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Champions crowned at USATF Masters 5 Km Cross Country Championships


BUFFALO, New York -- With sunny skies and temperatures in the mid 60’s it was an ideal day to watch Masters cross country running at its finest. Delaware Park provided the perfect setting for USATF’s first cross country race of the fall season - USATF Masters 5 Km Cross Country Championships.

Individual champions were crowned in five-year age groups; age-grading prizes went to the runner with the highest age-grade score in each of the three men’s races and to the top 3 scorers in the Women’s races. There were team competitions as well for this national championship and to earn points toward the Club section of the Masters Grand Prix competition. All races were run over the two grass-covered loops of the Delaware Park course.


Sabra Harvey, freshly back from Malaga, Spain where she won two gold and three silver medals at the WMA World Championships, had the top age-grading score of the day at 95.66%. To run 21:46 at age 69 on a 5 km Cross Country course is quite amazing. The grass surface tends to result in slower times and hence lower age grading scores; Harvey regularly hits 100% on the roads, equivalent to the fastest possible time for a woman of that age. The other age-grading winners from the women’s race were: Marisa Sutera Strange, 55, 20:01 for 87.29 and Katherine Wolski, 52, 19:49 for 85.23. Men’s Winners included: David Angell, 41, 16:29 for 83.76; Alan Evans, 55, 17:57 for 85.44; and Doug Goodhue, 76, 22:24 for 85.16.


The top 3 Women across the finish line were Sonja Friend-Uhl in 19:21, Jill Braley in 19:42, and Abby Dean 5 seconds back. Top finishers in the three separate Men’s races included: David Angell 40+ 16:49, Tim Van Orden 50+ 17:17, and Russell Blatt 60+ 19:20.


Five-Year Age Division National Champions were crowned:

40-44: David Angell            16:29   Jill Braley                        19:42

45-49: Philippe Rolly          17:16   Sonja Friend-Uhl             19:21

50-54: Tim Van Orden        17:17   Katherine Wolski            19:49

55-59: Alan Evans           17:57   Marisa Sutera Strange       20:01

60-64: Russell Blatt            19:20   Ruth Rainero                   24:44

65-69: Frank Gioia              21:46   Sabra Harvey                      21:46

70-74: Gene Dykes             20:49   Deborah Bliss                      28:55

75-79: Doug Goodhue         22:24   Catherine Radle                  38:27

80-84: John Elliott              30:20   Tami Graf                            42:23

85-89: Eric Sieff                  40:34


The Team Competitions for the Women and the Men’s  60+ and older are determined by adding up the finishing places of the first 3 finishers on each team; Men’s 40+ and 50+ use the top 5 runners. Fourth and subsequent runners can displace the runners on other teams. So if a team has its runners go 1-2-3-4 and another team has its runners finish 5-6-7, the first team gets 1+2+3=6 and the second team gets 5+6+7=18 rather than the 4+5+6 they would get if the 4th runner for the first team had not displaced each of them. In more complicated scenarios, the displacing runner can make the critical difference in team finishing placements.


Women 40+: Sonja Friend-Uhl and Jill Braley went 1-2 in the Women’s race to lead the Atlanta Track Club to a 12-14-22 point victory over the Genesee Valley Harriers (GVH) and the Impala Racing Team. W50+: Marisa Sutera Strange, Lorraine Jasper, and Mary Swan went 1-3-5 to propel Athena to a handsome 9-17-34victory over the Checkers AC and GVH. W60+: GVH led by Sharon Moore and Cheryl Guth took this title unopposed. W70+ The Atlanta Track Club, with Leslie Brass, and Catherine Radle leading the way were also peerless in their win.

Men 40+: GVH, led by Kirt Komocki, Tim Rieth, and Josh Harter in 3rd, 4th, and 6th, saw off challenges from Checkers and the Willow Street AC who had a terrific battle for 2nd and 3rd at 32-49-50; M50+ Brad Kelley, Armando Oliveira, Mark Lindrud, and David Dorsey powered the Central Park Track Club to victor over GVH and Greater Philadelphia 38-54-76. M60+ In the tightest race of the day, GVH’s Timothy Riccardi, Mark Rybinski and Kevin Clinefelter packed it up, finishing 4th, 5th, and 6th with GVH tying the Hartford Track Club 15-15, but taking the victory on a tie-breaker. The Cal Coast Track Club took 3rd with 27 points. M70+ The Ann Arbor Track Club’s Terry McCluskey, Lloyd Hansen, and Doug Goodhue finished tight in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, giving Ann Arbor the victory over Greater Philadelphia and GVH 9-24-25, with Atlanta just 1 point back in 4th.


The final event of the 2018 Masters Grand Prix circuit will be the 15K Masters Championship in Tulsa Oklahoma on October 27th.


Submitted by

Paul Carlin

USATF Masters LDR/Media Coordinator

Running Professor LLC/

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