Oct. 10, 2010
CHICAGO - Former Husky standout Mike Sayenko turned in another outstanding performance at one of the world's top marathons today, as he placed 10th overall at the Chicago Marathon, and was the second finishing American runner.
Sayenko, a 2007 grad who ranks fifth on UW's top-10 list at 10,000-meters, set a new marathon career-best today in two hours, 14-minutes and 27-seconds. Defending champion and reigning Olympic champion Sammy Wanjiru of Kenya won in a time of 2:06.24. Sayenko was close behind the top American finisher, Jason Hartmann, who was eighth in 2:11.06.
Sayenko made up a lot of ground over the second half of the race. At the halfway point, he was 26th overall amidst the field of nearly 40,000 competitors, but at the 25-kilometer mark he had moved up to 21st, and at the 30k mark he was up to 14th. His time of 2:14 was two minutes faster than he ran at the 2009 New York Marathon, where he finished 14th overall as the eighth-best American.
On his personal blog (runsayenko.blogspot.com), Sayenko discusses his preparation for Chicago:
"I have been training for this week for the past 32 weeks without a single day off and averaging 100 (miles per week). I can't wait to toe the line with the worlds best this Sunday at 7:30am. I can truly say I have prepared for this marathon better than any other one I have done... making this my sixth marathon. Doing everything solo has prepared me mentally for the 26.2 mile ride. Doing long marathon simulators, such as 28.6 mile long run in 5:55 mile pace (longest run I have EVER done!), 20 miles at 5:16 mile pace working down from moderate running to marathon pace and 15 mile simulator two weeks ago at 5:04 mile average has given me the confidence at the distance. I hope to celebrate the years work on Sunday October 10th, with the fastest 26.2 mile run I have ever completed!"