Each year, Rochester holds a Runner of the Year Series (RROY), which consists of 12 races. You are awarded points for the races you do and how well you do in them. There is no entry. It is automatic if you participate in an officially timed event. Information on the series and bunch of other great stuff can be found at www.grtconline.org.
After 9 events, Chad Byler is in first place for the men and Karen Blodgett is in first place for the women. Chad usually finishes a 5k in 15-16 minutes. Karen consistently runs in the 17s for a 5k. Karen was the third female overall at the Buffalo Half-Marathon in May, running a 1:21:41, 6:15/mile pace.
The website above also has a ‘Picture’ link. It has some really good pictures of some recent events. If you participated, you may find yourself.
Dana Buchanan broke the course record at the Jungle Jog backon July 21. She completed the 5k in 17:52, breaking the old record by 28 seconds. Georgia Tuttle would have broken the course record by 1 second at 18:19 if Dana had not broken it 27 seconds earlier. It’s a great course!. You get to run through the Zoo; a bit of a hill at the start but a nice downhill finish. At the Charlie McMullen mile in June, Dana ran a 5:06 to lead the woman followed by Sarah Loesch 5:08. This is peak season for running events, but they happen all year. You can find events, results and useful links at www.pcr-timing.com or www.yellowjacketracing.com. They cover most events in the Rochester area from the Freezeroo Series in early January to races in late December. That’s right — runners are a hardy bunch racing with temps in the 90s or below 0.
Last October at a race in Brighton a runner was hit by a … go ahead, guess. Did you guess a deer? Yep, a deer. It came right out of the woods on the path leading up to the canal path. Luckily she was OK.
On a cold and rainy Sunday morning last fall I watched a gentleman cross the finishing after completing a 5k. So what, you say? This gentleman was using an umbrella for a cane, was wearing dress shoes, and, oh yeah, he was 94 years old.
At the K9 5K in August, Eric Morse, from Vermont, and his faithful companion Murdock defended their title for a second year by completing the 3.1 miles in under 18 minutes both years. Murdock is 11-0 in dog races this year. The 5k is sponsored by Pet Saver and owners Russ and Brenda Herman. Russ is also a runner, and he and 11 others recently completed the Ragnar Relay; trekking from Cobourg, Canada to Niagara Falls, Canada (check out www.ragnarrelay.com). 200 miles, eh? You take turns and run straight through the night. There are no breaks except when you are not running a leg.
Page 2 of 2 - The Bergen Jenny Kuzma Memorial 5K was held Aug. 10. This is a RROY series race No. 8. A fast field is an understatement as 25 percent of the 400-some runners were under 19 minutes.
1st Overall - Michael Fout 14:22 All-American at Florida State, finished fourth at the D-I NCAA Track & Field Championships in the 10,000 meters this past season, won the 2007 High School Footlocker National Championships. Now living in Syracuse running for Stotan Racing.
1st Female Overall - Maegan Krifchin 16:22 Finished 2nd at the 2012 USA Half Marathon Championships, finished 13th and was the top American finisher at the World Half Marathon Championships October (2012). Krifchin broke her own 2011 course record of 16:29.
Both Fout & Krifchin won the 2013 USATF Niagara 5km Championships. Syracuse Chargers Mens & BDP women won the team titles. Scott Weeks edged out Mark Andrews and Kevin Collins to win the Masters title (15:36). Weeks at one time was ranked second in the world in the 800 meters in the Masters Division. Andrews & Collins ran 15:40. Both Andrews & Collins have won National Titles as a Master.
There are a bunch of super races coming up in September. RROY event 10 is the Rochester Marathon on Sept. 22. You can do the full, half or relay. It is great event. You will find supporters most of the course. Half of the marathon course is on the canal path. It’s a loop course meaning you finish about where you start. You will find plenty of parking and recovery food and drink after. There is the 5-mile Barktoberfest at Lollypop Farm on Sept. 21, the Ovarian Cancer Run at Cobbs Hill Park on the Sept. 15, Stokoe Farms 5K on the 14th — a great family event. Too many more to mention.
Me? I run for fun and participate in several events a year. I’m usually at some event on the weekends. Last year I came in second place at the Longest Runway 5k. The gentleman who won told me afterwards that there was no way he was going to get beat by a guy in a dress. Don’t knock it till you try it. My 15 minutes of fame came on YNN running up Cobbs hill in a dress.
I’m easy to find at most races. I am the one the medical staff is rushing to at the end of most races.
Until next time …
Joe Haungs is part of the Rochester running community. His involvement is more than just running races and being passed by kids saying, “mister, are you going to be OK?”. He has been married to Jan for 23 years and they have two daughters. Jan is at most events with her faithful companion, Daisy, one of their three dogs that behaves sometimes. Contact Joe with stories or ideas by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.