Sunday, May 3, 2015

Scheid wins Clinton in near record breaking time

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 3, 2015


When Justin Scheid of Sparta won the Clinton Country Run 15K last Saturday, April 25th, he may not have realized that he was just 14 seconds away from tying the course record.  His time was 48:38 and you’d have to go back to 2010 to find Mike Dixon of Fanwood who finished the race that year in 48:24.   In all the other years the winning time was over 50 minutes and sometimes over 51. 

On the women’s side, Corinne Fitzgerald of New York finished first in 57:09, ahead of Cheyenne Ogletree of Port Reading who finished in 57:51.

The team division races seem to be a two team contest with the other clubs running for the runner-up spots in the open races and younger masters races.  The Adidas Garden State Track club took first and second place in both the men and women’s open division.  The Morristown based Garmin team was third on both sides.  They had the top spot in both the M40 and M50 divisions and the W50 division, but the Adidas Garden State team won the W40 division with Garmin in second.

Nora Cary of Morristown who has just aged up into the W60 division topped the Age Graded scoring with an 86.20% with her time of 1:08:47.


Eva Fisher of Boonton always runs in the Woods and Lakes, the quirky races in Mountain Lakes that forbids runners who are under age 30.  Always the last Saturday in April, loyalists eschew the trendier races to run in their beloved race that runs over trails and mud and sand and logs.  Normally Fisher would run in the 10K but last Saturday she knew she had another race on Sunday so chose the shorter 5K.

She wanted to run with Herman, her Golden Retriever but race organizers nixed that as a safety issue.  So she ran alone hoping to keep her pace down to save herself for the next day. 

“I got to mile two and someone shouted out that I was ‘first woman’.  I said Huh?”  

It was said in disbelief because Fisher turned 55 last August.  She was indeed in the lead and she finished there in 27:30.

Up at the crack of dawn the next day, still flush from the memory of her unexpected win Fisher headed to the Jersey shore for the Jersey Shore Marathon.  A stroke of luck had won her a free entry to the race last winter – a race she would not have otherwise entered.  When her ticket was drawn at the USATF awards banquet she concluded that “it was written in the stars”.

Her training partner became Ed Neighbour of Sparta, a fellow member of the Morris County Striders.  Not that it was easy for the duo, nor for any runners in the northeast with snow and cold hampering serious training.  But train they did, managing to find running routes in Mountain Lakes and once the snow was gone, on the Columbia Trail in Long Valley.  They entered a half marathon in Monticello New York and got in their sole twenty miler on the Columbia Trail.

Fisher’s expectations would be to finish the marathon in good shape.  She never dreamed she would win her W55 division.

“I was shocked,” said Fisher about her win.  “It pays to be 55-plus, versus 54,” she quipped.

Still she finished six minutes ahead of the next woman in the division.  But the point is well taken.  Fisher would have been eighth in the W50 division that was won by her car pool pal and friend Wendy Locke of Boonton.  Locke finished the race in 3:27:26, a good ten minutes ahead of the next woman in the division.

Other local runners had a good day.  Anthony Bellitti of Basking Ridge finished in fourth place overall and first in the M20 division in 2:36:24.  Sean Oraho of Cedar Knolls was fifth overall and first in the M25 division in 2:49:18, and Michael Hodgetts of Long Valley won his M45 division in 3:09:45.


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