Aug. 16, 2012
For immediate release

Tapia, Robinson among standouts as group prepares for fall races

Energized by Kim Conley’s stunning run to London, the Sacramento Running Association’s Elite Team heads toward the fall with plenty of momentum.

Conley, an SRA Elite Team standout, rode the group’s support to a dramatic third-place finish in the women’s 5,000 meters at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials and a trip to the Olympic Games.

The former UC Davis standout didn’t disappoint there, either, recording a personal-best of 15 minutes, 14.48 seconds, well ahead of the 15:19.79 effort she delivered at the U.S. Trials in Eugene.

And while Conley didn’t advance out of the first round, her story was uplifting. She almost quit competitive running a few years ago, but Drew Wartenberg, her coach, convinced her to push on.

The Sacramento Running Association’s $10,000 training grant allowed her to step back from her assistant coaching duties with the Aggies to focus more on training.

“I think it is inspiring to a lot of people,” said Kevin Pool, who manages the SRA Elite Team. “It really exposed a lot of people to the Sacramento Running Association who maybe weren’t aware of it.”

While Conley was running like an Olympian, other SRA Elite Team members quietly continued to push the pace.

Daniel Tapia won the Salinas Valley Half Marathon earlier this month in 1:07:17. Renisha Robinson delivered a second-place finish in the Fast & Furious Road Mile in Pleasanton in her SRA debut. And Lindsay Tollefson grabbed third at the Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon with a personal-best 1:18:47 effort.

The fall outlook is promising. The SRA plans to compete in cross country events on the men’s and women’s side, starting with the Rebel Rebellion 5k on Sept. 1 at Granite Regional Park in Sacramento.

SRA’s presence will be felt in longer races, too, with newcomer Tim Tollefson and his wife Lindsay Tollefson planning to run in the Chicago Marathon on Oct. 7.

Tim Tollefson finished ninth in the California International Marathon last year, covering the 26.2 miles from Folsom to the state Capitol in 2:18:26. Tapia finished 24th in the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in January in Houston with a 2:15.28 effort.

Lindsay Tollefson owns a 2:43:00 marathon best, giving the SRA plenty of talent at that distance.

“I think our marathon group is pretty strong,” said Pool, a quality marathoner himself with a 2:19:22 personal best.

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding 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 California International Marathon, which celebrates its 30th anniversary on Dec. 2. Nearly 8,000 runners and more than 500 relay teams have already registered for the race.

Other SRA events include the Lake Natoma Four Bridges Half Marathon, The Super Bowl Sunday 10k Run and the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run.

SRA beneficiaries include the American River Parkway, youth fitness programs, local running venues and aspiring young runners.