The Green Team traveled to Gloucester for the sixth stop on the USATF-NE Grand Prix tour yesterday (Sept 14th). Overall it was a fine day for us. Albeit a bit chilly at the start. With the temp about 50 and a strong NW wind – we were all trying to figure out how to dress for this one. In the end most went with just singlets and made out fine (the sun helped a lot).
One the ladies side the fast improving Katie Gessler ran a 5K, 5 Mile and 10K PR to lead the way with a 40:12. With her most of the way was Candice Gagnon, who crossed in 40:34. The rest of the ladies team were gals scoring down from the older age divisions. First among them was, the never aging, Senior Trish Bourne in 40:57 and then Masters Kristen Allen in 43:29 and new club member Karen O’Dell in 43:46. All toll the ladies grabbed 8th the Open Division.
If you suspected they must have done well in the Masters division with Trish, Kristen and Karen, you’d be right on! The trio ran the Green Team to third place in the Ladies Masters division (ka-ching).
In the Seniors division, Trish was supported by Liane Pancoast (45:51) and Mary Casey-Gorman (47:46) to finish in fifth place.
Over on the guys side – it was Dan Button out front for the green with a time of 34:03. The ageless one, Senior Mark Reeder was next in an amazing 34:12 (that’s 92%+ on the age grader!). Patrick Mahoney followed Mark with a 35:48. As with the ladies, it was score downs that rounded out the team. Master Shawn Conway ran it in 36:34, with The Legend – Veteran John Barbour on his heels at 36:40 (that’s 91%!). That placed the Open Men at tenth.
The Mens Masters was also supported by score downs from the Seniors. With Mark first, then Shawn and John, next in was new club member (and husband to Karen) Mark O’Dell in 36:42 and the flaxen one EJ Hyrnowski two ticks back at 36:44 as the Masters Men finished sixth.
With lots of Senior (and older) talent scoring down, hopes were high to knock Whirlaway off the Senior pedestal. Alas it was not to be, as new comer Andrew Gordon was struck with a stomach virus Sunday morning and was scratched from the lineup. That meant the team of Mark, John and EJ was rounded out by Jim Garcia (37:44) and Ken Goodin (41:56) as they took Second Seniors (ka-ching) for the fourth time this year. Hard to know if Andrew would have changed the outcome – it would have been close.
Of course led by Johnny B – the Veteran Men easily dispatched all comers in the division for the sixth straight time, finishing as First Veterans (ka-ching). As usual it was Tom Peters next in 42:54 and for this one we had Stephen Sartori who was third man in 43:06. So strong was the Vets team, even without John, and almost any combo of our seven Vet runners it would have been enough to win. After the race we (the Vets) all breathed a sigh of relief – with a 10 point lead the Vets Division Championship is clinched, regardless of the marathon outcome.
Speaking of the Marathon outcome – that is the next and final stop on the tour, in Manchester on Nov 2nd. Sign up for that event, as it was last year, is done by you runners the individual runners. Be sure specify “Greater Lowell Road Runners” as your team. Each runner will be compensated $70 for competing after the event. Click here to go to the registration page (it’s $85 until Sept 30).