2005 Bradley Award: Katie Wales

GBTC Names Bradley Award Winner

April 16, 2005
Boston, Massachusetts

Katie Wales (photo courtesy of Universal Sole).

The Greater Boston Track Club and Chicago’s Universal Sole announce that Katie Wales is the first recipient of the Margaret L. Bradley award. The award will be given annually in memory of Margaret L. Bradley, a long-distance runner who was a member of each club, who died tragically in the summer of 2004 at age 24. Her two clubs, GBTC and Universal Sole, joined to create the Margaret L. Bradley Award. Katie will receive the award in place of Adrien Ricci who suffered a disappointing injury at the last moment.

The award is intended for a young woman from Chicago’s Universal Sole Club, who is about the age that Bradley was when she died and about her ability, to compete in the Boston Marathon, and for a similar young women racer from the Greater Boston Track Club to compete in the Chicago Marathon in the fall.

Katie Wales will be coming to Boston to run her second marathon. She qualified for Boston with a 2:54 in Chicago. She is a first grade teacher. Katie went to high school in Indianapolis, Indiana, and college at Notre Dame where she majored in Spanish and Political Science. There she ran 3km in the 10:00 range, 5 km in 17:30 range, and a 10 km in 36:10 . Her cross-country team place 3rd in Division I National in 2002.

Margaret Bradley, a top finisher at the 108th Boston Marathon in April and a University of Chicago medical student, died while trail running in the Grand Canyon on July 8, 2004. Bradley was originally from Falmouth, MA, graduated from the University of Chicago in 2001, and according to the Chicago Sun Times, still ran up to 90 miles per week after being an All-America cross-country runner while in college. According to a press release from Grand Canyon National Park, Bradley was separated from her running partner and was eventually found by park officials in a drainage area near the Colorado River, dead from dehydration due to environmental heat exposure.

Bradley, 24, was a member of both Universal Sole Racing Team in the Chicagoland area and the Greater Boston Track Club, where she trained under Tom Derderian, veteran marathon journalist, runner, and coach. Chicago Athlete magazine had recently highlighted her as the June 2004 “Athlete of the Month.” She finished the 2004 Boston Marathon as the 13th American female (31st woman overall), in an official time of 3:04:54. At the 2003 Chicago Marathon, Bradley finished in a time of 2:59:30 (2:58:52 net time).

In August 2004, the Greater Boston Track Club board of directors approved the establishment of the Margaret L. Bradley Award to be given yearly to a female member of the Universal Sole Track Club in Chicago to pay expenses to race in the Boston Marathon. Similarly, the Universal Sole Track Club has approved a Margaret L. Bradley Award to be given yearly to a member of the Greater Boston Track Club to race in the Chicago Marathon.

The program seeks to remember Bradley, who was a member of both clubs, but who was GBTC’s first scorer on its winning open (18 years of age and older) team at the 2004 Boston Marathon. Later in the spring, she ran on the Universal Sole team which placed second in the USATF National 5K Championship (Freihofer’s Run for Women) in Albany, New York.

The two clubs intend for the award to continue in perpetuity for the purpose of recognizing and aiding aspiring, young, female marathoners who are of similar ability to that of Bradley. “The award will go to postcollegiate women marathoners who have a reasonable chance to run the times that Bradley ran,” writes Derderian.

Runners from both clubs conceived the idea when they met at Bradley’s funeral in her home town of Falmouth, Mass.

The Greater Boston Track Club will host a reception for Katie Wales on the Saturday evening before the marathon. See the GBTC web site for details: www.gbtc.org.

(A final post-marathon comment: Katie’s official finishing time was 3:04:54. It is remarkable to note that this is exactly the same time that Margaret ran in the 2004 Boston Marathon!)