Friday, April 15, 2022

Kramer Completes Junior Track Season at UIL 13-6A District Meet

The Woodlands College Park junior Chloe Kramer, the daughter of Volte athlete Mayra Caamano, completed her 2022 high school track season on Thursday night with a new personal best at the 3200-meter distance.

Competing in the UIL 13-6A district meet, Kramer posted her best time ever at the distance, finishing in 12:22.91 - a pace of 6:13 per mile.

Her previous best came a year ago at the Atascocita Invitational when she ran the distance in 12:32.60.

Two Saturdays ago, April 2, she competed with teammates Natalie Byrnes, Cambelle Sanders and Lindsey Jahnke in the Distance Medley Relay of their home meet, the College Park Invitational.  

The four finished in fourth place overall in 13:30.05 as they ran legs of 1200, 400, 800 and 1600 meters.

The week before, under the lights in the Victor Lopez Classic at Rice University on Thursday, March 26, Kramer had her top effort of season with a 3000-meter finishing time of 11:19.83 - a pace of 6:04 per mile.

She opened the season on Thursday, March 10 at the Atascocita Invitational with a 12:44.0 effort at the 3200-meter distance.

Kramer is the only high school track and field athlete of Volte parents.

Brayden Park, Maddie Hanyzewski and Brooke Kramer-Caamano are middle school athletes of Volte families, but online reporting of their results this season have been non-existent other than Park as he finished fifth place in the finals of the UIL 13-6A junior high district championship on Monday, March 23 in both the 3200 meters and the triple jump.

He covered the 3200 meters in 11:21 while finishing the triple jump in 34 feet and 4.75 inches.

Friday, April 1, 2022

Park, Rux Go 1-2 at TWRC Sunday Night 5K

We interrupt our regular order of results reporting to put a smile on your face this Saturday morning!

If this picture doesn't incorporate a bit of "foolishness", we're not sure what does!

No teeth were broken at the completion of the race!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Of course, our own Bill Dwyer does a great job - and has been doing so since the summer of 2009, but one of the things that he does is to give kids that come out and participate a medal to congratulate them and to encourage them to continue to run.

Jerritt Park and George Rux were the only two runners that came out the day after The Woodlands Marathon.  (The Sunday Night 5K is always on the first Sunday of every month.)

There was some joking among the Friends of the Running Community while these two gents were on the course that we could have some future fun by betting on the over/under of any two runners in a race.

Gauging how we thought they would run, we set the time difference at 11 minutes.

One chose above; the other below.

If the over/under is actually met, in Vegas, it is a push.  The house - betting establishment - wins as nobody gets their bet paid off.

And that's what exactly happened this Sunday night.

Jerritt came across the finish line in the Barbara Bush Elementary parking lot in 22:29.

And George, unbeknownst what had been discussed, finished right at 32:29.

Eleven minutes difference on the nose.

The next Sunday Night 5K is Sunday, April 3, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.

Thursday, March 31, 2022

Volte Produces One Of Its Best Chevron Houston Marathon Days Ever

My oh my.

What a day it was at this year's Chevron Houston Marathon for Volte athletes and our friends.

Six new personal bests, two of which were debut marathons.

And count them, nine Boston Qualifiers.

That's nine out of 17.

You know what they say, quality over quantity.

And those of our marathoners who didn't BQ - not that it is everyone's goal - ran very well.

We do want to congratulate our Team Mexico visitors that we had a chance to meet the day before at Fleet Feet Sports in Hughes Landing.

They both finished first in their age group -- Rogers Ondati Gesabwa and Argentina Valdepenas Cerna - with fascinating times of 2:14:46 and 2:39:12, respectively.

Wow #1.  Ramon Rosales.  What more can you say about a 2:36:37 on a near perfect day for running?  

Well, honestly, a lot!

He took seven minutes and 42 seconds off of his previous best of 2:44:19 at last October's Boston Marathon.

Darn!  Ramon was outrunning the bikes en route to his 2:36:37!  ;-)
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Then consider this:  his first Chevron Houston Marathon was four years ago in 2018 when he ran it in 3:07:45.

He was fourth in his age group and in the top 100 men in this year's race.

Wow #2.  Lu Bouanga.  2:39 on the nose - 2:39:00 - in his debut marathon.

A Republic of Congo native, who lived in Gabon, Africa for 10 years before coming to the United States where he graduated from Westbury High School here in Houston, Lu ran collegiately for Allen Community College in Iola, Kansas and East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma.

Lu put a beatdown on the course for his 2:39 marathon debut!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

What's most crazy about Lu's marathon is that he started 10 minutes and 20 seconds behind the leader, stuck in the "B" corral.

Lots more good things to come from Lu.

Since Robert and Roger King started running with Volte, the majority of the time you see them they're not too much farther apart then they were at birth.

But the two brothers had different goals.

Robert's goal was to go full throttle all the way and he was rewarded with a sub-3, 2:59:57.  

In fact, he wasn't the last one to slip under three as Nele Lefeldt (Houston Harriers) and Eric Smith both timestamped their finish at 2:59:59.

In fact, there have been 22 finishes by a Robert King in the history of the Chevron Houston Marathon.

Most of them - 20, to be exact - have come from trailrunner - and good guy - Robert King in Porter, but our Robert King is the fastest of all-time.

Chris Branch completed his third Chevron Houston Marathon, including last year's virtual effort, in 3:13:58.

Running her sixth consecutive CHM, Devyn Cook posted yet another Boston Qualifier with a showing of 3:24:17 followed closely by Robert Cardnell, who finished his first certified marathon in 3:24:46.

Robert having a jolly good time - even at mile 23.5!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Jason Bodie debuted at Houston with a 3:31:10 and lowered his personal best in the process as he was down four minutes and 40 seconds from his Tunnel Light Marathon finish last September.

Meanwhile, Roger King sacrificed his race to help Jane Campbell not only set a new personal best in a huge way, but also qualified for Boston.

Jane Campbell got a Marine escort to her PR and BQ!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

They ran together in a time of 3:36:11 as Jane shaved 34 minutes and 11 seconds off of her previous marathon best from last September's Tunnel Light Marathon.

With her eighth career CHM finish, Shannon Truman also set a new personal best and qualified for Boston with a 3:39:36 that broke her previous marathon best of 3:47:24 from the 2010 CHM.

Yaya Herrera and Judith Albarran kept it within a minute of each other as Yaya finished her fourth Houston in 3:43:11, grabbing a Boston qualifier in the process, while Judith finished her sixth Houston, including last year's virtual, with a 3:43:44.

The only thing Yaya didn't ask anyone to hold was her beer at the end of the race!
She handed a water bottle to Nine Volte at mile 20 and gloves here at mile 24
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Consider that Judith's very first Houston Marathon was a 5:07:32 in 2014.  Wow.

After notching a 1:53:25 at the Aramco Houston Half Marathon two years ago, Kim White let that - and his training - be his guide to a sub-4 at Houston for the first time of his three CHM finishes.  

He did so with a time of 3:53:09.

Gourav Kumar finished his third career CHM with a time of 3:55:04 while Michelle McGill ran her 15th consecutive CHM - not including the 2021 virtual year, recording a time of 3:58:23 that gave her 10th sub-4 at Houston in the last 11 runnings.

And yet another Boston qualifier to boot for Michelle.

Julie Stevenson ran her seventh CHM - to go with four Aramco Houston Half Marathons - as she finished in 4:16:42 for her best Houston finish ever.

And Susan Rouse, the woman with the second most number of finishers ever at the Houston Marathon (37!) by a female, turned in a time of 4:34:48, carving off tons of minutes from the last two runnings.

We are so honored that Susan chose to run her 37th Chevron Houston Marathon as a Volte athlete!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Volte had 12 friends run the Chevron Houston Marathon.

The ladies were led by Erika Park.

When her pacing gig didn't pan out (not an official race pacing assignment), Erika ran her own race and dazzled with a 3:16:05.

Josh Rivas led the men with a 3:19:21 finish - his fastest of the 11 on the actual CHM course.  (Josh had run an official 3:16:21 virtual race in the 2021 pandemic year.)

Tabata Cooke sizzled in her debut CHM with a 3:23:59 while Terence Baptiste was next in line for the men with a 3:33:21 which now leaves him one marathon away from Legacy status at Houston.

Antonio Alvarado almost mirrored his 2020 CHM effort of 3:39:12 with a 3:39:30 while C. Stephenson-Lake threw down her fastest Houston Marathon of eight with a time of 3:41:42.

Debuting at Houston was Pamela Ebbs with a 3:49:19, followed closely by Urica Chevis' 3:50:26.

Perhaps the person that was excited as Amelie Dinh about her third place age group finish - other than her father who ran with her - was Volte founder Bill Dwyer.

Amelie is a 17-year-old young lady who finished in 4:21:41, but her father, Than, who is now 50, was a runner at Spring High School that Bill spent some time coaching in his formative years.

Who says that the gift of running doesn't stop giving?

And rounding out our friends' efforts were Patricia Hernandez with her 4:43:03 showing and Andy Brock's 17th Houston Marathon that he completed in 5:09:39.

PR:  Lo Bouanga (BQ), Robert Cardnell, Jane Campbell (BQ), Shannon Truman, Ramon Rosales (BQ), Jason Bodie

Additional BQs:  Chris Branch, Devyn Cook, Yaya Herrera, Robert King, Michelle McGill, Shannon Truman

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Volte Represents In First Major Events of 2022: We Are Houston 5K and Aramco Houston Half Marathon

The Chevron Houston Marathon and the Legacy Capital The Woodlands Marathon are the two biggest events for Volte on an annual basis.

The Boston Marathon, Tunnel Light Marathon and the BCS Marathon would be second tier events, but only in terms of the number of Volte athletes participating in them each year.

The hope of a great year of running always finds the Houston Marathon as its jumping off point.

For the last many years, Houston puts on the We Are Houston 5K the day before the main event.

This year, it was run on Saturday, January 15 and starts on the north side of Discovery Green in downtown Houston and finishes on the south side, just in front of the Americas Hilton.

Many will run it as part of the event's Houston Double, where you earn a second medal for running the 5K on Saturday and the marathon or half marathon the following day.

Erika Sampson led us with a time of 26:02 while 12-year-old Theodore Bodie wasn't too far behind in 26:40.

With bling on his mind, Mike Kuykendall took it easy, had fun and punched out a time of 35:50.

Our Jason Bodie's wife and daughter, Lea and Olivia, finished together in 48:49.

Volte friends also got in on the 5K action.

C. Stephenson-Lake, two weeks removed from her win at the Texas Marathon in Kingwood, put down a time of 22:36 to grab third place in her age group, while Sonia Dhoapkar and Urica Chevis posted times of 25:41 and 29:54, respectively.

While we've missed the Trejo family at Texas 10 Series races, it was good to see them in the results as Lusi took the household bragging rights with a time of 32:58 while Alvaro finished in 38:54.

Meanwhile, the Rivas family also had some running fun.  Kylie, 13, got third in her age group with a mark of 23:24, while Vicenta did great too, running it in 34:06.

In the Aramco Houston Half Marathon, we had 19 Volte athletes finish - with six personal bests - and 10 of our friends.

Slicing eight minutes and 30 seconds off his time at last year's The Woodlands Half Marathon was Paolo Biagi, who posted the fastest time of our bunch in 1:42:04.

Can't miss Paolo Biagi here running tall to lead Volte in the Aramco Houston Half Marathon
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

In close pursuit was Rob Gay, who bettered his Huntsville Half Marathon effort from a year ago by three minutes and 38 seconds with an effort of 1:42:46.

Erika Sampson and Lillian Evans were the next two to the finish line with times of 1:44:53 and 1:46:29, respectively.  

Lillian lowered his best time ever by 54 seconds from her Aramco Houston Half time from two years ago.

The personal best wave continued in a big way as Auggie Campbell lowered his Aramco Houston Half time from 2020 by five minutes and 42 seconds to 1:48:10.

Just under an hour and 50 minutes was Sandra Tezino's showing of 1:49:38, while Tammy Grado and Carlos Rodriguez were a shade over.

Tammy had her best half marathon effort ever with a time of 1:50:35 as she took down her previous best from The Woodlands Half Marathon in 2020 by a minute and 55 seconds, while Carlos had a mark of 1:50:44.

Pretty appropriate that two good friends - Michael Gayle and Scott Haney - stick kind of close together out on the course as Michael finished in 1:55:49 while Scott was not too far away in 1:57:56.

Stephanie Stevenson finished her second career Aramco Houston Half Marathon with a time of 2:00:04.

Bettering not only her personal best at the distance but also her previous time in the Aramco Half was Sue Griffis.

Nearly deciding not to run it the day before, after a great training cycle, Sue Griffis
proved that her efforts were worth it with a 2-minute, 38-second PR!
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

With her 2:03:16, she dropped her time by two minutes and 38 seconds from the Run Girl Half Marathon in December 2012 - and shaved more than 28 minutes from her 2:31:46 time in the 2011 Aramco Houston Half Marathon.

Dan Jordan finished his fifth straight Aramco Houston Half Marathon with a 2:09:04 that was more than five minutes better off of his virtual Aramco Half effort with a year ago.

Double Legacy runner Rich Cooper added another half marathon finish to get him to 11 overall -- and 22 marathons or half marathons at Houston.

His time of 2:14:19 was his best at the Aramco Houston Half Marathon since 2015.

Also working her way to Legacy status is Sherry Cameron as she finished her eighth Aramco Houston Half and this year's time of 2:32:56 was the best of all of them.

She also finished the marathon at Houston in 2015 in 5:44:31.

Trudy Regnier ran her first Aramco Houston Half Marathon since 2008, finishing in 2:37:22.  She has run four Chevron Houston Marathons and three Aramco Half Marathons.

Completing her sixth Aramco Half in the last eight years was Naika Vargas, running the distance in 2:39:04, while Mike Kuykendall completed the Houston Double with a 2:55:34 half marathon performance.  That finish leaves Mike two away from becoming a Legacy Runner.

And Isaac Rodriguez had his third half marathon finish in the last four years with a time of 3:07:30.

Lots of our Volte friends also ran very well.

Rip Reynolds and Stoya Laydevant earned age group placements of second and first, respectively, with times of 1:29:19 and 1:34:11.

Stoya's parents, Meri and Pierre, finished in 1:48:52 and 2:10:03, giving the family 17 combined finishes at Houston since 2015.

Meri has run four marathons and three half marathons, while Pierre and Stoya have run five half marathons each.

Kahn Grice finished his 18th Houston event with a 1:42:04 half marathon to give him four 13.1-mile finishes to go along with 14 marathons.

Likewise, Sonia Dhodapkar has a lot of finishes as she polished off her seventh straight Aramco Half in 1:43:42, the last three all coming in the 1:43-minute.  She finished the marathon also in 2014 and 2015.

Former Rice Owl Erica Falcon ran her first Aramco Houston Half Marathon in 20 years as she recorded a time of 2:02:22.  Her 1994 cross country team was inducted into Rice's Athletics Hall of Fame earlier this year for winning the 1994 Southwest Conference cross country championship - the first for any women's program in Rice's history.

Alvaro and Lusi Trejo finished in 2:22:10 and 2:48:33, respectively, while Woodlands Fit's Mariela Rodriguez finished her second straight Aramco Houston Half Marathon with a time of 2:49:36.

Volte Ends 2021 With A Bang; Rolling Into 2022!

Nine Volte's had a busy first quarter of 2022.

Time to try - with some of the sheer craziness out of the way - and close the gaps on Volte's result recaps.

Volte kicked off 2022 in grand fashion with some of our good folks ringing in the New Year picking up a shiny new belt buckle from the Snowdrop Foundation.

Juan Murillo and Mimi Torrez both participated in the Snowdrop 55-Hour Ultra.

Juan covered 115.99 miles while Mimi called it a day - and a night - at 100.11 miles.

It was Juan's third Snowdrop finish.  He ran 109.77 miles in 2019 and 107.012 in 2020, making 2022 a personal best at the event.

He also has two 100-mile finishes at Brazos Bend in 2016 and 2021 and his all-time personal best is a 130-mile effort at the 48-hour Jackalope Jam race in Cat Spring in 2017.

Meanwhile, Mimi was completing her second Snowdrop to go with the first one that she finished in 2018.  

Mimi also ran the Yeti 100 Mile Challenge Virtual to close out the 2020 calendar year.

There was one race after the BCS Marathon and Half Marathon and that was the Run The Woodlands 5K on Christmas Day.

Volte founder Bill Dwyer and Jon Walk -- aka as Friends of the Running Community -- hosted the last race of the Series' 22nd year to give the Fleet Feet staff a day off -- or to keep it from being canceled.

Gourav Kumar ran it in 27:18 while Waverly Walk also covered the distance in 33:03, while Volte friends John Slate and Vincent Attanucci ran it in 25:28 and 36:51, respectively.

Starting with the final Texas Marathon and Half Marathon ever to be produced by original race directors Steve and Paula Boone on New Year's Day.

The couple has purchased property just outside of Woodville, Texas and will be working to clear and develop the land.

They will work in tandem with the Knights of Columbus, who will be taking the race over in 2023 and beyond.

Three of our Volte athletes ran the Half Marathon.

Sandra Tezino led the way in 1:56:42 while Waverly Walk and Sherry Cameron ran the 13.1 miles in 2:37:32 and 2:46:46, respectively.  Cameron ran much of the way with Volte friend and former Battling Blogger of the Texas Republic TIR runner Edwin Quarles.

Sandra Tezino is all smiles after finishing the Texas Half Marathon on New Year's Day
(Photo courtesy of Jon Walk)

Volte friend David Keithley of the Seven Hills Running Club also ran the half, doing so in 2:24:11.

C. Stephenson-Lake, another one of our Volte friends, won the Texas Marathon in 3:44:58.

After leaving the company that took over the Run Houston Race Series and the Bayou City Half Marathon Series, Ron Stitt went out on his own and started up HTX Events.

His first race was the Vintage Park New Year's Day Classic 5K and 10K, in the aforementioned location.

Erica Sampson was the first overall female masters runner with a winning 5K time of 22:58 while Jane Campbell wasn't too far behind, winning her age group in 24:07.

Erica Sampson comes into the finish to start off the year with an overall Masters' win.
(Photo courtesy of Bill Dwyer)

Many of our longtime Strike Force Racing friends also ran the 5K.

Scott Mayer led this group with a second-place age group finishing mark of 22 minutes even.  

Greg and Gena Alvarez ran together, doing so in 29:04.

Stopping the clock at 33 minutes even was Lynn Flora while Dee Akers ended her race after 35:19.

Second overall in the Vintage Park New Year's Day Classic 1K was Evie Campbell, who registered a time of 5:11.

Rounding out the pre-Chevron Houston Marathon events were a good small group for the first The Woodlands Running Club Sunday Night 5Ks on Sunday, January 2.

Jerritt Park went unchallenged to pick up the overall win in 23:39 while Devyn Cook was the women's winner in 26:12.

Steven Sfeir beat Layton Gill to the finish line by 17 seconds in a time of 28:19 and George Rux brought all of our Voltes in 30:56.

The following weekend, George made his annual trip to Walt Disney World to run in their Series of races.

He started off Thursday with a leisurely 5K of 56:59, turned in a nice 10K time on Friday of 1:06:03 and then capped off his efforts with a 2:38:25 

That same Saturday, January 8, here in Houston, Volte friend Dr. John Slate of the Seven Hills Running Club won his age group at the Run Houston! Sam Houston Race Park 10K in 51:18.

Congratulations to all!

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Facebook Page Profile: Volte Friends Scott Mayer and Rip Reynolds - Sunday, March 13, 2022

A couple of our Volte friends who got captured in the lens of David Reynolds with Digital Knight Productions were Strike Force Racing's Scott Mayer and Fleet Feet Sports' Rip Reynolds.

Scott and his wife Tarrah go back to the Team Strive days, under the direction of Kim Hager (and involvement of our Bill Dwyer), and more recently, upon their return to The Woodlands a few years ago, Scott wears the triathlon kit of Gena and Greg Alvarez's Strike Force Racing.

It was just Scott's fourth time to run The Woodlands Half Marathon, while Tarrah had run it in 2012 and 2019.

He covered the course in 1:51:17.

Meanwhile, Reynolds is one of only eight runners who have run all 11 Houston Methodist The Woodlands Half Marathons.

He joins Kathy McWilliams, Camellia Jacks, Carlos Sepulveda, Edward Campos, Lyndon Yates, Rich Fredrich and Valerie Byers.

But what sets Rip apart is his level of consistency.

2012 - age 45 - 1:28:47
2013 - age 46 - 1:28:09
2014 - age 47 - 1:30:28
2015 - age 48 - 1:28:58
2016 - age 49 - 1:29:04
2017 - age 50 - 1:28:43
2018 - age 51 - 1:29:07
2019 - age 52 - 1:27:56
2020 - age 53 - 1:28:16
2021 - age 54 - 1:27:33
2022 - age 55 - 1:28:41

Just wow.

Scott Mayer, Strike Force Racing

Rip Reynolds, Fleet Feet Sports

Photos Courtesy of David Reynolds, Digital Knight Productions

Facebook Page Profile: Mayra Caamano - Saturday, March 12, 2022

Four Volte runners on Saturday finished their eighth individual event at The Woodlands Marathon.

Rob Myers and Susan Rouse had both already finished six half marathons and two marathons, but did not race this weekend.

Kim White ran the 5K last week in 22:12 and the half marathon on Saturday in 1:44:51 to give him four marathons, two half marathons and two 5Ks.

Naika Vargas finished the half marathon in 2:36:39 for her sixth half marathon to go with two marathons while Neven Krstulovic-Opara finished the marathon in 6:05:12 for his sixth marathon to go with two halves.

That leaves Mayra Caamano, who is seen in the picture below jockeying for position on The Waterway with Rachel Pettit-Scott (2366) and Kyle Evans (5190).

Caamano finished her fifth half marathon (2013, 2015, 2016, 2021 and 2022) to go with three marathons (2012, 2017 and 2018).

She recorded a time of 1:45:03 on Saturday.

Caamano has also participated in relays two of the remaining three years in the 11-year history of the event.

In the race's other warm start, 2014 (other than this past Saturday), Mayra was supposed to team up with Juliee Sparks to form Team Sparky Beasts, but a change was necessary and Erica (Cahill) Coleman stepped in, formed Volte 1 and the two meted out a 3:23:56 marathon -- good for fourth overall.

Two years ago in 2020, Caamano teamed up with Meredith Moss, Bonnie Scholz and Holly Benson - aka Volte Vamps 2 - as the group donned Superwoman outfits to finish second in their division in 3:12:38.


Photo courtesy of David Reynolds, Digital Knight Productions