Find this page online at www.coolrunning.com/results/12/ma/May23_Summer_story.shtml
ATTENTION: Effective immediately, all runners under age 14 will run any Summer Sizzler race free of charge courtesy of the Greater Springfield Harriers. Bring out the entire family for a night of running and good times.
Week #6 of the Summer Sizzler race series returns to the 8000 meter road course under partly sunny skies and a humid 80 degrees F. After a few encouraging words from the race director the bell sounded and 27 runners took off towards the rose garden!
As the pack of runners made their way down Main Greeting Road course marshals were unable to determine who was in front. Much to the surprise of everyone in Forest Park it was darkhorse Dan McNair leading the field out of the park onto Trafton Street with Dave Estabrook on his hip. In the women’s field it was Laura Pelczarski and Julie Carroll battling for the top spot.
After a pause in the action as the field traversed the perimeter streets of the park Dave emerged on the far side of the ball field with no one else in sight. Dave cruised around the Walker Grandstands and broke the tape in 28:42 for his first win of the season and 6th of his career. Steve “Mr. Consistent” Virgadaula placed second overall and top Senior (50-59) in 21:49 and third place and top Youth (0-19) was Cameron Scott with a time of 34:16. It was a good night for the GSH crew as they swept the top three spots! Top Master (40-49) in 34:31 was SS’s Dominic Wilson and GSH’s Stan Kolpa earned top Veteran (60-69) with a time of 36:33.
The women’s race was back-and-forth through the streets of Springfield and Longmeadow but it was Laura Pelczarski out-legging GSH’s Julie Carroll to claim her first career Sizzler victory in 38:03 to Julie’s 38:20. With the win Laura gains entrance to the elite Sizzler Hall of Fame. Julie’s time was good for top Youth finisher. Third in the female division belonged to Tara Shewchuk in 46:51. Forth place in the women’s field belonged to Justine Cadieux and SS's Vicki Quagliaroli, celebrating a birthday this evening, claimed 5th place female, and top Senior, with a time of 54:18.
Another successful race was completed thanks to the help of volunteers Brian Goddu, Ed Carroll, Bruce Kurtz and Brian McCarthy. Next week brings us back to the 5K XC course for the 7th race in the series. I hope to see more young runners taking advantage of the new fee waiver (FREE RACE) for all kids under the age of 14.