June 11, 2004 – The V.I. Track and Field Federation announced that Lisah Hamilton set a new V.I. record in the marathon June 6 at the Rock 'N' Roll Marathon in San Diego, Cal. It was her first marathon.
Running her first marathon under windy and humid conditions, Hamilton finished seventh in the event and was the first American female runner to cross the finish line in 2 hours 43 minutes and 59 seconds. The previous V.I. record, held by Jackie Morgan, was 2:55.06 in Jacksonville, Fla., in 1999.
For Hamilton's build-up for the race, she increased her weekly running to more than 70 miles with races up to half-marathon distance and long runs of 20 miles once per week. The Rock 'N' Roll Marathon had 20,231 participants, 7,640 of them women.
Hamilton has had a successful road running career in that she has finished first in a number of important road races in the Philadelphia area including the annual Runner's World Half-Marathon last month, which she won in a time of 1 hour and 21 minutes and finished 14 overall among 2,000 plus men and women (she trained through it and did not use full effort). She represented the Virgin Islands on the V.I. National Cross-Country Team at the Central America and Caribbean Cross-Country Championships in Acapulco, Mexico, last year and was the captain of the V.I. team at the World Cross-Country Championships in Lausanne, Switzerland, in 2002 and in Brussels, Belgium, in March of this year. She "trained through" that race also as she was building up for the marathon while experiencing plantar fasciitis, a foot injury.
No stranger to international competition, she competed as a swimmer for the Virgin Islands in a number of regional competitions as a member of the St. Croix Dolphins Swim Club. During those years she was teammate with Trisha Duncan, a V.I. Olympic Swimmer at the Seoul Olympic Games. and Trisha's brother, Timmy Duncan, National Basketball Association star and a member of the 2004 Athens Olympic Basketball team for the United States. She ran in a number of regional track and field meets including the Central America and Caribbean Games in Venezuela. She has run the Women Race and has the record for the annual 3Kings Mile (4:58).
Lisah was advised and encouraged to move up to the marathon by Dr. Marlon Williams and Wallace Williams, both Olympic marathon runners and mainstays of the Virgin Islands Pace Runners, after they noticed a few years back when she ran several laps of the rugged Carambola Golf Course with them that she exemplified enormous potential for long-distance running. She was afforded elite status at the prestigious Rock 'N' Roll Marathon as a result of the efforts of Larry Williams, a marathon veteran residing in St. Croix, and one of the founders of the Rock 'N' Roll marathon.
The performance in San Diego designates Lisah Hamilton as one of the top five female marathon runners in the Caribbean and one of the best marathon runners in the United States. She is supported by the V.I. Track and Field Federation as a V.I. National Team member and by the V.I. Olympic Committee, which provides her with a monthly Athens Olympics Training Grant.
For an earlier Source article, see Lisah Hamilton: Swimmer to Champion Runner.
Editor's note: This article was provided to the Source by Wallace Williams of the V.I. Track and Field Federation and Virgin Islands Pace.
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