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It was July 3rd in Forest Park and the start of a long holiday weekend for many. Twenty five runners, and every mosquito in New England, showed up to take on the 5000 meter cross country course. Temperatures were hot and the humidity was stifling in the woods. An easy run it would not be this evening.
GSH’s Julie Carroll, taking the night off from racing, was granted the honor of ringing the starters bell. As the bell sounded it would be GSH’s Cameron Cook taking the lead in the opening steps and never relenting. Cameron would cover the course unchallenged with a time of 18:41. The win was Cameron’s 2nd of the season (and two in a row) and 7th of his career. The 7 wins moved him into a tie with GSH’s Seth Robert for 17th place on the all-time win list. Second place went to Mark Erwin in 23:17 and the 3rd place male, 6th overall, was Jeffery Luke in 26:57. Male age group winners were Cameron in the Youth (0-19) division, Francis Olive was first Open (20-39) male with a time of 39:32, Jeffery Luke edged out GSH’s “Sweaty” Ed Carroll for top Master (40-49) in 26:57, NRA’s Tom Dywer finished in 27:04 and first in the Senior (50-59) division, and GSH’s Pete Stasz was first Veteran (60-69) in 47:27.
The women’s race would see a first-time winner as Lessica Luke completed the course in 23:40 (3rd place overall). The win earns her a place in the Summer Sizzler Hall of Fame win list. Second place female, and 4th overall, belonged to GSH’s Kathy McCarthy in 25:03 followed by GSH’s Kiana Eaton in 25:47. Female age group winners were Jessica in the Youth division, Maura Feeney’s time of 32:06 earner her first Open female, Bernadette Leal was first Master in 36:50 and Kathy McCarthy was the first Senior female.
I would like to remind everyone that the 36th annual 4th of July 5K will take place tomorrow, July 4th at 9am at the Basketball Hall of Fame in downtown Springfield. The course promised to be fast and flat with scenic views of the Connecticut River. Visit www.harriers.org for additional information.
Volunteers for the evening were Brian Goddu, Ed Carroll, Julie Carroll, Brian McCarthy and Bruce Kurtz. Special thanks to Brian & Kathy McCarthy for assisting Bruce with a ride home after he suffered a flat tire out on the trails. Teamwork in action! Please join us again next week for race #13, the 8K road race.