Cool temperatures in the 40's gave way to blaring sunshine this Sunday as TTer's lined up against the competition at Compo Beach in the 35th annual Minuteman Roadraces.
The 5K was the first race to go off at 8:30am, and was highlighted by the 20:22 performance of Anna Pluta, in only her third race ever. She was the second overall woman. The 20 minute barriar is a mark of excellence for women in 5K racing, to be this close in one's rookie season of roadracing speaks of remarkable talent.
Kimberly Driscoll, (Anna's teamate on Target's USATF sanctioned racing team,) has a resume in recent years at the Minuteman that include top 3 Age Group & Overall finishes in the 10K. Dropping down to 5K this year, Kim found herself closing out the early Compo morning on the Podium once again with 2nd Place Age Group Honors!
The men of TT brought their 'A' game to the affair as well, as Bill Donzeiser, a newer individual at TargeTraining, cracked the 20 minute barriar with a 19:48, which was good enough to garner the 3rd Place Age Group Award, and a 9th Place Overall Finish.
In the 10K several TTers met or came close to meeting stringent personal goals. Amadeo Rodriguez knocked 3 minutes off his personal best, and was extremely gratified with his race result, "I felt great out there, beautiful morning," he added.
For head Running Coach Timothy Milenkevich, victory was in hand after about 100 meters as he wasted no time opening up a massive gap with a sub 5 minute opening mile. Milenkevich was disappointed with his time: "I was 1 second from setting a personal best, 33:10, just awful," he said, tongue in cheek. Still, spectators were awe-filled at the 2 minute margin of victory Timothy held in Westport's #1 roadrace, only 2 weeks removed from his 2:33 winning Marathon in Narragansett, Rhode Island.
Similarly, Blake Benke followed up his 2:45 Boston Marathon performance 2 weeks ago with a 6th overall finish in the 10K and the 1st place Age Group Award. Blake's wife, Diane, also illustrated stellar turnover and broke into the top 10 of her age group in the ninth position.
Eric Sydor, winner of the 2012 TargeTraining Cranbury Park Challenge, put up a 42-minute 10K, which placed him 8th in the Age Group. Not quite in the form he was in the Autumn, Eric plans on ramping up his training to be ready for the 2014 Boston Marathon since qualifying at the Hartford Marathon in October.
Congratulations to All, you ran admirably and exhibited an affinity for athletic excellence and accomplishment!