| Outside magazine, March 1995|
As the unusually large five-man pack jockeyed for the final sprint at the 10,000-meter U.S. cross-country national championships last December in Portland, Oregon, 27-year-old Reuben Reina looked like toast, what with eight-time national champ Pat Porter and defending champion Todd Williams hanging on his shirt. But Reina, a former Olympian, obviously felt otherwise. A 5,000-meter specialist from Fayetteville, Arkansas, he happened to be loving the flat and very fast Blue Lake Park course. "With 60 meters left," he said after the race, "I knew the other guys had given all they had, but I still had something left." He was right -- barely. Reina crossed the finish line in 30 minutes flat, with Porter one second back. In fact, the top five finished within four seconds of one another, making it the closest finish in U.S. nationals history.