In the First Place, Rundell Has a Winning Goal in Mind

By Ryan Mink
Special to The Washington Post
Saturday, October 27, 2007

Carl Rundell had a choice between running in the U.S. Olympic trials a week from today in New York or in tomorrow's Marine Corps Marathon. After some thought, Rundell decided he has unfinished business in Washington.

Rundell has finished second the past three years in the Marine Corps Marathon. He led for more than 23 miles in 2004 before his body completely locked up. He lost by eight seconds in 2005, and then missed by more than a minute last year when he ran too fast early on.

"Everybody kept telling me that it's once in a lifetime to run the trials," Rundell said. "I was like, 'Yeah, well to win the Marine Corps Marathon would be once in a lifetime.' . . . I'm not giving up. I always thought it was third time, lucky. Now I'm thinking fourth time lucky."

Rundell, who qualified for the trials last year in Austin, likely will be chasing Ruben Garcia, the Marine Corps Marathon winner the past two years. Garcia has already said he wants "the trifecta," which would make him the first three-time champion in the marathon's history.

"I want it as badly as anyone else would want it when you're that close so many times," Rundell said. "But I always say you have to focus less on the winning and the losing. There's a Greek philosophy that says, 'It's whoever is willing to struggle the longest.' And I'm willing to struggle the longest."

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