Over the last six months, the weather has not been kind to Dallas road races.
Back in December, ice storms led to the cancellation of that city’s marathon, and on Sunday, March 23, at the Dallas Half-Marathon, high winds might have cost Deena Kastor a U.S. masters record over the 13.1-mile distance.
Despite what LetsRun.com reports to have been 15-mph gusts, the 41-year-old won Sunday’s race and set a new course record with a time of 1:11:57. She also broke the U.S. masters records for 10 miles and 20 kilometers, covering those distances in 55:13 and 1:08.18.
Kastor had plenty of reason to smile—particularly since the race proved she’s fully recovered from the ’flu that caused her to pull out of last month’s New Orleans Rock ’n’ Roll Half-Marathon—but had she somehow finished seven seconds faster, the three-time U.S. Olympian and 2004 bronze medalist would have broken the U.S. masters half-marathon record, set by Colleen De Reuck in 2006.
“Once I realized in the first couple miles of the race how windy it was I wasn’t really focused on the records, but rather putting my head down and giving it my best today performance-wise, which is what we expect as runners every time we get out there,” Kastor said afterward, according to the running website Competitor.
“I just forgot about the records and just tried to run tough against the wind,” she added. “When I got to 10 miles and saw I got the record, I got excited and it continued to push me through the last 3.1 miles of the race.”
While Kastor ran virtually uncontested, finishing minutes ahead of runner-up D’Ann Mineo, who crossed the line in 1:18:28, the men’s race was a down-to-the-wire duel between Julius Kiptoo and Colby Lowe.
In the end, Kiptoo bested Lowe by a mere two seconds, finishing in 1:06:02.
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg