore hip flexor. Ashley two swollen knees. Nicole much more important fish to fry (Race For The Cure, Des Moines Half). Made one of the hardest and easiest decisions I’ve had to. Told the mates at yesterday’s team run that I was pulling them from the event. That I felt strongly enough to waive goodbye to the $600 entry fee.
Y’all enjoy the morning, hope it turns out your way. I just won’t roll it on aggravating injury or incurring same.