Boisean brings superpower to life – and wins Race to Robie Creek in her spare time

The Race to Robie Creek starts its 2018 Odyssey

The Race to Robie Creek began at noon on Saturday at Fort Boise Park. This year's theme was "2018: A Race Odyssey."
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The Race to Robie Creek began at noon on Saturday at Fort Boise Park. This year's theme was "2018: A Race Odyssey."

Megan Lacy has a full-time job as a mechanical engineer for a company she co-founded, Lumineye.

The 24-year-old Stanford graduate and her colleagues are creating wall-penetrating radar sensors for first responders and soldiers.

Used to bringing X-ray vision to life, Lacy has another superpower of sorts now – conquering the Race to Robie Creek.

Lacy completed the 13.1-mile half-marathon in 1 hour, 33 minutes and 44.23 seconds to win the women’s race Saturday on her first attempt. She was nearly 6 minutes ahead of Jessie Noah (1:39:20.19) of Cambridge.

(Find full race results here.)

“I was really not prepared for the heat. I mean, I think I handled it well – so I can’t be disappointed – but it hurt in a different way than I thought it was going to,” said Lacy, who joined the Boise State track and cross country teams as a graduate transfer in the fall of 2016. “I felt dizzy. I think I was dehydrated.”

In the men’s race, Boise’s Gus Gibbs tasted victory on his third try, crossing the finish line in 1:19:40.46, a little more than a minute ahead of running buddy Daniel Button (1:20:41.37). Both men are part of a local running club known as the Boise Billies.

“It’s an awesome sort of conglomeration of like-minded individuals who go out and have fun,” Gibbs said of the group. “We meet a few times a week, and it’s really the community that keeps me going. I will not be running if there isn’t somebody keeping me accountable. .... They help me stay off the couch.”

While Gibbs said he’s had an off-and-on relationship with running, Lacy has always been all-in with the sport.

The New Jersey native was a state cross country champion in 2010 and 2011 and won state track titles in the 1,600 and 3,200 meters for Cherokee High in Marlton, N.J., in 2012. During her career at Stanford, she helped the Cardinal take third at the 2012 NCAA Cross Country Championship as the No. 4 runner.

Once she arrived in Boise, Lacy kept hearing other runners talk about the Race to Robie Creek. It wasn’t until she wrapped up her career with the Broncos that she finally got the chance to face the grueling half-marathon, which includes an elevation climb of 2,072 feet to Aldape Summit.

“When I finished (college competition) I still kind of had the bug to keep training,” Lacy said. “I decided it would be fun to try and get into Robie, but I knew it was really hard to get a bib number for the race. ... Once I got one, I was like, ‘OK, I guess I’ll keep training.’

Lacy, who said she had never run anything longer than a 10-kilometer race before Robie, broke away from the rest of her female competitors early on.

“I felt good, but I thought I was being stupid because it was too early,” Lacy said. “I just felt like we were going too slow, so I went for it. I was thinking, ‘Man, I am really going to regret this, so that kind of stinks.’ But thankfully I got a big enough lead nobody caught me.”

Top Robie finishers

  • Men: 1. Gus Gibbs, Boise, 1:19:40.46; 2. Daniel Button, Eagle, 1:20:41.37; 3. Rick Floyd, Reno, Nev., 1:22:29.29; 4. Thomas Cameron, Bellevue, 1:24:25.02; 5. Garret Smith, Boise, 1:24:56.31.
  • Women: 1. Megan Lacy, Boise, 1:33:46.24; 2. Jessie Noah, Cambridge, 1:39:23.82; 3. Jodine Steemers, Boise, 1:40:24.20; 4. Amber Nickelson, Boise, 1:42:33.69; 5. Molly Mitchell, Boise, 1:43:04.26.
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