We took the brave move of predicting the Take The Bridge Queensboro women’s race as “hard to call”. You know, that’s like saying “somebody” will be named our president as of November 9. So this time? Maybe harder to call. Three of our top four ladies from last race return, and man were they close last time. Just 6 seconds separated second-place Elizabeth Laseter, third-place Victoria Kornieva-Robitaille and fourth-place Leigh Anne Sharek. And don’t forget Take The Bridge Brooklyn is half the distance, at just 1.2 miles. You can bet this race will be fast from the gun and tight at the finish.
You know Elizabeth’s and Leigh Anne’s stories from past profiles. Get to know Victoria, TTB newcomer Emmi Aguillard, and TTB veteran Erin Higgins.
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: Victoria can flat-out run, in the TTB sweet spot of 1 mile to 5K. She knows the TTB drill, having run very tough on the Queensboro. We love her mile speed. She flew in under the radar (our fault) to last race, but now she enters as one of the favorites.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Ran competitively as a high-schooler in Ukraine, then won a scholarship there to run collegiate track and cross-country. Took a break, and eased back into running ‘just for fun’ after moving to the States. Victoria says she is now in ‘the best shape ever’ thanks to two years of training under Long Island’s Bellmore Striders. Victoria is proud of her many strong mile races this year, given she’d ‘much rather run a half marathon than a mile on any given day’. Victoria has been killing it in 2016. That includes a win at the tough and hilly Kings Park 15k, and PRs at 5K (17.36) and the road mile (5:01). #anditsonlyoctober
TTB EXPERIENCE: Victoria ran strong from the gun in her inaugural TTB, en route to third place. She admits the race was harder than she expected, calling the downhill on the way back was ‘just brutal’. And there was ice cold beer as a motivator, she points out!
CREW/CLUB: Bellmore Striders
MILE PR: 5:01 (road) / 5:07 (track)
5K PR: 17:36
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: Every TTB race has a fast debut performance, and we pick Emmi to impress for the women. She has mile fitness, and the motivation to boost Dashing Whippets in the team standings. TTB women, meet your X-factor.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Emmi ran D1 track and cross-country for Tulane University (although she admits to enjoying New Orleans a little too much. How could you not?). She has run for the Whippets since moving to New York to study physical therapy. Emmi ran 5:27 to win the Open Division of Brooklyn Mile in August, and a recent 18:53 at Bronx 5K. She ran her first marathon at New York last year. Next stop, Boston 2017!
TTB EXPERIENCE: Making a debut! Emmi did make it to the best part of TTB Queensboro - the afterparty. She says she loves the ‘cool, local feel’ of the race series, but always had schedule conflicts in the way of signing up. We’re glad she’s free for this one!
CREW/CLUB: Dashing Whippets and Finish Line PT
MILE PR: 4:46 1500
5K PR: 18:23 X-C
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: Erin is a gutsy staple of our series who is at home racing at night. She has plenty of talent and experience. Expect her to run hard.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Erin ran four years of high school track and cross-country. Following a long layoff due to injury, she picked up training with a track club in NJ a few years ago and has slowly gotten back to racing. She admits to fighting a recent injury, and we respect her for still coming to race. Big goal right now? Stay healthy to rock it at Boston 2017.
TTB EXPERIENCE: 5th place in her TTB debut, TTB Manhattan 2016, behind teammate Leigh Anne. Took 10th in the hyper-competitive TTB Queensboro last month. Erin calls her TTB experience ‘amazing’ (thanks Leigh Anne for convincing her to sign up!). And she says the rush of racing at night is one her favorite things about Take The Bridge. Well, this one starts two hours later than usual!
CREW/CLUB: Brooklyn Navy Track Crew
MILE PR: 5:09
5K PR: 18:38