Sunday, November 15, 2015

Masters women dominated at Giralda Farms 10K Championship

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, November 15, 2015


Twenty-three year old Betty Eikelberg of Leonia won the Giralda Farms 10K in Madison last Sunday in 37:48, but the next five women were masters runners, as befitting a masters women’s championship.  Elena Rozhko, 42, of Morristown placed second in 38:38 leading in her Garmin women’s team to first place in the W40 division.  Karen Perlman, 47, of Neshanic was next in 39:18 leading her Raritan Valley Road Runner team to second place in the division. 

Perlman was a standout at Bernards in the mid 80’s when she was known as Karen Ahearn. 
In 1985 Ahearn set the New Jersey girls 2.5 mile Van Courtland Park course record at 14:12.8.   In 2008 Lanie Thompson of Voorhees hit the same time and the record has stood until this year when Brianna Gess of Haddonfield hit 14:10.04 on the course.

Youssef Rochdi of Rockaway broke from the start and was never challenged for the overall title.  Running alone on the hill infested course he finished in 31:59.  Rochdi has been training in Colorado for the past several months, overcoming an injury while out west.  Nick Desantis of Wanaque was second in 33:16 and Jeremy Scheid, formerly of Sparta and now living in Hoboken was third in 33:34

Although Misa Tamura of Ridgewood, who turned 50 this year was fourth in 39:40, her North Jersey Masters team placed only seventh in the W50 team division.  The Garmin women took first with Susan Kinsella of Millington and Mary Christian of Flanders leading the team in.

Top local women included Nora Cary, 60, of Morristown who topped the masters women’s age grading file with her 44:01 that hit 88.33%.   Susan Stirrat of Rockaway placed second to Cary in the W60 division.  Dede Paul of Morristown also placed second, in her W55 division.


The Giralda Farm 10K may have been a masters women’s championship but it had an effect on the men in the New Balance Grand Prix.  Mathew Slocum, 34, of Montclair gained 693 points by placing fourth in the race.  That bumped him into first in the series.  Gary Leaman, 56, of Hardwick placed eighth overall in an age grading chart topping time of 37:20.  He earned 684 points and moved up to second in the grand prix series.

Other shuffles ensued so that Atilla Sabahoglu of Somerset is now in 16th place, Gary Rosenberg of Morristown is in 18th, John Sabatino of Morris Plains is in 21st place and Charlie Slaughter of Parsippany is now 20th.

Sabahoglu and Rosenberg would both move to the head of the class if they have good performances at the Great Swamp Devil 15K that goes off at noon today.  But there is another sleeper in the mix.  Theodore Doyle, 26, of Maplewood also needs today’s 15K.  He too would move up with the other three.

Even further down in the grand prix, in 45th place, is a worthy opponent who could pull off a real upset.  He needs to do the Swamp Devil today and the Ashenfelter 8km later this month.  Jonathan Frieder, 45, of Hartsdale New York, has the potential of go ahead of Rosenberg if he runs in both those races.  When racing head to head, as they did in the President’s Cup 5K, the Ridgewood Run 10K and the Liberty Waterfront Half, Frieder has finished ahead of Rosenberg. 

Last week I wrote that Roberta Groner of Randolph was sure to be the winner in the women’s division of the grand prix series.  I also said that Mary Christian, 52, of Flanders was untouchable in second place.

I now have to eat my words.  Groner is still number one, but Misa Tamura, 50, of Ridgewood had a big payoff in running in the Giralda Farms race.  She replaced a non championship score of 500 points with the championship and is now two points ahead of Christian; 5636 to 5634.   Christian could fight back by running well today in the Great Swamp Devil and adding just three points would put her ahead of Tamura.

It does get interesting this time of year.


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