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Lincoln Laboratory has many world-class researchers--and one champion runner. This spring, James Garcia ran the 2001 General Nutrition Center 100-kilometer in seven hours, five minutes and 58 seconds. Winning that race earned him a spot on the US team that competed Sunday, Aug. 26 at the World Championship 100K in Cleder, France.
The GNC 100 marks Garcia's first national 100K win, but this will be his sixth year on the US men's team (the top three finishers plus three others selected by committee go to the world championship).
The 100K race entails a little more than 12 trips around a five-mile loop. Competitors can grab water at rest stops, or stop for a few minutes to change shoes, doctor blisters or use the facilities. "But if you're good, you don't stop once," said Garcia, a Group 71 mechanical engineer with two MIT degrees (SB 1980, SM 1990).
He's also no slouch at shorter distances. His personal best for the Boston Marathon is a time of two hours and 25 minutes in 1994.
This year is special to Garcia in one other way as well: his son, also named James Garcia, just entered MIT as a freshman.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on August 29, 2001.