And the Winners Are…
By JOHN GREGG, Correspondent, TB Reporter
Runners in the Tampa Bay area are still setting the pace in late season competitions.
TAMPA BAY – The weather is heating up and the racing season winding down, but there is still plenty to report on in the Tampa Bay-area running scene. Here is a wrap-up of some of the more notable results and news from last week in Tampa Bay-area running.
Mott in Elite Field at Grandma’s Marathon in June
Elite marathoner Jon Mott, a Northeast High and Webber International graduate, will run his next marathon on June 17th in Duluth, Minnesota as part of the elite field at the 2017 Grandma’s Marathon. Mott, who finished 20th overall at the Chicago Marathon last October, is once again shooting for a sub-2:18 finish and would like a share of the $40,000 prize purse given to the top ten male finishers . Mott has been training on his usual stomping grounds in Babson Park and recently won the First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon, a race he used to gauge his current fitness. He is also planning on racing in the Rock n’ Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon in September and hopes to return to the Houston Marathon in January where he set his current marathon PR of 2:18:12 in 2015. For more information on the 2017 Grandma’s Marathon go to grandmasmarathon.com.
Alidina Impresses at Fort Clinch 100
Clearwater resident Noora Alidina was the top female at last weekend’s Fort Clinch 100 ultramarathon on Amelia Island in Fernandina Beach. The 60-year-old, who is a four-time finisher of the Badwater 135 including a second place finish in 2005, was one of three women to complete the 100 mile looped-course which is run on a variety of terrain including single-track trail, pavement, beach sand and boardwalk. Alidina’s time of 28:08:18 was the sixth best time overall on a day when only 12 of 22 starters finished the race. Bren Tompkins of Savannah, Georgia was the overall winner in 21:45:46, just 10 minutes ahead of Fort Myers resident Cortland Wheeler, the 2016 Keys 100 men’s champion. St. Petersburg’s Ian Forsyth was one of 33 finishers in the 50 mile event, which was won by Sarah Grappo of Birmingham, Alabama in 8:54:55. For full results for 2017 Fort Clinch Ultras go to my2.raceresult.com.
Matuszczak Sets Saint Leo School Record in 10,000 Meters
Rafal Matuszczak set a Saint Leo University school record in the 10,000 meters last Friday night at the 2017 Raleigh Relays in Raleigh, North Carolina. Matuszczak who finished second to Jon Mott at the Gasprilla Distance Classic 15K in both 2014 and 2015, ran a time of 30:12.23 in a stacked field of collegiate runners. His time was not only a school record but beat the NCAA Division II provisional qualifying time by 48 seconds. The native of Wschowa, Poland was 39th overall last fall at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships hosted on his home course at Saint Leo. For full results of 2017 Raleigh Relays go to flashresults.com.
USF Runner Takes Chasco Main Street Mile
Nick Buliga, a member of the USF cross country team and graduate of Gulf High School, won the Chasco Main Street Mile on Saturday (March 25) in New Port Richey. The 22-year-old won with a time of 4:32 and bested current Gulf High distance runner John Jessup by 10 seconds. Lee Stephens of St. Petersburg finished third in 4:59, while 18-year-old Kaleigh Morehouse was the women’s winner in a time of 6:30. The Chasco Main Street Mile is a prelude to the Chasco Fiesta Parade in downtown New Port Richey and is run along the same route in front of parade spectators. For full results of 2017 Chasco Main Street Mile go to results.xacte.com.
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