Coeur d' Alene Marathon
May 27, 2007
Race Report by Bob Dolphin
There were several changes at the 30th annual Coeur d' Alene Marathon that was held on Sunday, May 27, 2007. When Lenore and I arrived in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho, on the afternoon before the race, we learned that their headquarters on the North Idaho College campus had been moved from the Student Union Building to the nearby Christianson Gymnasium. This was a good move. There is more indoor space for the 1,700 participants in the marathon, half marathon and 5K Fun Run/Walk in case of inclement weather for the post recovery period and award ceremony. In addition, showers were available for the athletes in the gymnasium.
A main change was the elimination of the part of the marathon course that was in the area north of Coeur d' Alene in suburbs and rural areas. The portion of the course that followed the shore of Lake Coeur d' Alene on the North Idaho Centennial Trail was retained in a double out-and-back configuration that was exceptionally scenic and challenging.
The course was shared by 300+ marathoners and 700+ half marathoners with starting times of 7:00 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. at the timing mat in front of the gymnasium. I also liked coming to the finish line by the most direct route possible in the last 5K with a nice downhill run in the last mile.
The course changes gave us attractive surroundings of the college, City Park, the suburbs, the lake views and those of wooded slopes adjacent to the lake trail. By running on the Centennial Trail and bypassing business districts, busy streets and intersections, it was a safer run for the participants. I enjoyed the course, and most of it was familiar to me from past years.
Before the race started there were a lot of friends and acquaintances to see, and many were wearing Marathon Maniac outfits. It was a cool day with a temperature of 50 degrees at the start and 65 degrees later in the day. The sky was overcast, and the winds were variable. Near the lake, headwinds were in the 15-20 mph range while it was calm in the suburbs.
After the marathon started, I drifted back in the pack assuming that my lack of adaptation to the elevation was a factor. Up ahead I could see my friend Ralph Riddick, 75, of Spokane pull away. I figured that it was his day to be first in the 75-79 division. In the third mile I could see him in the distance and thought that I might be gaining on him. I picked up my pace and caught up with him temporarily at a long hill in the fifth mile.
Beyond the turn-around I chose to walk up a hill, and that's where Ralph passed me. He had a good lead on the long downhill that followed in the seventh mile, but I reached the base of the hill before he did. The next time I saw him was near the second half's turn-around. I had a fair lead by then, but I usually have "wall problems" in the final miles that cause me to slow down. While the outcome was in doubt, my run went well, and I finished with a 5:04:27, 238th of 304 finishers, and first 75-79M. Ralph was second, running a commendable 5:28:07 in 258th position.
In the main race, first time marathoner Ken Edwards, 31, of nearby Hayden was the winner. He ran in front for most of the second half to finish in 2:59:06. In second place was Tony Phillippi, 45, of Tacoma, Washington, who ran a 3:07:34 to be the first Men's Masters runner. Tony is one the Marathon Maniacs founders and is the race director of the Tacoma City Marathon that was held for the first time on May 13, 2007. Timothy Frederick, 39, of Washington, DC, ran a 3:10:55 for third place and first 35-39 male.
In the women's race, Kjersten Welch, 36, of Sioux City, Iowa, won a marathon for the third time with a 3:18:14 and was fifth overall. In second place was Paula Molstead, 43, of Charles City, Iowa, who was the first Women's Master runner and ran a 3:22:57. Finishing third was Heidi Bresson, 35, of Spokane, Washington. Her time was 3:27:12.
Friends who won their age divisions were: Sherry Mahoney, 42, Vernon, BC (3:42:35); Unha Lee, 57, Olympia, WA, (4:25:59); Gunhild Swanson, 62, Spokane Valley, WA (3:58:31); Sylvia Quinn, 70, Spokane, WA (4:12:43); Steven Yee, 47, Renton, WA (3:14:53); Jon Mahoney, 55, Vernon, BC (3:42:35), David Jones, 61, Seattle, WA (3:42:21) and Jim Scheer, 65, Vancouver, WA (4:18:28).
Congratulations to Sylvia and Patrick Quinn, 73, of Spokane and Mac Bohlman, 72, of Walla Walla, WA, who have completed all 30 Coeur d' Alene Marathons!!! Mac is scheduled for hip replacement surgery, yet he persevered to run/walk the marathon in 6:37:16. Due to pending orthoscopic knee surgery, Russ Akers, 70+, of Walla Walla wasn't able to compete and had to end his long string.
This was my fifth marathon in five consecutive weekends, and every week I've seen a lot of Marathon Maniacs in their running gear. Many are the same Maniacs whom I saw the week before, yet it was a treat to see so many on this new double out-and-back course. In my opinion, the changes at Coeur d' Alene were beneficial.
Thanks to Lenore's classmates from grade school and high school, Sue and Chris Stuehm, for being our hosts in Spokane for the weekend. Thanks, also, to race director Hugo Lecomte, his committee and the many volunteers who put on this fine marathon every year.
Written by Bob Dolphin
Edited, Typed and Distributed by Lenore Dolphin
Written by Bob Dolphin