asics Greenville Track Club-ELITE - a post-collegiate, Olympic-development program
ASICS Greenville Track Club-ELITE's Annie Rodenfels ran an impressive 15:49.53 to place fifth in a very deep field at the Music City Distance Carnival in Nashville, TN. She ran a whopping 45 seconds faster than her "official" previous personal best of 16:34.8, which was run back in December. Annie had run 16:07.9 on June 13 in a time trial in Greenville.
With the 2020 Outdoor track season basically cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, competitive opportunities have been few and far between. Race Director, Dave Milner did an excellent job of producing this year's meet, which required many additional restrictions and that each athlete produce two negative COVID-19 tests within the week leading up to the competition. The meet was also moved from Vanderbilt University, the usual site, to nearby Libscomb Academy and athlete support staff and spectators were extremely limited as social distancing protocols were in place.
Rodenfels, a 3-time NCAA DIII national champion, ran the race at sub-16:00 pace with kilometer splits of 3:10.98, 3:09.36 and 3:14.05 to pass 3,000m in 9:34.39. She covered the 4th kilometer in 3:13.84 and was in tenth position, but well behind the three leaders, with 1200 meters remaining. Annie then unleashed a furious kick over the final kilometer (3:01.18) to finish 5th, only .14 of a second behind fourth and three seconds behind third. The race was won by Hannah Everson, who represents the United States Air Force World Class Athletic Program with a time of 15:31.97, which was a new meet record.
Rodenfels's teammate, Eddie Garcia, finished 11th in the men's 5,000m with a time of 14:20.37. He ran with the lead pack through the early kilometers and passed 3,000m at 8:20 (sub-14:00 pace). Eddie began to lose contact with the lead pack after 2800m, and slowed considerably over the final two kilometers.
GTC-ELITE was established in 2012. The program produced four qualifiers for the 2016 USA Olympic Trials Marathon in Los Angeles, one qualifier/participant for the 2019 Pam American Games Marathon in. Lima, Peru and three qualifiers/two participants for the 2020 USA Olympic Trials Marathon in Atlanta, GA. The post-collegiate, Olympic development program is sponsored by ASICS, the 48-year-old Greenville Track Club, Joy Real Estate, the Borch Foundation, generous individual contributors and partnerships with Performance Therapy, Carolina Spine and Rehab, Roll Recovery products, FinalSurge (on-line training log), The ATI Running Academy, ElliptiGO, NormaTec Recovery Boots, Cocoa Elite recovery products, Stryd Running, Coach Bob Williams Pace Calculator, the DorsiFlex (stretching device) and the MOBO board. The club is a proud and active member of both the Road Runners Club of America and USATF.