In May, Benjamin Pachev of Orem, Utah, ran a 5,000m in 14:47.62 while wearing Crocs, and he was back in action in his foam clogs on June 5, this time on the road. Racing the Utah Valley Half Marathon, Pachev powered to a fourth-place finish in a remarkable time of 1:06:33. This is a new personal best for the 22-year-old runner, who comes from a family of Crocs-enthusiasts.
Pachev has been running in Crocs for a long time. In 2017, he and his sister and father made headlines after they each ran in Crocs at the Mini-Marathon in Indianapolis. That day, Pachev ran 1:11:53, earning him a 16th-place finish, and his father, Sasha, crossed the line in 44th, posting a time of 1:17:26. Pachev’s sister, Jennifer, ran the 5K in Indianapolis, and she flew to a 19:56 result, finishing ninth overall and as the second-fastest female runner.
In Pachev’s May race, which was in Portland, he placed 12th with his sub-15-minute run, beating about half of the field. On June 5, he finished in fourth out of more than 2,000 runners, and his 1:06:33 result (which works out to 3:09 per-kilometre pace) was only a minute and a half slower than the winner’s time of 1:05:08. Sasha also raced the Utah Valley Half Marathon, and like his son, he wore Crocs. He finished in 1:21:47, placing 35th overall and winning the masters race.
— Matt Kryger (@MattKryger) May 7, 2017
Sasha is the reason his family now runs in Crocs, as he told the Indy Star in an interview after the family’s race at the 2017 Mini-Marathon. “I was trying to figure out if there was a better way to run than in regular running shoes,” he said. “I was experimenting with different things.” His kids told him they preferred running and playing in Crocs, and he noticed that they had great form in the clogs. He tried a pair out for a run and was instantly sold.
“I really liked the feeling, and I’ve run in them ever since,” Sasha said. “They’re really not that much different, speed-wise, from racing flats.” Crocs are now the go-to shoes of the Pachev family, and they seem to be working out for them, as they continue to lay down impressive and jaw-dropping results.