HIBBING — Geno Uhrbom already has an impressive running resume´.
After all, the Greenway/Nashwauk-Keewatin junior-to-be has won a State Class A cross country title and two track titles in the 1600 and 3200, to go along with some other impressive wins.
In Hibbing, Uhrbom had already won the Red Ore Run 10K and 5K races, but he hadn’t competed in the race in a couple of years.
Uhrbom returned to Hibbing Saturday to a new race on a new course, and he now has a course record as he ran a 16:23 to win the Kids Kare 5K race held near the Hibbing Memorial Arena.
Overall, Uhrbom liked the layout of the new course.
“The course was set up nicely,” Uhrbom said. “There wasn’t a lot of turns. It was flat. There were some small, gradual hills and there’s a downhill, so it was nice.”
With the success Uhrbom has had, no course is too challenging for him, but there’s one he likes in particular.
“The course for cross country at state, that’s the course that favors me a lot,” Uhrbom said.
Uhrbom said during this race, he didn’t come here to compete against any one individual. He had another motivation to run.
“I came in here to run my race, and to see how I could do to gauge my training,” Uhrbom said. “I wanted to get my training times and paces to get faster. I felt good, but in the last 1K, I started feeling it, so that’s something I need to work on.
“I have to do a lot of repeats, speed, distance workouts.”
Uhrbom took off fast and had nobody pushing him throughout the entire race.
How does he handle that?
“It’s me and my head the whole time,” Uhrbom said. “You have to convince yourself in your head to keep going. I just kind of go, and I try not to think about it.”
In second place was Hibbing’s Zach Rusich, who will be a sophomore this season on the Bluejacket cross country team.
Rusich knows all about Uhrbom’s exploits, and he knew there was no way he was going to catch him, so he went out and ran a smart race.
“Once I heard Geno was in it, I was going to try for second, trying break my time down to 18:50, and I got an 18:39,” Rusich said. “I was happy with that. You go for the best that you can get, do whatever you can when you have a guy like that that’s so far ahead of the competition.
“It’s going for your best, and race your time.”
At one point during the race, Rusich was trailing David Platt, and Dan Scally was near him. He finally broke away from Platt to finish in 18:42.
“David and I did a good team race,” Rusich said. “I have to compliment him. He did well. We went back-and-forth the whole race, helping each other along. Sadly, he ended up getting a side ache at the end of the race, so he couldn’t finish.
“I thank him for what he did.”
Rusich, who has put in just under 200 miles of training this summer, was happy with his outcome.
“It’s a great feeling, even though it’s just one of these little local 5K’s,” Rusich said. “You know you have to keep working for the season.
“I’ve been running quite a bit lately.”