The Elliot Festival Day 5k was this morning in Elliot, Maine. There were 683 finishers this year, including Kay West (pictured right) who finished below the USATF age group guidelines time in 1:28:53; she was the oldest finisher at 97 years of age!
The weather conditions were near perfect for running, with clear skies and cool temperatures in the mid-60s. The course is slightly aided with about 5 feet of total elevation loss.
Ethan Hemphill did not face the stiff competition that he had last year, but bettered his time to win the race in 15:08. There were 20 finishers under 17 minutes, when Mariko Holbrook came in to win the women’s race by a healthy 26 seconds.
Team results for this race are based upon an age and sex graded time, so despite winning the race Ethan did not even score to help Dirigo in their almost 2 minute win over Whirlaway Racing. The age graded times of Tom Ryan, Mike Payson, and Pete Bottomley were all faster than Whirlaway’s first runner.
Dirigo had a good showing at the race; my time was not even fast enough to make it into the team results. I failed to meet my goal of running under 16 minutes. I was right on pace through 2 kilometers (6:24) but wound up running at about the same pace as I have for most of this season. My 16:37 was a 1 second season PR.
In a reversal of last year specifically, and just about any race with a downhill finish generally, I managed to out sprint TJ Hesler by about 4 seconds coming into the finish line. I did not manage to keep up with Chris Gatchell, who ran a personal best 16:16 (congratulations!)