Disclaimer! This is for my amusement only, anything below (especially projections of winning times and subsequent points based on those projections) other than places that are pre-determined are subject to a number of variables. Use of this information is at your own risk.
The 20k road championships (Seasons 20k) which will be held Acton MA this weekend will serve as the final event in the 2015 USATF All-Terrain Series. A good deal of the prize money is still up for grabs. The top five overall along with the top finisher in the 40+, 50+, and 60+ age groups are eligible for cash. With the best 5 out of 7 events scoring there are a myriad of possible outcomes. Below I’ve attempted to give some idea of who is most likely to take home cash and what they need to do so.
The women’s age group winners have already been determined with Diane Levesque (acidotic Racing), Jennifer Rapaport (Somerville Road Runners), and Freddi Pare (Team Gloucester) capturing the 60+, 50+, and 40+ respectively.
On the men’s side Richard Paulsen (NE65+) has won the 60+ age group and Dan Verrington (Central Mass Striders) has captured the 50+. In the 40+ Ethan Nedeau (acidotic Racing) and Todd Callaghan (Central Mass Striders) are in a close battle with 5.59 points separating them. Callaghan is behind and must race in order to overtake Nedeau. If Nedeau doesn’t race then Callaghan would need to score at least 98.87 points to take the title. So he would need to finish within 46 seconds of the masters winner (assuming the masters champ runs 5:25 pace – I used that pace as it was the winning pace for the equally challenging 10 mile road championships). If Nedeau and Callaghan both race the math gets a bit fuzzier. Since each has a different “low score” that could potential be thrown out, it isn’t just how they finish in respect to each other but also whether they have a higher score than their low. Does that make sense? It does to me! Basically if both race Nedeau wins if he beats Callaghan. Nedeau would also win if neither of them scores above their low (93.84 for Nedeau and 93.27 for Callaghan).
On the women’s side Kasie Enman (Green Mountain Athletic Assoc) cannot be overtaken for first place, also Leslie O’Dell (Central Mass Striders) has locked up second place. There are six women who could finish in the next three money spots. Freddi Pare (Team Gloucester), Amanda Wright (Sisu), Jennifer Brooks (Central Mass Striders), Kristin Tetrault (Western Mass Distance Project), Jennifer Rapaport (Somerville Road Runners) and Emma Kosciak (Endurance Underground) all have a change to take third through fifth. Since most have done less than the maximum five races, it truly is anyone’s guess how this will sort out. It really comes down to who decides to lace up the racing flats on Sunday. Wright, Brooks and Rappaport are most likely to take those spots if they run the 20k.
On the men’s side there are six guys battling for the top five spots. Scott Leslie (Central Mass Striders), Chris Mahoney (Central Mass Striders), Ethan Nedeau (acidotic Racing), Alex Hall (Whirlaway Racing Team), Todd Callaghan (Central Mass Striders), and Ryan Carrara (New Balance Boston), all have a shot at placing in the top five.
Notes on each below (I based time projections on the winning time being 1:02:37, which is a 5:03 pace, the equivalent of the winning time at the 10 mile road championships):
Scott Leslie: Currently leading the series with 475.12 points. He can improve on his point total by scoring more than 88.82 points. As such, if he runs faster than 1:10:30 he will add to his “best 5” point total. His time at the 10 mile champs would have earned him 92.87 points, so it is likely that he will add to his point total at the 20k.
Chris Mahoney: Currently in second place with 469.43 points. He would improve his point total by scoring more than 90.25 points. He would need to run 1:09:23 to improve his “best five”.
Ethan Nedeau: Currently in third place with 462.27 points. He would improve on his total by scoring more than 84.9 points. That equates to approximately 1:13:45. Assuming Leslie and Mahoney DON’T improve on their totals he could theoretically move into first with a 1:04:03 (97.75 points), a tall order indeed!
Alex hall: Currently in fourth place with 461.69 points. He would increase his total by scoring more than 87.25 points. He can better his current total by running faster than 1:11:45. He can’t get enough points to move into the top position but he could move up as high as second place. If no one improves on their totals he would need to run 1:05:54 to score 95.00 points to move into second. As a point of reference, his time at the 10 mile road champs would have earned 88.35 points.
Todd Callaghan: Currently in fifth place with 453.60 points. He can add to his total by scoring more than 84.39 points. To improve on his total he would need to run faster than 1:14:15. He can’t finish in the top two spots but could place anywhere from third to sixth (he is the most likely to drop out of the top five if Cararra runs). If no one else improves their score he could move into third by running 1:07:15. His time at the 10 mile championships would have earned 86.96 points.
Ryan Cararra: Currently not in the top 10, but only has four finishes. He currently has 380.79 points. Whatever he runs will add to his point total. If no one else improves on their standings he would need to score 94.34 points to move into first. That would be a 1:06:23 using my assumptions above. He could finish in the top five with a finish as “slow” as 1:26:00 depending on who races and whether they improve on their current totals. That is quite a range!
My prediction of the top five after the 20k (I have no idea who is running the 20k and what shape they are in!)