Sunday, August 13, 2017

Midland Avenue Mile next Sunday


The introduction of the Midland Avenue Mile race in 2016 was not exactly

auspicious.  In fact, it was pretty dreary, as in misty, moisty rain dreary.  Not that

running a mile in the rain on a Sunday evening in summer is all bad. Consider the

cooling off factor.  On the other hand, run in the rain, but celebrate in the sun can't

always be achieved.

In 2016 the Midland Avenue Mile in Montclair was the first year being the USATF

New Jersey state mile championship.  This year, the race was again selected for

hosting the mile championship for all divisions.  It will take place next Sunday,

August 20th.

Of course you can't put an entire field of runners on the line for a mile race.  it will

be much too crowded.   The schedule calls for several heats, starting with a family

division at 5:00 p.m. before the first masters heat at 5:30 p.m.  Men 60 and up will

be first, followed by Women 60 and up.  Then Men 50 to 59, on down to the open

categories.  Looking at the Practice Hard website, it looks like the open division will

be combined men and women and using seed times to create three different heats.

In 2016 Atilla Sabahoglu of Manville was the fastest man with a time of 4:39.32.    

the fastest woman was Roberta Groner of Randolph in 5:05.04.  Despite road

runners apprehension at racing a mile, the race had a good masters turnout in 2016.

Team captains are hoping to coax even more of their team members to turn out.

Those who raced in 2016 found out that running a mile fast did not hurt them and

was actually fun.  They should be back.

The rain in 2016 put a damper on the really fun part of a mile race; the post race

beer and food.  It will be back this year and hopefully not the rain.

Race registration and packet pick-up can be done on Friday and Saturday at Fleet

Feet Sports in Montclair, and on Sunday prior to the race.


The Team Bloke 5K in Mendham last week drew nearly two hundred runners who

likely knew or knew of Doug Clark, the international level triathlete who lost his

battle with a brain tumor last year.  The race raises funds that are used to support

familes that are dealing with cancer.

The race was won by Lucas Peterson of Waterford MI in 16:34, followed closely

by Morristown's Karl O'Reilly in 16:36.  Karen Auteri of Belvidere was the women's

winner in 18:55.


Sunday, August 6, 2017

Dover Renaissance 5K turns twenty-five this month

Published by the Daily Record
of Morris County, New Jersey
Sunday, August 6, 2017


It was in 1992 when brothers David and Daniel Cruz of Dover ran the first Dover Renaissance 5K with the respective times of 15:59 and 16:05.

Much has happened since then in this historical town that sits on part of the Rockaway River.   As the Dover Renaissance 5K has its Silver Anniversary Run, it is somewhat bittersweet, as one of the founding members of Dover Renaissance, Mrs. Ellen Forbes, passed away earlier this year.

It was Ellen Forbes,  along with three of her neighbors, that founded Dover Renaissance in 1985 when Downtown Dover was not in a good place, with empty storefronts and a sad look.  One of her goals was to help preserve and restore the historic downtown, as well as to beautify the old homes of Dover.

When the runners take off on Saturday, August 12th, they will run down a vibrant Blackwell St., much improved and beautified since that first race.   They will start by the Story Poles and landscaped Triangle Park, both Dover Renaissance  projects.  They will pass the Verdin Town Street Clock, one of Ellen Forbes's proudest achievements.

The 5K race achieved one of Ellen Forbes' goals - to bring people to Dover to experience the vibe a historic town can emit.  The initial’s E F are proudly displayed on the back of this year’s running shirt as a tribute to her legacy.

In 25 years a  lot does happen.  Forbes is gone now, and when was the last time the talented Cruz brothers raced in the Dover race?  A very long time since these young men were part of the the New Jersey running scene.  In 2016 the race was won in 17:43 by David Lerman of Hopatcong.  The first woman was Gradie Carrol of Morris Plains in 21:29.  No, not earth shaking times, but a great testament to the local flavor ot the race.  Less than a hundred runners competed, but most were loyalists who had run in many of those 25 races, and had seen the transformation of Dover thanks to Ellen Forbes.

It appears that the race has finally found a permanent date, after moving to May in 2016, for a one-time tribute to Armed Forces Day.


Jaren Cooper of Mountain Lakes lead a pack of teen runners to finish first at the Morris County Striders Cross Country final 5K this past Tuesday.  Cooper finished in 16:21
Finishing in 11th place was Reno Stirrat of Rockaway who finished in 19:40 followed closely by his running buddy Robert Skorupski also of Rockaway, who finished in 19:41.

 Sarah Dalfol of Sparta won the women's race in 22:12.


Sunday, July 30, 2017

Sabatino takes a spill in biggest triathlon in the state

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, July 30, 2017


“I was hoping to defend my title,” said John “Chachi” Sabatino, of Morris Plains.  Sabatino had won the M50 age division in the New Jersey Triathlon Championship in 2016, finishing with a time of 2:04:53 for the Olympic distance triathlon

On Saturday, instead of another title Sabatino was in the road bed trying to shake off a sudden spill. 

A lifeguard in his youth Sabatino counts on a good swim leg before hopping on the bike.  He came out of the water in fourth place in his heat.  Things were looking good.

When a kid on a bike decided to dash across the road in front of him he clearly underestimated the speed of the racers.  Sabatino estimates he was traveling at 22 miles per hour.  There was no way he was going to miss the kid.  Over the handlebars he went.  Miraculously he did not hit his head but there was plenty of unseen damage and plenty of damage to the bike.

In a Facebook post Sabatino states that, “Of course I hopped back on my bike to finish.”

With a front derailleur bent and broken and the chain severally bent Sabatino was able to force it to work, but with scraping sounds as the front derailleur switched on its own from the big to small ring.

Once his bike was racked Sabatino was off on the run portion of the race, only to realize that it wasn’t just the bike that was damaged.  Instead of the seven minute per mile pace he expected, he was running at 8:20 pace.   He finished the race in 2:42:29 – 38 minutes off his 2016 time.

“After the race, I went to medical and was cleared to go,” he wrote in his post.  Later he went to the hospital in Morristown where he was diagnosed with a cracked rib and sporting a sizable area of road rash on his shoulder.  Just go home and rest.

That didn’t happen.  Later that night Sabatino’s wife Sara, found him passed out on the bathroom floor.  She called for an ambulance and Sabatino spent the next three days in the hospital.  Not one rib, but four ribs were cracked.  He had what was rated as a Grade 1 liver bruise as well as contusions on the lung.  He was cleared to go home Wednesday when his liver bloodwork came back clear.

He’s on the mend now but with those cracked ribs he isn’t sneezing or laughing.  The doctors say it will take six to eight weeks to recover. 

That will put him into mid-September before he is able to train or compete.  This hasn’t been his year.  A pulled hamstring in March set him back and now it’s a question of whether he will be able to gather the points he would need to make it into the top three in his age division in the New Jersey grand prix, a spot where he usually finishes.  At mid-season Sabatino is missing four races and two of those are in the Category Three division.  Yes, it could have been worse but hard not to wish that kid had stayed home last Saturday.

Other local runners who also do triathlons did well in the race.  Liam Gallagher of Morristown finished fourth in the Elite Men division and second in the New Jersey Elite Men. 

  Rich Burke of Morristown was the second M50 New Jersey finisher. Taryn Ferrara of Morristown was first in the W25 division and  Olivia Christmann of Mendham won the W20 division.

Susan Olesky of Mendham was first in the W60 New Jersey division with Susan Jankowitz of Sparta in second place.

Cande Olsen of Chatham won the W65 division with Mary Hager of Randolph second. Over a thousand athletes competed in the race, the largest in the state.


Doug Clarke of Mendham, an outstanding runner and triathlete lost his battle with brain cancer but the race in his honor goes on to raise funds to help those afflicted with this deadly form of cancer.

Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Remembering back in the day

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, July 21, 2017


My decision to add the DVR element to my cable service was one of the best I’ve ever made.  I can record a televised marathon and watch it the next day, or I can delay watching the coverage by an hour or more, and then catch up by fast forwarding through the commercials.

During the summer season with the Diamond League  track and field series in Europe where the elite athletes compete I am in heaven, watching at my leisure, backing up to do my own “instant replay”.  I came across a column I wrote more than twenty years ago and now, watching female athletes compete, it hit me again, what a change has occurred in my lifetime.

Wilma Rudolph, the Olympic triple gold medalist had died, and I wrote of the difference between Rudolph’s experience and my own.  I grew up in Washington state on an island in Puget Sound that was, and still is, isolated yet near the bustling cities of Seattle and Tacoma.  We lived on a small berry farm surrounded by giant Douglas firs – a perfect environment for the tomboy that I was.

When I wasn’t doing chores, I was free to run and explore and play.  My dad was an amateur athlete – a good boxer, diver and gymnast.  My sister and I were willing students and he taught us how to box and do basic gymnastics.  At school, I looked forward to playground where tag was a staple game and where we sometimes held impromptu races.

In a game of tag I could never be caught.  In a race, no girl could beat me and there were two boys who could only sometimes outrun me.  On field days, I would win all my events.  It was my favorite day of the school year.  I was in heaven.  Then I moved up to high school and everything changed.  Girls were no longer encouraged to participate in sports.  Indeed, I learned that running and jumping would somehow injure me.

My grade school running rivals became stars of the football and basketball teams where their leg speed was put to good use.  Me, well, eventually I learned how to twirl a baton and became a majorette.

Oh, we girls could pay volleyball, tennis, baseball and basketball in our physical education classes and intramural sports.  That was because they weren’t considered too vigorous and didn’t involve serious running.

Girls’ basketball allowed only three steps with the ball.  No running and dribbling down the court.  You must pass almost as soon as you receive the ball.  I would look with envy as the boys played their basketball and puzzle with resentment at the restrictions placed on me because of my gender.

On my own time, when no one was looking, I did run.  I ran on the logging trails near my home with my horse.  There I was safe from prying eyes that might find me foolish or unfeminine.

Then when I probably first became aware of the Olympics, I heard and read of this Wilma Rudolph – an American girl who was competing with other women in track running events.  It blew my mind.  How did it happen?  Who let her and the others run?

Obviously, they had been encouraged to do so by adults who were coaching and training them.  But why had my school and all the others that I knew, never allowed girls to run or compete in serious sports?

While Rudolph was blazing down the track, except for those occasional runs with my horse, I long abandoned my tomboy ways.  If I was not quite a demur young miss, I was certainly not an athlete.  That didn’t come for twenty more years.  My first competition was in 1982 when I was now a master.

Which brings me back to those Diamond League meets.  Friday night, New Jersey’s Ajee Wilson set an American record in the 800 meters, while finishing in third place in 1:55.61, Caster Semenya was first in 1:55.27, with Francine Niyonsaba second in 1:55.47.  What a thrilling race to watch as the three women battled three across down the home stretch.

We can look forward for more meets this summer and this tomboy can enjoy and remember back in the day when girls weren’t allowed to run.


Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Verizon Corporate Classic went off without rain or lightning

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, July 16, 2017


Would they have to cancel the Verizon Corporate Classic 5K again in 2017?  Heat was building on Thursday morning with dreadful thunder and lightning storms predicted.  But in Morristown the heat began to drop and a mild rain was all that fell as race time at 7:30 p.m. approached.

Not that is wasn’t uncomfortable.  The humidity was heavy as the nearly three thousand runners began the race down Maple Avenue and then down Route 202, Mt. Kemble Avenue.  Out in front a lead pack formed with close to ten runners a half mile into the race.  Down they sped to the turnaround just north of Harter Road, and back up on the same road that they had gone down. 

The lead pack had spread out after mile two with only a few left in the fight.  In the end Kyle Price of North Brunswick managed to make it to the finish line first, with Joe Mummert of Mahwah running for Merrill Lynch next and Liam Boylan-Pett of Clinton in third.  Their chip times were 16:25, 16:31 and 16:44 respectively.

Not far behind those lead men was Ashley Higgonson of Morristown.  She finished in seventh place overall in17:12.   Higgonson, running for Riker Danzig then and now won the 2014 race in the nearly identical time of 17:10.

The second place woman was Diana D’Achille of Denville, running for Verizon who finished in 18:33. D’Achille won the 2015 race in 18:17. Karen Auteri of Belvidere, running for Quintilesims finished third in 18:38.  Auteri finished second woman overall in 2014.

While the speedier runners were challenging themselves in the humidity on the deceptive course that drops down on the way out on Route 202 with the subsequent climb back to the finish on Maple Avenue with a short serious climb on Market Street, other participants were happily walking the length of the race.

  When Price was finishing five hundred participants had not yet hit the one mile marker.  One hundred sixty-two participants finished in over an hour - averaging each mile in slower than 19 minute per mile pace.

This is not to be scoffed at as the race invites people to come out and work toward fitness and health and if that means a 20 minute pace so be it.  The participants were out there and who knows, an elite runner may be hiding undiscovered in their ranks needing just this one event to inspire them to future fitness.  It happens.


Looking for another race this summer?  Look no further. 

 The Morris County Striders summer series 5K cross country race is this Tuesday, July 18th at Johnson Park
 in Boonton.  Each race is part of a series that scores the best three out of the four races in the series.  
Robert Skorupski, 44, of Rockaway is in contention on the men’s side with two teenagers, Tommy Carney, 
14, of Denville who finished ahead of Skorupski in the first race, as did Noah Schagelin, 16, of Rockaway.  
Skorupski came back in the second race to finish in second place to Carrington Retzios, 17, of Budd Lake
 who finished in 17:30.  While the two teens finished in third and fourth.
On the other side of the ledger, Kayla Schramm, 12, of Goshen NY won the first race in age division 
course record time of 19:35.  Astonishingly right behind her was Allison Lounsbury, 13,
 of Franklin Lakes in 19:44.  Christine Carny, 17, of Denville was third in 22:05.
Schramm returned in the second race to win in a slower paced 21:00.  Carney returned for the second 
race making those two the leaders in the series on the female side.   Any runner who has completed
 just one race can hop back into the series by competing at this Tuesdays race and the next one on
 August 1st.

Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Verizon Corporate Classic Thursday changes course

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, July 9, 2017


How does that old song go?  “There’s gonna be some changes made today.”

Well, maybe not today, but on Thursday there will be changes to the Verizon Classic 5K that could have some people unprepared.  Yes, last year the staging area was changed from the Headquarters Plaza to Morristown High School, and then, yes, a really nasty storm changed everything.  No race at all.  A make-up run was held a couple of weeks later.  

Well, here it is 2017 and the Verizon Classic is sporting a new venue and a new course.  Nothing like the course of 2016 and nothing like 2015.

Nope, runners will leave from the Verizon Building at 37 Maple Avenue and head down Mt. Kemble Avenue.  Yes, Route 202.  Down and back as in a true Out-and-Back course.  The turnaround will be just before Harter Road.

An out-and-back course with 400 people is pretty easily managed.  An out-and-back with 4,000 runners, which is possible on a good night for racing is not so easy.  In 2015 when the race was last conducted as a race, the winning time was 16:22.  When he was finishing the 3,491st runner was passing mile marker One.  Get the picture?

The course marshals will be experienced runners from two running clubs whose job will be to keep those slower runners on their own side of the road, while making sure that the returning runners coming back to the finish have their side of the road free from – well – slow moving bodies.

The staging has all been figured out with traffic posts and tape delineating the course right down the middle of Route 202.  Those runners-turned-course marshals will be making sure that the returning runners have their space.

With a field that could be as large as 4,000 runners and walkers, the timing has to change.  The runners chip time will be their actual time when scoring the event.  This means that each runner is timed only when he or she crosses the computer timing mat at the official start point of the race, and when they have crossed the finish line.

This race does not score age divisions as the focus is on the many corporate teams that compete.  However, runners with no affiliation are also free to register and run, although there are no age division awards.

The race has a 7:30 p.m. start time. For more information check out

Continuing to use old metaphors:  what we have here is a horse of a different color.  As in the Ellie’s 5K at Horseshoe Lake park in Succasunna.  The course has to be the most challenging that anyone has ever run, and yet it has no hills.

The park has a perimeter path of less than two full miles, so to run a 5K the race organizers have been creative to find a full 3.1-mile course.   It is all for a good cause.  The race benefits the Ellie Reynolds ALS Foundation.

At the Race for Recovery 5K at Central Park on the July 4th, 44-year-old Elena Rozhko of Morristown almost won the race outright.  She finished in 18:52 for third overall.  Youngster Patrick Mullen, 16, of Morristown won the race in 17:43, with Sean Thoulitus, 18, of Gillette second in 17:55.   An enthusiastic group of supporters of the Market Street Mission boosted the number of finishers to 240, many of them walking the 3.1-mile cross-country course.


Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.

Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Thirty-six teams at Fitzgerald's Lager Run

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, July 2, 2017


Whew!   Championships all done for the spring season.  The Fitzgerald’s Lager Run 5K this past Sunday drew a full field of young men to compete for the open men’s championship, along with a full field of others who are enthusiastic fans of the race that takes place in Glen Ridge each year.  There will not be another championship until August with the Midland Mile and the first of the USATF cross country races.

Joshua Izewski of Doylestown, PA won the race in an impressive 14:27, with Eric Chirchir of Irvington second in 14:40, and Aaron Leskow of Morristown third in 15:05.

Leskow was on the winning Garden State Track Club C team.  The club put five teams in the top five spots with three other teams also in the mix.  The abilities of the top tier men on the teams is so well balanced that it is not always the A team that places first.  At the race on Sunday the C team was first, the B team second and the A team third.

Justin Scheid of Succasunna placed fifth overall in 15:17 to lead in his Shore Athletic Club team to eighth place.

Thirty-six teams competed, but that number is misleading, as many of the teams were made up of masters men.  As there was no masters team competition the older men were free to run in the open division, and they did.

Roberta Groner of Randolph won the women’s race in a personal best time of 16:24. Nora Cary, 62, of Morristown was the top masters woman with her 21:34 hitting 88.03%.  Brian Crowley, 52, of Hillsborough was the top masters man going up to 90.88% with his 16:28 finishing time.  Gary Leaman, 58, of Hardwick was next with his 17:38 at 89.00% PLP.

If you like to race on the Fourth of July but hate the travel to Fourth of July races like the Cranford Firecracker we now have a fun race in Morris County.
The Race for Recovery 5K is being held on the high school cross country course in Central Park in Morris Plains.  The race is a USATF cross country grand prix race.  Except for the Morris Country Striders 5 K race series in Boonton there has not been any other local cross-country races in the series that is close to home. 

The course is a mix of hills as well as flat sections on well groomed trails.  It is not only used by the local high schools but also by the younger set.  The youth Lakeland League uses the course and it was the New Jersey Junior Olympic site in 2015 and 2016.  Roadies should be able to handle it

The race is being put on by the Market Street Mission in Morristown that helps people who are struggling with addiction.   Stay for a picnic for the participants with hot dogs and hamburgers included on the menu.  It is suggested that you bring a lawn chair or a blanket.  Registration opens at 7:30 a.m. with the race start at 9:00 a.m.  The pre-entry deadline has passed. The day of race entry fee is $35.00. 

While a morning race on the Fourth of July is great, an evening race on the Fourth is not.  The Morris County Striders moved their 5K race for this one week to Thursday, July 6th.  Registration begins at 6:00 p.m. with the race start at 7:00 p.m.

Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, June 25, 2017

President's Cup Night Race almost a washout

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, June 26, 2017


And then there are those days.   Days, or in this case, nights, when things don’t go exactly as planned.  The President’s Cup Night Race 5K in Millburn didn’t plan for lightning, thunder, and downpours for most of the day leading up to the race at 8:00 pm this past Monday night.

Hmm,  let’s see, “go out in the pouring rain and deal with likely rain-induced-travel-nightmares to go to run in the rain, or stay home nice and dry and unfrazzled”.  About three to four hundred  runners, who were either pre-registered for the race or who had planned to post enter decided to choose the later and stayed home.

The number of finishers was the lowest in recent memory.  The highest number of finishers was just seven years ago in 2010 when Justin Scheid, then of Sparta and now of Succasunna won the race in 14:50, with 1,496 runners finishing behind him.  There has been an almost steady decline in number of runners since then, with last year at 973 finishers the lowest until Monday night at 649 finishers.

It wasn’t a championship race and that may also have contributed to the lower numbers and the thinner New Jersey elite field.  At less than a mile into the race only a small number of men were in the lead pack.  Past the mile and that small pack had already broken apart with the original leaders now strung out, and strung out they stayed for the rest of the race.

Joshua Izewski of Doylestown PA won the race in 15:16, with Rob Nihen of Glen Rock, second in 15:31 and Stephen Rathbun of Seattle, WA third in 15:59.

The women’s race was actually much closer with Corey Weiss of Short Hills finishing first in 18:12 with Aimee Chegwidden of Hamburg second in 18:26. Alyssa Vassallo of Florham Park was third with Lauren Jackson of Augusta just three seconds back in 18:38.

The Coed teams made for interesting reading after the race with some local clubs doing better with coed teams than in straight USATF competition. 

The New Jersey Racing Project club with several Morris County residents won the open division and the Morris County Striders were fifth, and the Rose City Runners took sixth place.

The North Jersey Masters with Do Run Runner Nora Cary of Morristown scoring with the highest PLP of 84.1%, topped the masters coed division based on age grading.  The Morris County Striders placed fourth.

The Garmin masters team won both the open division and also the masters division.  Not all clubs participated in what was an exhibition event with no points going into the team and club grand Prix.

The New Jersey Racing Project won the women’s open division and the Rose City Runners were third with the Morris County Striders fourth.  Several clubs had incomplete teams indicating that weather or traffic kept runners away who had planned to compete.


It was all about the young at the Morris County Striders cross country 5K on Tuesday night at Johanson Fields in Boonton.  Sixteen-year-old Karos Sadeghi-Nejod of Essex Fells won the race in 17:41, with Tommy Carney, 16 of Denville second in 18:07 and Andrew Goldsmith 16 of Rockaway third in 18:12.

Young girls were the winners on the other side.  Kayla Schramm, 12, of Goshen NY placed first in 19:35, with Allison Lounsbury not far back in 19:44.  Christine Carney, 17 of Denville placed third in 22:05.

The Fitzgerald Lager Run 5K is this evening in Glen Ridge as noted in last week’s column.  It is the open mens championship and should draw some fast young men.

Everyone may feel “run-out” but there is good reason to go to Bloomfield this Thursday night for the Tom Fleming Sunset Classic 5 mile.  Running legend Bill Rodgers, who was a very close friend of Fleming who died earlier this year, will be there signing autographs for fans.  The race starts at 7:30 pm.


Race Results can often be found at or at
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Rozhko wins masters championship

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, June 18, 2017


The race was billed as a masters women’s championship and the first woman across the line was indeed a master.  Forty-four-year-old Elena Rozhko of Morristown finished the New Milford 5K Saturday morning in 18:01.  She was one of six over age forty women in the top ten and her time put her in 9th place overall.

Out of all masters women the finest performance was put in by Morristown’s Nora Cary who at age 62 bested all women in the age graded Performance Level Percentage by scoring 91.64% for her 20:43 finishing time.

Rob Albano, 26, of Mahwah won the race in 15:42, but the best man’s performance might have been fifty-eight-year-old Gary Leaman of Hardwick who finished sixth overall in 17:36.  That time put his performance at the top of the age graded Performance Level Percentage list at 89.17%.  Next was Reno Stirrat, 63 of Rockaway whose 18:45 finishing time age graded at 87.24%.

Although the race was held in Bergen County the top two masters W40 teams were from out of the county.  The Morris based Garmin Runners were first in the division with the Shore Athletic Club second.  Twenty W40 teams finished the race.
Cary who now competes for the North Jersey Masters club was second on the clubs winning W50 team, and the first scoring member of the W60 team that won the W60 division.  Mary Ann Murphy of Livingston led in the North Jersey Masters W70 team to claim first in that division.  In all the North Jersey Masters club with their runners from the Do Run Runners swept all but the W40 and W80 division.   The Morris County Striders took second in W70 and their B team was third.  They also won the W80 division.


Runners can have their fill of races in the next week.  As you read about here last Sunday, tomorrow the President’s Cup Night Race 5K is taking place in Millburn at 8:00 p.m. 

On Tuesday evening the first of the Morris County Striders 5K cross country race will take place at Johanson Memorial Fields in Boonton.  This is a no-frills, low cost series of four races that take place every other week on Tuesday evening.  The exception is Tuesday, July 4th.   Instead, the race will be held that week on Thursday, July 6th.

Runners who run in the President’s Cup Night Race with its hill that is run twice on the double loop course, will appreciate the Striders cross country course.   There isn’t a hill in sight – the location was once a small airport.  At one time the race was run all on grass but a cinder path now lines most of the course with footing better assured.   

Although this is a no t-shirt race, recognition is given in five year age divisions and there is always a plethora of trophies to choose from for all age division winners, thanks to new face plates on donated trophies.  Other items are also offered for selection.

Next Sunday is the Fitzgerald Lager Run 5K in Glen Ridge.  The race is the Open Men’s Championship.  Like the President’s Cup race, cold beer is on tap for adults after they finish, along with an assortment of foods.  The course is considered fast with a net downhill and the finish is on the track at Hurrell Field.   All pre and post-race activity takes place in the track infield.

Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, June 11, 2017

President's Cup Night Race with a twist

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, June 11, 2017

It has often been a 5K championship race for open women and more often open men, but this year the President’s Cup Night Race, taking place in Millburn next Monday night, June 18th. has a real twist.  USATF teams will compete in a special coed division.   Most corporate coed teams count the top three on a huge team with the top three fastest runners, usually two men and one woman. 

These USATF NJ teams will score men and women equally.  They can declare four men, and four women.  These teams will count the top two men, and top two females combined times to determine the winners. 

The masters teams will be made up of the same configuration, four and four, but here’s where it will get fun.  The top two men and top two females will be selected by using the Performance Level Percentages age grading percentages of the runners, not their actual times.   The team captains are studying their members to see who would score the best using their PLP’s, not their times. 

Those teams will have a combination of ages with the club’s older runners as valuable as their younger counterparts.   For instance, Rockaway’s Reno Stirrat, 63, will certainly be on the Shore AC’s A team.  His wife Susan, 62, could be on the team as well. 

 Now that the Do Run Runners are running with the North Jersey Masters, who will bet against that club with Misa Tamura, 51 and Nora Cary, 62, on the A team.  The Garmin team should have Mary Christian of Flanders and Susan Kinsella of Millington, both in their fifties declared on the A team, along with Elena Rozhko, 44, of Morristown.   Terry Davidson, 45, of Randolph, and Gary Rosenberg, 46, of Morristown will be on the Garmin A team.

Other local clubs, like the Morris County Striders will use Bruce Langenkamp. 67, of Wharton on the team.  Beau and Gretchen Atwater of Bernardsville will be high scorers on the New Jersey Racing Project team.

It won’t end with the coed scoring.  The computer will also calculate the top three women and the top three men on the teams for a separate team division.   All this fun will give the President’s Cup Night Race a 700 point value for the New Balance grand prix, but the team scores will not be counted in the overall and team division grand prix scoring.

The whole weekend is packed with opportunities to compete.  Masters women will be heading to New Milford for the 5K state championship next Saturday, June 17.  This is the second year as a championship where in 2016 Roberta Groner of Randolph placed in the top ten with her 16:35 and Charlie Murphy of Philadelphia the overall winner in 15:32.

A lot can change in one year.  Last year Groner was racking up points for a perfect score in the New Jersey New Balance grand prix and this year she is affiliated with a New York club so no longer a member in New Jersey.

Last year the race was a championship for both masters men and masters women and this year the masters men will be having their championship at the Giralda Farms 5K in November.  Will it make a difference in the number of runners?  Last year 695 runners finished the race with 374 of them male.

The weekend is crammed with other events, including the New Jersey USATF Track & Field Championship being held at the Peddie School in Hightstown.  The distance events, 5,000 meters and 10,000 meters will be held on Friday, June 16 and the shorter track distances on Saturday, June 17. 

The fields are really thin for these distance events.  In an effort to make them more attractive to roadies both have a 500 point value in the New Balance grand prix.  In reality though, only the winner can profit from this.  Imagine second place’s score in a ten person field.

Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.

Contact Madeline Bost at

Monday, June 5, 2017

Crowley and Dyson set age division records at Ridgewood

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, June 4, 2017


Two masters runner lowered the age division record at last Monday’s Ridgewood Run 10K.   Not a surprise at all that Brian Crowley took down the M50 record of 34:00.7 set by Peter McArdle years ago.   Crowley finished in 33:52.92 in fifth place overall and topped the age grading chart at 90.19%.  

Not to be outdone, Imme Dyson of Princeton who has aged up into the W80 division, finished the race in 1:05:20 to establish a record in that division.

Jonathan Frieder, 46 of Rye Brook NY finished in sixth place overall off the record of 33:15 for the M45 division.  His time of 33:59 put him in fifth place overall in the age grading at 85.49%.   The top masters in age grading was of course Crowley, followed by Beau Atwater, 59, of Bernardsville who finished in 36:42 and at 88.53%.  Reno Stirrat, 63, of Rockaway finished in 38:40 and at 87.20%.   Gary Leaman, 58, of Hardwick was fourth in age grading at 86.51% for his time of 37:13.  Morris County has a hefty helping of top masters men in the state.

Susanne LaBurt, 54, of Greenwood Lake NY topped the masters women’s age grading division with her 40:03 at 89.81%.

At age 39 and not quite a masters, Roberta Groner of Randolph placed second overall in 34:43.  The first local man was Karl O’Reilly of Morristown who placed third overall in 33:41.

There were plenty of masters teams, but the only local club that was able to put teams in the top three in their division was the Garmin club.  They took first in the M40 and M50, while the Garmin women were third in the W40 and first in W50.

Aaron Leskow, 25, of Morristown won the 5K in 14:45.  Elena Rozhko, 44, also of Morristown was the top masters woman in the 5K and fourth overall in 18:41.  Rozhko came back to run in the masters elite mile which she won in 5:33.


Yes, the Roxbury Community Benefit 5K is always on the first Monday in May, but sometimes always isn’t always.  The race, organized by the Morris County Striders and ably directed by Jim Schulz of Succasunna made a change this year.  A scheduling conflict with another local event caused the club to move to the second Monday of the month.

In 2012  the race course was changed from an out-and-back to a loop course and when that happens it opens up opportunity to set a course and age division record.  In 2016 four records were set.   In the M13/14 division Jeremy Hajil of Succasunna took his division down to 19:12.  The other three were masters athletes.  Bill Trengove of Wharton lowered the M60 to 20:53, while Bruce Langenkamp, also of Wharton set the M65 at 21:42.  Helen Ray of Randolph set a new record in the W75 of 43:10.

The overall records are pretty stiff.  Youseff Rochdi of Rockaway finished in 15:19 in 2014 to set the men’s record.  In 2015 Roberta Groner of Randolph finished the race in 17:11 for the women’s record.

All of the records are listed on the event home page at the course link.  Scroll down past the course map to see them.

Pre-Registration is strongly advised as registering on race day carries a big penalty jump.  The fee will rise from $20.00 for Roxbury residents and members of USATF New Jersey, and $23.00 for all others to $30.00 for all.  Families of four that pre-register will pay only $55.00 while on race day they will pay $70.00.

Registration will begin at 5:00 p.m. at the Eisenhower Middle School on Eyland Avenue.  Parking is at the Roxbury High School lot off Hillside Avenue, a short walk from the middle school.

The race is a 500 point New Balance grand prix event, but what really draws the runners is the emphasis on families and fun.  Family teams are encouraged and post race is like a party with pizza, ice cream, yogurt and nutrition bars.


Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Ridgewood Run tomorrow. 10K is the masters championship.

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 28, 2017


How can you tell if a race is being organized by a runner, or runners?  Look to see if their website lists the course records. 

The upcoming Roxbury Community Benefit 5K on Monday, June 12, has the course records listed on its website.  The race is organized by the Morris County Striders.

 The Ridgewood Run (s) is organized by the North Jersey Masters running club.  The runs are a 10K, 5K and the road mile.  This Monday, the Ridgewood Run 10K is the USATF masters championship.  All the age division records are there to study and contemplate.

It is fascinating reading, and the records are not likely a goal for most runners,  but might be for some.  For instance, the W60 record of 44:47 was set by Toshiko d’Elia of Ridgewood many years ago.  Will Morristown’s Nora Cary be able to take that age division record away?  Don’t bet against her.  Cary finished this year’s Cherry Blossom 10K in 43:44 and at the Giralda Farms’ 10K this past November in 43:27.

No one has taken the other d’Elia records; W70 is 48:53, and the W75 is 55:13.  d’Elia died in 2014 at age 84 with a lot of records in her running log.  

There are no soft records for the race that has been in existence for 41 years.  Is there a 45 to 49 man who can beat Hugh Sweeney’s 33:15?  Former Randolph runner Jonathan Frieder, now living in Rye Brook New York but still running in New Jersey, is having an outstanding season.  Maybe he can do it.   Frieder finished third at the Dedham MA 10K national masters championship the end of April in 33:35.  The Dedham course has a killer hill midway in the race and is far tougher than Ridgewood’s. 

How about Peter McArdle’s 34:00.7 in the M50, or his more astonishing 33:44.9 in the M55 division.    Brian Crowley of Hillsborough or Mark Zamek of Lavallette might have a shot at the M50 record.  The M55 record?  That’s out of sight.  McArdle has since returned to his native UK so unlikely to challenge any of the older age divisions.

Reno Stirrat of Rockaway did go after and take the M60 record in 2016, finishing in 38:28.01.  Will he top that this year?  Stirrat had some down time a few months ago but appears to be coming back into top form.  His 38:39.83 at Newport is mighty close.

Will Misa Tamura of Ridgewood beat her own record of 38:43.95 that she set in 2016?   Lisa Swain of Fair Lawn finished in 43:38.2 in the W55 division in 2014 and did a 43:43 in 2015.  Now 59 Swain would have to improve a lot on her Newport 10K of 45:55 earlier this month to top that time in 2017.

Registration begins at 7:00 a.m. tomorrow, with the 10K the first running event in the line-up starting at 8:20, five minutes after the wheelchair athletes go off.


The Super Hero Half Marathon had a local touch with all the top runners of note being from Morris County.   The exception is Karen Auteri who won the women’s race in 1:30:22.  Auteri is from Belvidere in Warren County.

Second place woman was Alix Jennings, 46, of Madison, who was also the first masters woman.  She finished in 1:32:18.  Brenda Epstein of Morris Plains was third in 1:33:6.

Sebastian Nicewicz of Madison won the race in 1:19:58.  Second place was also the first place masters man.  Kevin Fitzgerald, 43, of Wharton finished in 1:21:57.   Trevor Emmitt of Morristown was third in 1:23:48.

The masters age grading was topped by sixty-two year old Nora Cary of Morristown who finished in 1:39:40 – age graded at 86.77% PLP.    Second in age grading was 68 year old Kay Rees, also of Morristown, whose time of 1:58:58 age graded at 79.33%.

On the masters men side, Carl Weaver, 68, of Morris Plains finished in 1:43:02 while Kevin Fitzgerald, 43, of Wharton finished in 1:21:57.  Both tied at 74.88% PLP.

The men’s relay team division had 18 teams, the women’s teams had 52, and the coed division had 46 teams, indicating that the organizers really hit the jackpot by promoting the relay concept.    That’s  116 teams participating out of the 1,135 finishers.



Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.

Contact Madeline Bost at

Monday, May 8, 2017

Good turnout for the Newport 10K on Sunday

Published by the Daily Record of Morris County
on Sunday, May 7, 2017
 By MADELINE BOST, 973-584-9302
As expected the national elite and international elite grabbed the headlines at the Newport 10,000 in Jersey City on Saturday.   Craig Lutz of Flagstaff AZ won the race in 29:46, while Rosa Moriello of Brighton MA was the women’s winner in 34:17.
But the New Jersey elites were there also, including elite local runners.  Roberta Groner of Randolph finished third woman in 35:27. Elena Rozhko, 44, of Morristown was the first masters woman to finish.  Her time was 38:32.
 Brian Crowley, 52, of Hillsborough was the first masters runner to finish.  His 34:32 topped the age grading at 88:45%.  The first local masters man was Terri Davidson, 45, of Randolph who finished third masters man in 35:35.  Beau Atwater, 59, of Bernardsville finished seventh master and his 37:51 age graded at 85.84% for third in that ranking.  In between was Reno Stirrat, 63, of Rockaway who finished in 38:39 for an 87.23% PLP.
The race was a championship for open men and women.   Twenty-one full teams competed on the men’s side with the Garden State Athletic Club taking first, second and third in their alphabetical order.  The Morristown based Garmin team placed fourth and the Garmin women took fifth in their division.  Twelve full women’s teams competed with three others missing their fifth runner and thus coming up short of a point.
The Clinton County Run 15K team results were sorted out after last weekend’s race.  Two teams had somehow become merged into several large teams last Saturday.  They now reveal a very interesting phenomenon -  a tie between two teams from the same club, so close they are separated by less than a tenth of a second.
The Garden State Athletic Club put two teams in the open division that were so closely matched in talent that a tie could have been predicted.  But this goes way beyond anything the team captain could have imagined.
The B team’s first five runner’s times totaled 4:44.27.68.  The A team’s time was 4:44.28.38.  A difference of 7 tenths of a second.
Local teams finished out of the medals for the most part except for the Garmin club whose teams placed third in M40 and M50.  The Do Run Running Club has merged with the North Jersey Masters club for racing purposes and the North Jersey W60 team placed first with the help of new member Nora Cary of Morristown.  Their W50 team placed second thanks to Cary also.

The numbers and places will change with the addition of Saturday’s team places in the USATF club and team grand prix
The Shore Athletic Club was leading the overall club grand prix but with the Garden State teams racking up impressive places that lead surely has evaporated. 
By my unofficial count, Garden State is now in the lead in the grand prix with the Shore team very close -  167 to 162.   Other things to keep in mind is that the results posted on the internet at CompuScore are not considered official until they have been verified.

The Whippany Fireman’ race is this morning.  The 5K starts at 8:30 a.m.    Next Saturday the Girl’s on the Run 5K and the Run Around Lake Mohawk in Sparta will start at 8:00 a.m. 
I’ve long ago stopped trying to keep up with all the races going on in the area.  At one time CompuScore and Best Racing were the predominant race timing companies in this area.  Now, with an increase in timing companies, and some of the races not getting into any race calendars it is nigh impossible to be assured of complete accuracy.  All USATF sanctioned events are in the association’s web calendar, and Race Forum does a good job of including both sanctioned and non-sanctioned races. 

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Clinton Country Run mimics Midland

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, April 30, 2017


Runners whose racing history goes back a few years remember the Midland Run 15K that was held about mid-May in Far Hills.  One factoid of that race was the change from cool spring weather leading up to the race, then, in a burst of summer fun, the heat on race day.

It comes to mind when viewing the race results of the Clinton Country Run 15K, held on Saturday.  The Midland race was the 15K USATF New Jersey championship back in the day, and the Clinton race is now the championship.  The Clinton course is far less challenging than the old Midland course, but it does feature one long grade late in the race.  One has to imagine that Saturday’s heat was taking its toll as the racers climbed that Clinton hill.

Joshua Izewski of Doylestown PA managed the hill and the heat best and crossed the finish line first in 52:21.  Jonathan Sewnig of Metuchen was second in 53:26 and Sean Donohue of Keyport was third in 54:15.

Amanda Marino of Bradley Beach was the first woman to finish.  Her time was 56:54.  Aimee Chegwidden of Hamburg was second in 60:36.

Nora Cary, 62, of Morristown topped the age grading with her 1:09:36 time that hit the charts at 87.56%.    On the masters men side, the rivalry continues between Beau Atwater, 59, of Bernardsville and Gary Leaman, 57, of Hardwick.   Leaman ran the faster time on Saturday- 58:11 but Atwater out age graded him.  His 58:29 was ranked at 83.75% to Atwater’s 84.87% - for the top two spots on the chart.

The race was a championship for all age divisions so drew a full roster of teams.  A computer error or perhaps a human error lead to a mix-up for two of the teams that was not resolved as this goes to press.  It appears that some of the Garden State Track Club members were placed on the Clifton team rosters.

The errors prove the point as to why the Long Distance Running committee does not announce the team division results at the races.  All results are checked for errors before being made official.


All of the open men and women teams will be in Jersey City next Saturday, May 6, for the Newport 10K.  The race is the NJ championship for the open division.   A week to recover is obviously not the most ideal planning, but sometimes the committee has to work with the races that bid, and must weigh factors other than just the calendar.  As the open men and women are younger by definition than the masters it can be assumed that their recovery is less difficult than for the older athletes.

The Newport course is viewed as both beautiful and challenging.   A look at the course map with 30 turns explains why it is challenging, while running along the Hudson River Waterfront walkway with spectacular views of the New York skyline can only be beat by the half marathon run from the same location in September. 

The race is unique in that elite athletes from around the country; both citizens and non citizens are invited to race with prize money being awarded to that category of runners.  At the same time the New Jersey athletes have dedicated prize money exclusive to just them.

The fastest time was recorded in 2004 when Julius Kibet won the race in 28:42.  In 2016 Donn Cabral of Annandale won in 29:39.   Brianne Nelson of Golden CO was the first woman to finish with a time of 33:08.


Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at