For some time now, I’ve wanted to produce a documentary film about female distance runners. I’ve been immersed in the running scene ever since I was 16. I ran Cross Country at Arizona State University and can remember skipping class my sophomore year of college to watch Joan Benoit compete in – and win! – the very first women’s Olympic Marathon in Los Angeles in 1984. Although my fastest times are now behind me, my passion for the sport has never waned. After moving to Chicago from L.A. in 1995, I discovered a robust and competitive running community that has never ceased to inspire and motivate me. Over the past 15 years, I began realizing that there are some really talented and fast women in Illinois who have what it takes to represent the U.S. at the Olympics. This film is about four of these ladies: Alona Banai, Beth Chenoweth, Christina Overbeck and Claudia Becque.

Beth, Christina and Claudia have all run sub-3:00 hour marathons (Claudia went to the 2008 Trials) and Alona ran a half marathon PR of 1:22 after taking up competitive racing in 2007. They all stand a great chance of qualifying for the 2012 U.S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Team Trials in Houston on January 12, 2012. There is a race in virtually every state on any given weekend and race registrations are selling out in record time, despite our nation’s current economic climate. Unfortunately, running continues to be a “niche” sport and even our elite athletes – particularly the women – still do not get the recognition, financial support or sponsorships that their male counterparts in other sports do. This film is for every woman who has ever put on a pair of running shoes and everyone who knows a female runner.

— Wendy Shulik, Producer/Director of Photography/Editor


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