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> Printer-friendly page The First Ever “A Midsummer Lights Relay”

The First Ever “A Midsummer Lights Relay”



By astronomical means at about 8:27 p.m. the race started without a bang, a horn, or a go. When race director Tom Derderian played Taps on his harmonica, the runners who were perched on King Phillips Hill on the highest point on Deer Island in Boston Harbor gradually figured out that the race had begun, because the sun had set behind a narrow band of clouds. Immediately Team With a Vision, captained by vision-impaired runner Joe Quintanilla, took the lead. The were followed by Tom Walker’s Runners, a team composed mostly of jovial 20-somethings; the Greater Boston Track Club team, led by Tiffany Thompson; and Tammy’s Highlanders of Winthrop; all pursued by the Seacoast Striders of Winthrop.

On the next lap Walker’s Runners took the lead with Greater Boston in second. Greater Boston dropped to third by the next lap while the Street team took the lead.

But as the relay pushed on to midnight teams began to falter.


Greater Boston moved past Team With a Vision and Walker’s Runners but lost the lead to Seacoast by lap eleven at about 2 a.m. Greater Boston’s Maria Sun had passed Seacoaster Terry Vazquez to take the lead, but it seemed it would be short-lived because Seacoast had their fastest runner up next. But in a fuzz of sleepiness, that runner could not locate his shoes as Greater Boston’s Cynthia Hastings slipped away into the night. From then on, the Greater Boston Track Club team held the lead until the sun peeked over the clear, straight horizon of the Atlantic Ocean, ending the relay at about 5:07 am.

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