Cali Women Shine at San Jose Jose Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon
Pacific Association/USATF women captured the top five places at the San Jose Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon on Sunday, October 3rd, but one women, in particular, inspired all others.
Linda Somers Smith (Arroyo Grande, CA), age 49, a 1996 Olympian in the marathon, secured second place and finished only 1 minute, 36 seconds behind female winner Blake Russell (Marina, CA), who was a 2008 Olympian in the marathon. According to Andy Carr, USATF Road Records Keeper, Somers Smith's phenomenal 1:13:32 at age 49 tops Colleen De Reuck's pending U.S. women's age 45-49 half marathon record of 1:16:30 set earlier this year at the Houston Half Marathon. Somers Smith also set a pending W45-49 20K record in route to the half marathon with a 1:09:42, shattering the current ratified 20K record of 1:14:13. In addition, she bettered the unofficial U.S. W49 single age record of 1:27 for the half marathon distance.
Russell (1:11:55), Somers Smith, and third place female Rachel Booth (Mountain View, CA, 1:14:46) all bettered USATF's women's half marathon standard of 1:15:00 for entry into the 2012 Olympic Marathon Trials. Somers Smith is a seven-time qualifier for the Trials. having previously qualified for the 2012 Trials at the 2010 Honda LA Marathon with a 2:36:33 "A"-standard performance.
Annie Bersagel, 27, of Stanford, CA finished fourth in 1:16:29. Lauren Johnson, 31, of Palo Alto, CA was fifth in 1:16:43.
Full results for the race will be available at: