Feb. 20, 2015
For immediate release

National title, personal best at Boston highlight 2014

Sacramento’s Iain Mickle won a national 8k title, celebrated the Boston Strong spirit with a personal best in the marathon at age 53 and delivered a series of other impressive performances

in 2014.

The corporate and securities attorney’s running resume earned him the Sacramento Running Association’s Athlete of the Year Award. Mickle will be honored at the SRA’s Hall of Fame and Annual Achievement Awards Dinner on Saturday at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Sacramento.

The SRA will also induct six runners into its Hall of Fame: California International Marathon co-founder Sally Edwards, legendary Jesuit High School coach Walt Lange, Jesuit distance stars Eric and Mark Mastalir, masters standout Jim O’Neil and talented ultramarathoner Bill Finkbeiner.

More than 40 local runners and coaches will be honored with the SRA’s Annual Achievement Awards. Tickets for the 6 p.m. event are $50. For more information, visit www.runsra.org.

Mickle follows in the footsteps of 2012 Athlete of the Year winner Kim Conley and 2013 selection Shadrack Biwott.

“Those guys are totally out of my class,” Mickle said.

Modesty aside, Mickle’s 2014 performances suggest otherwise.

His first Boston Marathon experience came in 2013, when he finished in 2 hours, 39 minutes and 57 seconds. Mickle was back in his hotel room when he learned of the bombings near the finish line.

Last year, he returned to deliver a 2:38:38 personal best, finishing third in the 50-54 age group and 281st overall.

“It went really well until mile 21 or so,” he said. “I was able to go through the first 20 miles in under two hours.”

Not bad for a guy whose back was bothering him so much he didn’t know if he’d be able to run in the race.

“The night before the race I was freaking out,” Mickle said. “A mile into it, what if I have back spasms? The day before Boston I wasn’t even able to run. I put ice on it.

“The gun went off. With the adrenaline at the start, it wasn’t an issue.”

Mickle also savored the spirit of the Boston and running communities in standing strong a year after the bombings.

“It was a wonderful experience,” he said. “The whole Boston community, Boston Strong, really made it very impressive. It was just a great showing.”

Mickle delivered a great showing at the USA Masters 8k Championships in Brea, Calif., finishing in 26:53. That effort gave him the age-graded national title.

Age grading levels the playing field for runners of all ages. The World Association of Veteran Athletes developed a scale allowing runners to compare and compete with others of different ages based on how close they come to an ideal performance for someone their age and gender.

Mickle’s time gave him a 92.37 % age grade. Any score higher than 90 percent is considered world class.

“That was a real thrill for me,” he said. “I’d never run in a national championship before. That was a lot of fun.”

Mickle, who competes for the River City Rebels, enjoyed several other top efforts in 2014. He finished the NorCal John Frank Memorial 10-Miler in 55:59 (92.35% age grade), the Zoo Zoom 5k in 16:12 (93.29%), the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run in 55:44 (92.76%) and the Marin Memorial 10k in 34:42 (90.65%).

USA Track & Field selected Mickle as its Long Distance Running Athlete of the Year for the 50-54 age group.

What’s a good training week?

“My sweet spot is if I can get in 80 miles a week,” said Mickle, who is married to Casey and has two adult children, Colin and Olivia. His daughter ran in college for Brown and Texas and recently delivered a 1:16:19 half marathon best.

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding new ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.

SRA events include the Credit Union SACTOWN Five- and Ten-Mile Run on April 12, the Gold Rush 50k on May 9, the California International Marathon on Dec. 6 and the recently concluded Super Sunday Run.

SRA Annual Achievement Awards

Open division
Charlie Brenneman, Men’s Open Cross Country/Road Racing Athlete; Claudia Copeland, Women’s Open Cross Country Athlete; Brendan Gregg, Men’s Open Track Athlete; Kim Conley, Women’s Open Track Athlete; Anthony Costales, Men’s Open Marathon Athlete; Jane Kibii, Women’s Open Marathon/Road Racing Athlete; Tim Tollefson, Men’s Open Ultra Athlete; Julie Fingar, Women’s Open Ultra Athlete.

College division
Abdul Hamid, Men’s Cross Country Athlete; Christine Hoffmann, Women’s Cross Country Athlete; Rick Anderson, College Cross Country Coach; Nathan Strum, Men’s College Track Athlete; Courtney Anderson, Women’s College Track Athlete; Drew Wartenburg, College Track Coach.

High School
Edward Chance, Boys High School Cross Country Athlete; Fiona O’Keeffe, Girls High School Cross Country Athlete; Randall Fee, Boys High School Cross Country Coach; Melanie Cleland, Girls High School Cross Country Coach; Garrett Migliozzi, Boys High School Track Athlete; Kendall Derry, Girls High School Track Athlete; Bill Gregg, High School Track Coach.

Gary Blanco, Men’s Masters Cross Country Athlete; Beth Bourne, Women’s Masters Cross Country Athlete; Chris Knorzer, Men’s Masters Marathon/Road Racing Athlete; Kristen Soloway, Women’s Masters Marathon Athlete; Midori Sperandeo, Women’s Masters Road Racing Athlete; Erik Skaden, Men’s Masters Ultra Athlete; Jen Pfeifer, Women’s Masters Ultra Athlete.

Iain Mickle, Men’s Seniors Cross Country Athlete; Carla Kehoe, Women’s Seniors Cross Country Athlete; Rich Hanna, Men’s Seniors Marathon Athlete; Jenny Hitchings, Women’s Seniors Marathon Athlete; Terry Baucom, Men’s Seniors Road Racing Athlete; Karen Jeffers, Women’s Seniors Road Racing Athlete; Ron Hess, Men’s Seniors Ultra Athlete; Meghan Arbogast, Women’s Seniors Ultra Athlete.

Super Seniors
Richard Powers, Men’s Super Seniors Marathon Athlete; Janice Kesterson, Women’s Super Seniors Marathon/Road Racing Athlete; Ron Souza, Men’s Super Seniors Road Racing Athlete; Kuni Yamagata, Men’s Super Seniors Ultra Athlete; Bettie Smith, Women’s Super Seniors Ultra Athlete; Glenn Misono, Men’s Super Seniors Cross Country Athlete.

Howard Ferris, Men’s Veteran Marathon Athlete; Muffet McCleneghan, Women’s Veterans Marathon Athlete; Ronald Gross, Men’s Veteran Road Racing Athlete; Carolyn Slavich, Women’s Veteran Road Racing Athlete; Fred Martin, Men’s Veteran Cross Country Athlete; Lynne Hurrell, Women’s Veteran Cross Country Athlete.

Kirsten Van Tuyl, Youth Fitness Educator of the Year; James Adamic, Volunteer of the Year.