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Weekend at the Races: Avenue of the Vines, Dirty Secret, and Bay to Breakers

May 15, 2011 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races, Trails

If one were thinking of running a half marathon and wondering where one might find a race to place well (AKA “cherry picking”), one might think that a trip to the little valley town of Lodi might do the trick.

You could imagine the pleasant farming folk setting down their hoes, or parking their combine harvesters for the morning, lacing up some jogging shoes and trotting out an easy 13.1 miles. Then they might gather around a jug of fresh squeezed lemonade to chat about the new livestock auctioneer they’d seen at the county fair last summer. Or something like that.

Then you might actually run Lodi’s Avenue of the Vines Half-Marathon, or just look at the results, and notice that local running impresario Rich Hanna ran a 1:13:29 and still finished over four minutes behind winner Jose Morales, of Turlock, who ran 1:09:17!

To put that in perspective, imagine that you were running a 5:37/mile pace. Even if you were running that pace, the winner (i.e., Jose Morales) would be done and sipping on some of that fresh-squeezed lemonade and you would still have over a half-mile to run.

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