Angell travels the country to win 2017 USATF Grand Prix

The 2017 USATF Masters Grand Prix concluded recently and David Angell. 41. (Blue Ridge, VA) was declared the winner of the 40-44 division. A total of 173 athletes scored points in the division.

Angell was one of only three in the country to compete in all nine USATF national championships in 2017 and amassed a total of 850 points. The series rules stipulate that the athlete’s best five scores will be their official score with 500 points being the highest score possible.  Angell’s official score was 495 points; just five points shy of a perfect score.
During the year he won four national titles, finished as the runner-up two times, was third at the half marathon championships and picked up fourth place finishes twice.  His four national titles were the at the 5 km, 8 km, 10 km, and 15 km distances.
His travels took him to Oregon, Massachusetts (2 times), California, Michigan, New York, Oklahoma, Kentucky, and Virginia Beach.
“I had a great time competing in the grand prix this year, reflected Angell recently.  “It was one of the most exciting years of racing I’ve had and it put a whole new perspective on things.  I had to think about the series as a whole and be prepared for a variety of distances instead of focusing on just one race, so it made things very challenging.  Some of the races, like the 1 mile and XC races, were a little outside my recent comfort zone, but hopefully tackling them again made me a better runner.  The travel did get a little hectic at times, especially if the races were close together, but it was worth it. I was able to see parts of the country that I’d never been to, so that was an added bonus.  I also got to meet a bunch of new people that I’ve become great friends with, even though they might live on the entire other side of the country.  It’s amazing how running and competing towards a common goal at this level can create bonds between people who come from completely different walks of life.  I’m really looking forward to having more showdowns with some of these guys in the years to come.”
His best performance, based on the age-graded scoring tables, came at the 5 km championships in Syracuse, N.Y. where his 15:37 converted to 87.78%.   At the 8 km championships in Virginia Beach his 25:24 resulted in a 87.14% score.  Reflecting on this, Angell offered “I would like to start improving my age graded scores. I’ve never age graded over 90%, so I’d like to meet that standard at some point. It’s hard to do well in the age grading when you’re at the lower end of the spectrum.  So hopefully being a little older, even if it’s just by 1 year, will allow me to score a little higher.”

Travel and planning to compete in nine championships took alot of attention to detail especially since he lives over three hours from the major airline hubs in Richmond, Washington D.C., and Charlotte, N.C.  Most of his flights were out of the Roanoke regional airport with connections through Charlotte or one of the Washington airports.  He drove to Virginia Beach (4 1/2 hours) for the 8 km championships in March and Lexington, KY (5 1/2 hours) for the 10 km cross country championships in December.
Breaking down Angells’ 2017 championships:
Cities visited
Bend, OR (8 km Cross Country)
Boston, MA (5 km Cross Country)
Costa Mesa, CA (Half Marathon)
Flint, MI (1 mile)
Dedham, MA (10 km)
Lexington, KY (10 km Cross Country)
Syracuse, NY (5 km)
Tulsa, OK (15 km)
Virginia Beach, VA (8 km)

When asked what his favorite city was from his travels he replied, “I’d have to say Bend, Oregon for the XC Champs was probably my favorite city.  It's a bit of a different world out there from VA.  But it was a nice little town that seemed to be outdoors oriented.  Of course the 18-20 inches of snow on the ground made for an interesting trip.  I'm still amazed they were able to get the course in race shape.”
Top road performances (by age-graded performance)
1. 87.78% - 5 km (15:37)
2. 87.14% - 8 km (25:24)
3. 84.97% - 10 km (32:37)
4. 84.42% - 1 mile (4:39)
5. 84.40% - 15 km (50:25)
6. 83.05% - Half Marathon (1:12:18)
Road performances (by distance)
1 mile - 4:39 (2nd place)
5 km - 15:37 (1st place)
8 km - 25:24 (1st place)
10 km - 32:37 (1st place)
15 km - 50:25 (1st place)
Half Marathon - 1:12:18 (3rd place)
Cross country championship performances
5 km - 2nd place
8 km  - 4th place
10 km - 4th place

2017 USATF Masters Grand Prix - Final Standings   men   women
2018 USATF Masters Grand Prix Schedule

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