all photos courtesy Bryan Hoybook
Left to Right: Rory Linkletter, Nick Hauger, Stephanie Bruce, and Ben Bruce lace up their HOKA ONE ONE Rocket X racing flats as race time nears.
For Nick, the race would be his debut at the half marathon distance.
It sure was nice to be on a road race start line again.
Ben Bruce had been tasked with pacing the lead women at 5:15-5:20 per mile (sub 1:10:00 half marathon pace).
Rory took the race out FAST with back-to-back opening miles of 4:34. Only 60:00 half marathoner Callum Hawkins stayed with him.
Nick’s instructions were for a much more conservative approach and he found a nice pack of men to run with for much of the race.
Coach Ben (center) watched the race with his former coach Kevin Hanson (right) and John Hricay of Hawi Management (left).
Approaching the 9-mile mark, four women remained in contention; Steph, 2015 Boston Marathon Champion Caroline Rotich, and Americans Lindsay Flanagan and Carrie Verdon.
By 11 miles, Rory had broken away.
Steph was free and clear as well, and still on sub 1:10:00 pace.
After a difficult couple of months for Rory, this one meant a lot.
Pure joy for Steph with her biggest fan and supporter–husband Ben–right behind her. Her 1:09:55 was a huge personal best.
Nick sprinted home in fifth place, a successful debut and a sign of things to come at this distance.
The Soy Boys.
Wins feel good.
The media loves Steph!
Walking away after a job well done.
Thanks for the pics Bryan!!
Runners: We highly recommend the Valley O.NE Marathon/Half Marathon. Check it out as you plan your schedule next year: valleyonemarathon.com
‘Til next time Nebraska…