50 Tickets to Brooklyn: #13

50 Tickets

Regional Previews

Top Tens

  • Many on these lists achieved state-level success last fall, usually an All-State bid or top placing at Regionals, but not Clara
  • Her season was on that path, full of mid-18’s, on the road to continuing the legacy she established as a freshman, but was unfortunately cut short due to injury
  • That freshman year was among the best you’ll see: sub-18, Top-10 in Division 1 XC, 10:32 on the track, Regional XC victory
  • The journey back has been gradual, but we’ve been able to see signs that she’s returning to her previous great form
    • Sub-11:00 in the 3200m came at three points throughout the season, showing those efforts were no fluke
    • By mid-May, she had run 5:02 in the 1600m, my guess is if she ran that fresh in June, she would have been sub-5
  • And how could I forget? The TRIATHLONS
    • You’ll have to excuse me, I’m well-versed in finding running results, triathlon not so much
    • I don’t know much, but a 19:54 after swimming and cycling seems pretty dang good
  • Anyhow, it’s been a journey back, sometimes the slower the better, the more appreciative we’ll be when Clara is back on stage in Brooklyn come fall

10Clara James-Heer18:59.7146.4Ottawa HillsRiverside Park17-Sep
10Clara James-Heer18:32.8143.1OK White 2Riverside Park22-Sep
10Clara James-Heer18:37.2148.9Cougar FalconGainey Fields25-Sep
10Clara James-Heer18:31.9148.4BluejayShepherd HS2-Oct
10Clara James-Heer19:21.2136.9PortagePortage West MS9-Oct

9Clara James-Heer152.4OK White (GF)Gainey Fields16-Sep
9Clara James-Heer154.6Ottawa HillsRiverside Park18-Sep
9Clara James-Heer154.3OK White 2Lowell HS23-Sep
9Clara James-Heer158.8Cougar FalconGainey Fields26-Sep
9Clara James-Heer159.3Allendale FalconAllendale HS3-Oct
9Clara James-Heer154.9BengalsRiverside Park9-Oct
9Clara James-Heer149.4OK White ChampionshipByron Center West MS14-Oct
9Clara James-Heer149.0PR 2Cedar Springs ES24-Oct
9Clara James-Heer152.2D1 Reg 1Buckley HS31-Oct
9Clara James-Heer157.7D1 StateMIS6-Nov

  • The one major exception
  • Everyone knows (or should know) that these rankings are all numbers
    • XC ratings, projected improvements based on past runners, track times converted to future XC ratings – these lists are all formulas
  • But Thomas throws a wrench into all those – where do you put a kid that couldn’t break 17:00 in the fall, but runs 4:12 as a sophomore (which would be a state record if not for Seth Norder and Brendan Herger)?
  • I believe this is the best spot and I’m confident those below and above would agree
  • If you followed Thomas’s meteoric rise, you know his past and story, his first block of consistent training was this winter and spring, the times just kept rolling
    • First it was a 4:39 indoors in January, then sub-10 in early February, then 4:24, all following a linear progression that kept going until he reached 4:12/9:19
  • What I found astounding was looking at Thomas’s times as a freshman, a true show of how far he’s come, only breaking 20:00 once
  • The atmosphere in Anchor Bay is tremendous, no doubt spurred by Tom’s jaw-dropping performances
    • But from afar, I can tell it’s drawn more from the camaraderie as a team – and in a few weeks we’ll see how much Tom and the Tars can throw a wrench into the Macomb County traditional standings

10Thomas Westphal17:58.4164.5Anchor Bay EBAnchor Bay HS2-Sep
10Thomas Westphal17:26.7173.8Muskrat ClassicAlgonac HS11-Sep
10Thomas Westphal18:22.0164.0MAC White 1Port Huron Central MS14-Sep
10Thomas Westphal18:08.7165.1SpartanForest Akers17-Sep
10Thomas Westphal18:05.5169.8Cleverley Friday NightAnchor Bay HS24-Sep
10Thomas Westphal17:50.0165.7MAC White 2Warren Mott HS28-Sep
10Thomas Westphal17:29.9170.7MAC DivisionMetro Beach5-Oct
10Thomas Westphal17:45.5172.2Macomb CountyFreedom Hill16-Oct
10Thomas Westphal18:47.3172.69 Anchor BayAnchor Bay HS29-Oct

9Thomas Westphal112.7MAC WhitePort Huron MS15-Sep
9Thomas Westphal98.5Macomb CountyFreedom Hill9-Oct
9Thomas Westphal114.0MAC White DivisionMetro Beach15-Oct

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