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Neff Gets Canadian 50-K Record in Houston

By David Monti, @d9monti
(c) 2021 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved

(18-Jan) -- Canadian Calum Neff, an RRCA Certified Coach and Race Director, ran a pending national record 2:51:27 for 50 kilometers at a special competition held in Houston yesterday (Sunday).  Called the Hardloop Endurance 50-K Project 2021, the race was held on a USATF-certified and record-eligible course where the athletes ran a loop of 4880 meters ten times (plus an extra 1200m to make the full distance).

"The 50-K is where I always wanted to find myself, where I wanted to be," Neff, 33, told the Houston Chronicle.  "And I nailed it today."

The mark Neff surpassed was 2:53:20 by Andy Jones, also set in Houston back in 1991.  Although Canadian, Neff is a Houston-area resident.

Behind Neff, the second finisher was a woman, marathoner Sarah Cummings, 32, from New York City.  Cummings, who finished second in the JFK 50 Mile in Maryland last November, clocked 3:19:15 in her debut at the distance.  Although shy of the USA record of 3:13:51 by Janis Klecker set in 1983, hers was still a very good mark.

Elizabeth Northern, 33, finished just 20 seconds behind Cummings and was the second woman.  The top-4 women --Cummings, Northern, Chelsea Barr and Sarah Rabourn-- all achieved qualifying marks for USA team selection for the 2021 IAU 50-K World Championships in Taipei on October 31.

Forty-nine year-old Brian Haskett of Houston was the second man home in 3:19:20, five seconds behind Cummings.

A total of 18 athletes entered the race, but only six ran the full distance.

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