The women’s club runners created some of the top highlights of last year’s Take The Bridge summer series. Ladies from Dashing Whippets, November Project, Finish Line PT and Brooklyn Navy (okay now Brooklyn Track Club) toed the line and made for thrilling races, time and again. And after throwing elbows on the course, they joined us in tossing back beers at the afterparty. It was a great summer.
So we are incredibly excited at the huge club turnout for TTB Boston, led by Heartbreakers and November Project. Our top newcomers include D1 runners from Providence and Villanova, running with the backing that a strong college running experience can provide. And many are new to TTB. There’s nothing more exciting in our small race than watching track or road speedsters tackle an unfamiliar environment.
So let’s meet some of our top new contenders. We cannot wait to see them race Saturday, both against the course, each other. We’re also stoked to see a few familiar faces from TTB past (shout out to Lena Placzek of Brooklyn Track Club, a D1 runner in her own right):
CREW/CLUB: The Heartbreakers
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: As many a track coach says, you can’t teach speed. Well Caitlin’s got it. She owns a USATF New England 800 meter title, clocking in at 2:09, and just set a mile PR of 4:48. And Caitlin admits that she is “flirting” with long distances.” She scored for the Heartbreakers at Cross Country Nationals, and has a 17:30 5k PR.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Caitlin was a sprinter in high school, ran the 400 for the mighty Providence track and field program, and moved up to the 800 her senior year. She was hooked, and the 800 is now her go-to distance. But we’re pretty sure that flirtation with long distance is going to lead to some big things.
WHAT DREW HER TO SIGN UP: Caitlin is part of the Heartbreaker contingent that is repping big time at TTB Boston. Among them, her boyfriend/coach/teammate Conor (check out our men’s preview).
MILE PR: 4:48
5K PR: 17:30
WHEN SHE’S NOT RUNNING: Caitlin works at New Balance as a Run Speciality Associate Account Specialist. When not running, she likes to read and watch Netflix (her current favorites are One Tree Hill and Hot to Get Away with Murder. Go figure).
**Photo credit: Josh Campbell Photo
CREW/CLUB: The Heartbreakers
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: Claudia is setting PRs left and right as a post-collegiate athlete. We love her range, and her guts. She’s run a bunch of half marathons, and just set a 5K PR of 18:17 in some nasty conditions at Craicfest.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Claudia began running in high school (man do we love high school track at TTB). She says it took her a while to find her groove. But in this case finding her groove meant walking onto the storied Villanova track and field team as a distance runner. We’re impressed.
WHAT DREW HER TO SIGN UP: She heard the hype and had to check it out, she says. First TTB, first unsanctioned race. We think Claudia’s going to kill it Saturday.
MILE PR: 5:17
5K PR: 18:17.
WHEN SHE’S NOT RUNNING: As a new urban dweller (she moved to Boston from the suburbs), Claudia spends her free time exploring the city.
WHY WE ARE WATCHING HER: A New Yorker putting it on the line in Beantown. Kinda like Mookie Wilson.
RUNNING BACKGROUND: Leigh’s been a fixture in the NYC running community for a few years. She’s won the Orchard Street Runners Midnight Half, and has come to (cheer) her share of Take The Bridge races. Had a couple of setbacks with winter training (Cry me a frozen river, say Bostonians) but feeling back on track and “loving running again.”
WHAT DREW HER TO SIGN UP: First one and admits to being pretty nervous because she says she’s more of a long distance specialist.
MILE PR: 5:14
5K PR: 16:48. A long time ago, and “in a half marathon”? There’s gotta be a story there.
WHEN SHE’S NOT RUNNING: Leigh does pilates, checks out new restaurants and pretty much tries to enjoy life.
written by Adam Barcan + Jennie Cohen