These races, held at Griffith Park, offered a nice preview of the Jimmy Stewart Marathon Relay course. The first mile and a half moderately undulate, and the remaining miles are only slightly graded. This plus the pleasantly cool weather made for good times and a little hardware for TCLA'ers. The only questionable aspect of this race is the odd pairing of the title organizations. What the symphony and home improvement have to do with each other was never quite explained.
In the 5K, Clarence Smith looked strong while taking first place in his division with an 18:10. The women seemed to have a lock on second place with Wenise Wong, Nicole Scheunemann, and Angela Brunson all earning silver medals in their respective age groups. With smart pacing, Wenise set a p.r. and broke the twenty-minute barrier with 19:58. Nicole came back strong from the L.A. Marathon in 20:36, and Angela finished shortly thereafter in 21:14.
Just out of the money, Sam Spencer crossed the line in 19:07. Although this was a p.r., Sam was more concerned with the TCLA'er of similar age who finished in 16:55, thereby knocking Sam out of medal contention. Perhaps knowing that his time translates to a 3:04 marathon will make him feel better about the experience. Also close to a winning the ersatz velvet-ribboned brass medal, Schuyler Havens finished fourth in his division with a 20:24. His fiancé, Michele Figueirido set two p.r.'s.: The first at the one-mile mark when she went through in 7:36 (her fastest mile ever), and the second when she crossed the line in 24:39. Tuning up for a 5-miler next week in Central Park, Jeff Bernstein ran 21:30, and coming back from a lower extremity injury, Brian Bartholomew jogged through in 27 minutes and change.
In the 10K, Jacinda Raiche ran a fair effort with 38:38, but that was good enough for first in her division and second overall. Andreas Kemkes was not far behind with a 40:33 and a fourth place finish in his division. Paul Scott ended up with a 44:11. Jesus Rivera, who warmed up with Jeff, but being no wimp took on the 10K, came in a bit after Paul. Looking pleased with their efforts, all be they unpaid efforts, Dave Kent, John Moraytis, and Brian Panosian ran together for most of the race. Dave insisted that the course was long, John quietly agreed, and Brian proudly wore his effort on his nose.
Finally, it was nice to see Ashley from Niketown cheering on the TCLA'ers and others, and he would have been running himself, but first he has to remember that if he wants to race, he has to get up.
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