Written by Madeline Bost
Originally Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, June 24, 2012
On Sunday, June 24, 2012
Copyright, Madeline Bost, 2012
The Fitzgerald 1928 Lager 5K this evening in Glen Ridge is the final USATF New Jersey championship of the spring season. This is the second year for the increasingly popular race to host the masters men’s championship. In 2011 it drew 1,130, up by nearly 400 runners the previous year. Statistics can lie, however. In 2010 masters men had competed at Pine Beach that morning in what was then their championship 5K. A few people did drive to Glen Ridge that day, but not many wanted to do double 5K’s on a hot summer Sunday.
The 5K will be the third championship for masters men and it is very early to see a trend, but it is fun to speculate on what the season will be for the teams.
In the M40 division the Sneaker Factory has a two point lead after placing second at the Miles for Music 20K and winning the Clinton Country Run 15K. Raritan Valley won the Miles for Music 20K and placed third in the Clinton Country Run 15K. The possible spoiler team is the Fleet Feet Essex team that took second at the 15K and could easily win tonight if all their top M40 men are running.
The Shore Athletic team has two first place finishes in the M50 division and another will clinch their dominance in that division.
In the M60 division Shore and Raritan Valley are tied with a win and a second apiece. When the team grand prix first began, very few teams competed in the M60 division. Now it is on par with the younger men’s teams. That is actually not surprising, given that the Baby Boomers are now in, or soon to enter that age division.
Registration begins at 4:30 p.m. at Hurrell Field on Bloomfield Avenue with the start at 6:15 p.m. The race course has a net elevation drop with the best downhill in the first mile. The finish is on the track at Hurrell Field. Post race refreshments include Brooklyn Lager Beer from Fitzgerald’s 1928 for adult runners. Water or soda for the underage and pretzels for all runners.
BATTLE OF THE BUSINESS 5K
A night race is closer to home tomorrow night in Florham Park. The Battle of the Business 5K will be staged from the Green in Florham Park with registration opening at 6:00 p.m. with the race start at 7:30 p.m.
Not surprisingly, the race is heavy on corporate categories with men, women, and coed teams in two groups based on size of the company and a non corporate category as well. In addition to individual age division awards, the oldest and youngest runners will be recognized along with the largest corporate team.
FRANTIC 5K AT FOSTERFIELDS
If you prefer cross country racing, then Tuesday night is your choice. The Frantic Fun Run is put on by the Morris County Parks and although the name implies a fun run, it is actually a competitive race with five year age divisions. It takes place at Fosterfields Living Historical Farm reached on Kahdena Road in Morris Township. Registration begins at 5:00 p.m. with the start is at 7:00 p.m.
PERFECT CONDITIONS FOR THE PRESIDENT’S CUP NIGHT RACE
On a perfect night to run fast, the top of the field didn’t quite have it. That’s according to the man who would know. Jeff Perrella of Westfield, who won the President’s Cup Night Race 5K in Millburn on Monday night, said as much after the race.
Temperatures were cool by June standards, and certainly in comparison to other years, but they just weren’t on, according to Perrella who finished in a less than astounding 15:02. In 2011 Perrella won the race in 14:50. Elena Rozhko of Morristown also won in 2011 and again on Monday night. Her time of 17:23 was only a tick off from 2011, but it was slower by two seconds.
Second place on the men’s side went to Youssef Rochdi of Morris Plains in a disappointing 15:12. Rochdi has a goal of 14:37 for 5K this year. He went out fast, perhaps hoping to meet that goal, but was reeled in by the others after two miles.
The race was not a championship for the first time in several years and that may have accounted for the drop from 1,344 finishers in 2011 to 1,117 this year.