NOVA Runners Compete in the 2014 Boston Marathon

By | April 23, 2014

The NOVA team turned out a good showing in the Boston Marathon on Monday, with gutsy performances from all our runners who entered.

Leading the pack was Cory Schwartz, finishing with an outstanding time of 2:59.30.

NOVA stalwart Mark Drosky also had a strong performance, finishing in 3:10:14.

Following behind was the trio of Erin Masterson (3:23:53), Dawn Gillis (3:23:56) and Katie Tomlinson (3:24:23).  Because of the different wave starts, the ladies of NOVA didn’t run together, but were together in spirit as each crossed the finish line.

Jay Wind also had a great day, finishing in 3:28:22 in his 30th Boston race.

Abhaya Menon put forth a great effort in his first Boston, and though he dealt with much adversity along the way, is already plotting his next marathon effort. He plans to make it back to Boston next year for a rematch.

Coach Jerry had the following to say on Monday about the NOVA performances in Boston:

Congratulations to our Boston crew for their excellent efforts today. I’ve heard from most everyone, and while the results were something of a mixed bag, each of our athletes gave it everything they had, and that’s all I can ever ask for or expect. 

The performance of the day came from Erin, who was within shouting distance of her PR despite having severe foot pain before she reached the 10 mile mark. Erin toughed it out and ran a very, very solid 3:23:53. 

Mark also ran a very solid race, finishing in 3:10:14 and proving once again that there’s plenty of fight left in that old dog. 

Dawn and Abhaya ran hard from the gun and took their shots at a major PR. Dawn held on to finish in 3:23:56, and although it was not what she was hoping for, she’s a much better runner now than when she started with NOVA a few months back, and she will attain her big breakthrough the next time out. 

Abhaya struggled mightily after 25k, but despite the ordeal he suffered he’s already talking about his next attempt at the distance, and he’ll be back better than ever. 

The marathon is a cruel event, and even with the perfect training that Dawn and Abhaya had the number of bad things that can happen during the course of the race is virtually limitless, and between the two of them they experienced most of those bad things today. 

But true to the spirit of the marathon they will be back for more, and that kind of dedication and perseverance is an inspiration to us all. Well done!

Results

Cory Schwartz        2:59:30
Mark Drosky           3:10:14
Erin Masterson      3:23:53
Dawn Gillis             3:23:56
Katie Tomlinson    3:24:23
Jay Wind                 3:28:22
Abhaya Menon       3:49:42

From the NOVA team members who ran Boston, a few personal thoughts below.

Mark Drosky
I was privileged to participate in the 118th Boston Marathon.

It was much more than just a marathon.It was a celebration of remembrance,  life and hope. I relished each and every mile and cherished every police officer and volunteer for their efforts.

Here are photos of Mark’s first Boston (1983) and this year. (Nice hair, Mark!) Both photos are with his longtime running buddy Mike Sinkoski (photos – Mark Drosky)

I thought of all the NOVA folks as well. I too struggled the last half or so. Quads were shot after heartbreak. There is always next year.My friend Mike and I had a great experience 31 years later, Ouch!Everything went smooth all weekend long.

 

Jay Wind
I ran 3:28:22 in my 30th Boston Marathon, my 20th in a row, my 157th marathon finish. I’m grateful to everyone in the DC area who has encouraged me to run, and to all the participants and volunteers in Boston who made this year’s event so special and memorable.

Erin Masterson
I completed my first Boston last year, 2013. It was an epic race, a wonderful experience, and a new PR. But with the events that followed that day – living through the experience of the Boston bombing – I had mixed feelings about returning this year.
Though I knew it would be an emotional experience, I was looking forward to coming back, because I wanted to celebrate the spirit of Boston. I wanted to run the race that we all deserved to have; one unblemished  by tragedy.

NOVA President Erin Masterson with twin brother Andy after the race (photo – Erin Masterson)

Going into the race on Monday, I was certainly less nervous this year than last, but perhaps overconfident too. I thought I had Boston conquered. I was wrong. The Boston hills are no joke, and the bleak stretches of long highway can play dangerous mind games. And a warmer than average day can destroy all hopes of a PR.

I learned this year how fickle Boston can be. It is a tricky course and one that should not be taken lightly.
Entering the race, I had high hopes of a new PR. But after the halfway point, as I saw those hopes slipping away, my goal in the end was just to finish with a solid time within striking distance of my goal. Somewhere in mile 17, on the crest of another slow, burning hill, I doubted my capabilities even to do that.
During that time, I did a lot of rationalizing with myself as to what I was out there to prove. I felt like I had built the race up so much in my head, and to others, that there was no way I couldn’t finish. I wanted and needed that medal, that proof of my accomplishment and my continued membership in the community of Boston finishers. Once is not enough.
When I finally crossed the finish line, I felt like I left everything I had out on the course. That’s all I could have ever asked of myself. So to me, Boston was a success.
See you out there in 2015.

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