Today at Masterson Station Park in Lexington Kentucky, Kentucky Track & Cross Country Coaches Association played host to the 2011 edition of the Meet of Champions. This meet featured many of the greater-Lexington area’s best runners throughout many races. For today the races were divided by gender and grade for high schoolers and by gender or open for 6th and under, 4th and under, and middle school. This was the state championship for all younger then high school with the middle schoolers running 4k, 6th & under running 3k, and the 4th & under running 2k.
First up was the boys’ high school senior race, starting with a temperature of 28 degrees and a heat index of 23! This race not only was run in the cold but it was also run on a 2.95 Mile course( same with all the “5ks”). Moving up from third at the mile mark to eventually win the race was Cody Parks of East Jessamine in a time of 15:43. Parks entered the stadium only 15 feet in the lead but would go on to outkick and power through to take home the victory. Second was Ben Turner of Conner in 15:53 with Austin Adams of Somerset in third at 15:59.
Next for the high school races was the girls’ senior high school championship. This race was all Kaitlin Snapp who started out only 50 meters in the lead at the mile mark, which opened to a 150 meter lead at the two mile mark, and eventually resulted in a victory margin of over 300 meters, in a fantastic time of 18:27. In second was Kristen Just, in a time of 20:03 followed by Katie Coldiron in 20:07.
The next race was the boys’ high school junior championship. This race was won by Alex Beckerson (Burgin) in a time of 16:14. Beckerson came through the mile mark twenty meters off the lead but by the end won by fifty or so meters. In second was Connor Bartels (Newport Central) who held the lead early coming through the mile in first and finished in a time of 16:31. In third with a time of 16:58 was Rob Schrader of Henry Clay.
Last for the recaps was the girls’ high school junior race which was won by Alex Bunch who powered to a victory of about 50 meters. Alex came through the mile at 6:05 next to Aliah Fueller of Muhlenberg County who eventually finished in second. Completing the top three finishers was Lindsey Mathis also of Muhlenberg County who came through the mile at 6:11.
Sorry for the lack of results, splits, and such; but this meet was very hectic and confusing due to the difference in timing system. This aforementioned difference created some havoc with not being able to get printed results of both names & places for different races for all of these races, which is why they were not used for this article. Though this new timing system may be hard for a spectator or reporter, the new system is excellent for the runners. One thing overlooked and not understood by many is the precision these chips provide; as having bib chips actually gives you the time when the torso crosses the finish line and not the foot which is the official way to measure when someone finishes. Despite the few hick-ups that may have arose throughout the day, overall this was an excellent meet to watch or run in. Going from low twenties for the high school senior races all the way to mid fifties for the 4th& under races, creating perfect running weather for the state championship race.
Also, for those who stuck around for the state championship portion of the races, mainly the 4th and under open race, you got to see one of the most determined and brave runners that ran today. Pictured is this very athlete, Grayson Hume, who ran the full 2000 meters with a prosthetic leg and finished still running! He is a great reminder of how hard these athletes try and how much sports can mean to people, also he is a reminder of how no goal is too high if you put your mind and body to work and follow your dreams. This meet, as in many years past, provides a great tune-up heading into the post season as well as a great championship race for the younger runners.