Janet Cherobon-Bawcom Breaks American Record to Win US 25km Championships

by: USATF Communications
May 12, 2012


GRAND RAPIDS – Janet Cherobon-Bawcom (Rome, Ga.) ran a pending American Record of 1:24:37 in winning the women’s crown Saturday at the 2012 USA 25 km Championships. Joseph Chirlee (Colorado Springs, Colo.) won the men’s title in 1:15:11.

2012 marks the 19th year that the championships were hosted by the Fifth Third River Bank Run in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Overcast skies and cool temperatures provided the stage for the 35th annual event, as the championships field once again faced a strong international contingent.

A 4:51 opening mile saw Chirlee, Brett Gotcher (Flagstaff, Ariz.), Ryan Bak (Bend, Ore.) and Christo Landry (Ann Arbor, Mich.) leading a large pack that included Robert Letting of Kenya and Derege Tadesse of Ethiopia.

After running 5:00 for the second mile, the leaders increased the tempo to 4:40 pace to break up the pack. At five miles, Letting and Chirlee opened a small gap on Gotcher, Landry and Tadesse. By 10 miles, the pair held a lead of more than 30 seconds over the chase pack.

The remaining miles saw Letting and Chirlee running together but Letting made his move as they reached downtown, opening a lead that would take in to the finish line in 1:14:55,  16-seconds ahead of Chirlee, who still had plenty to celebrate with his first ever U.S. title. Landry ran 1:15:48 to finish third overall and as the runner-up in the championships.

The women’s race also saw a strong start with Bawcom and Lindsey Scherf (Fayetteville, N.C.) quickly establishing themselves as the main contenders for the women’s title. After passing the first mile in about 5:20, the pair dueled for much of the race with Scherf setting the pace.

Scherf tried several times to break away but Bawcom always maintained contact and like Letting, made her move in the final miles as she charged to the finish for her fifth USA title and first American record. Scherf finished a strong second in 1:25:13.

Editor's Note: Janet Cherobon-Bawcom may have broken the 25km record but she didn't run the fastest 25km ever by an American. Deena Kastor split 1:22:35 or 1:22:36 for 25km in her 2:19:36 American record marathon in 2006.

*More On Janet from Grand Rapids Newspaper *More on Men's Race which was won overall by Robert Letting

ROBERT LETTING NYACK NY USA M 25-29 27 M 1:14:54 1:14:54 1 $5000
JOSEPH CHIRLEE * COLORADO SPRINGS CO USA M 30-34 32 M 1:15:10 1:15:10 2 $8500
CHRISTOPHER LANDRY   * ANN ARBOR MI USA M 25-29 26 M 1:15:47 1:15:47 3 $4000
BRETT GOTCHER * FLAGSTAFF AZ USA M 25-29 27 M 1:16:14 1:16:14 4 $1500
ZACHARY HINE * LAKEWOOD CO USA M 20-24 24 M 1:16:39 1:16:39 5 $1000
RYAN BAK * BEND OR USA M 30-34 30 M 1:16:57 1:16:57 6 $800
CRAIG LEON * EUGENE OR USA M 25-29 27 M 1:17:23 1:17:23 7 $600
JESSE CHERRY * BLOWING ROCK NC USA M 25-29 25 M 1:18:06 1:18:06 8 $500
JOSHUA EBERLY * GUNNISON CO USA M 30-34 31 M 1:18:09 1:18:09 9 $400
DANIEL TAPIA * CASTROVILLE CA USA M 25-29 25 M 1:18:36 1:18:36 10 $200
JESSE ARMIJO * ALBUQUERQUE NM USA M 25-29 29 M 1:19:17 1:19:17 11 $100
LUKA THOR ELKHORN NE USA M 25-29 25 M 1:19:47 1:19:47 12  
JOSH MOEN EDEN PRAIRIE MN M 30-34 30 M 1:19:55 1:19:55 13  
TYLER MCCANDLESS BOULDER CO USA M 25-29 25 M 1:20:17 1:20:17 14  

*US Prize Money

Women

JANET BAWCOM ROME GA F 30-34 33 F 1:24:36 1:24:36 1 $12000
LINDSEY SCHERF FAYETTEVILLE NC F 25-29 25 F 1:25:12 1:25:12 2 $4500
MELISSA JOHNSON-WHITE LAKE ORION MI USA F 30-34 31 F 1:26:22 1:26:22 3 $2500
DOT MCMAHAN ROCHESTER HILLS MI USA F 35-39 35 F 1:26:29 1:26:29 4 $1000
ALLIE KIEFFER TEMPE AZ USA F 20-24 24 F 1:26:29 1:26:29 5 $800
ALVINA BEGAY FLAGSTAFF AZ USA F 30-34 31 F 1:27:07 1:27:07 6 $600
JEANNETTE FABER PORTLAND OR USA F 30-34 30 F 1:27:16 1:27:16 7 $500
WENDY THOMAS WINDSOR CO USA F 30-34 33 F 1:27:46 1:27:46 8 $400
KRISTEN FRYBURG-ZAITZ BROOMFIELD CO USA F 30-34 31 F 1:28:30 1:28:30 9 $200
EMILY HARRISON FLAGSTAFF AZ USA F 25-29 26 F 1:29:16 1:29:16 10 $100
RACHEL BOOTH MANDEVILLE LA USA F 30-34 31 F 1:30:54 1:30:54 11  
ALEXANDRA BLAKE TUCSON AZ USA F 25-29 29 F 1:31:58 1:31:58 12  


Video highlights

Video highlights of the USA 25 km Championships are available in cooperation with RunnerSpace.com at www.USARunningCircuit.com.

The USA 25 km Championships were the fourth stop on the 2012 USA Running Circuit (USARC) and featured over $30,000 in prize money with the Chirlee and Bawcom earning $7,000 each. The 2012 USARC is a USA Track & Field road series, featuring USA Championships from one mile to the marathon and attracts the best U.S. distance runners. The circuit features nine events for men and ten for women.

The 2012 USARC is a USA Track & Field road series, featuring USA long distance running championships and for the first time will include the USA Cross Country Championships. The USARC attracts the best U.S. distance runners and has ten events for men and nine for women.

The 2012 USARC will feature more than $909,150 in circuit prize money with U.S. athletes competing for the right to represent Team USA in various international competitions.

The first ten U.S. runners earn points at each USARC race (15 for first, 12 for second, 10 for third, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1), with a final $12,500 grand prix purse ($6,000, $4,000, and $2,500) for the top three men and women point scorers overall.

The mission of the USA Running Circuit is to showcase, support, and promote U.S. runners. Since its inception in 1995, the USARC and its races have provided over $6 million dollars to U.S. distance runners.

For more information on the 2012 USA 25 km Championships visit www.usatf.org.

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