Opportunities for fast races in New York will be few and far between in an abbreviated 2019 XC schedule. With that in mind, recent NC State commit Brooke Rauber (Tully) has been eyeing a track series held in New Jersey to put up some fast times while the opportunity still exists. The Garden State Track Club has established a Fall Showcase Series, that will provide unattached races to a select athletes looking to put up strong times this Fall.
Rauber took the win in the inaugural 5000m showcase, running 16:32.62 for the win on the track. Also of Section 3 was CNS duo Kate and Gabby Putman. Kate Putman, a sophomore, took home a 4th place finish in 17:18.41, a strong finish for the rising talent. While not an exact science, Speed Rating conversions put Putman in the low-140's, with Rauber in the Mid-150's. Putman's sister, Gabby, ran 18:54. Rounding out Section 3 was Hannah Ielfield (South Lewis), who took 9th in 17:57.
One name to watch was that of McKinley Fielding, who took 3rd place in 17:14.34. Fielding is a native of Germany, winning the DODEA-Europe Track and Field Championships. She carries a Personal Best of 5:08 for the 1600m, run as a Sophomore. She is currently listed as being enrolled in Carthage HS in Upstate New York, signaling a likely move during the past pandemic year. Carthage is notable due to the large transfer population, in large part thanks to its location relative to Fort Drum, a major military base in the area. It is unknown if Fielding will be racing for the team this given year. Currently, Carthage has moved their Fall Sports to March.
Record Or No?
Rauber's time in the 5000m bettered the previous Section 3 Record of 16:56.7, set by Denise Bushallow (Auburn) at the 1986 Empire State Games. However, the race at GTSC utilized the use of a male pacer for two miles of the race. The contention is that would make the race Co-Ed, which is illegal for record setting purposes. By the book interpretations consider Boys Track and Field & Girls Track and Field as two completely separate sports, akin to Football vs. Soccer, and the merging of the two together makes the race invalid. However, for convenience sake, many schools utilize Co-Ed races for Dual Meets and smaller Invitationals pressed for time.
There is precedent for the Record to be accepted. Molly Huddle's NY #3 Indoor 1500m was achieved during a Co-Ed race back in 2002. Should Rauber's mark be validated, she would rank as NY #4 All-Time in the event.
Further guidance on Record Eligibility is currently being sought.
The track also did not utilize an inside rail, but cones were placed on the turns at the appropriate distance. The cone spacing ruling has been raised in the past, as it was used to invalidate the Northport 4xMile National Setting Relay at the Brooks PR meet in 2014, as well as the finals qualification in the 800m at the 2017 New York State Champs at Union-Endicott. However, it does not apply here, as the cones were placed at their respective correct distance.
Luckily, GTSC is offering five more opportunities to break the record, of which Rauber has intentions to further participate. The record could go down even further.