Sprint for Monroe organizers, participants, thankful for a live event

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Jake Duckworth, 26, who grew up in Monroe, crosses the finish line to win the Sprint for Monroe 5K at Wolfe Park Sunday.

MONROE, CT — After a year of runners logging their times online for a virtual Sprint for Monroe event at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Wolfe Park’s grounds were blanketed with tables, tents and people wearing T-shirts and shorts on a cool Sunday morning.

“I’m very pleased with the turnout,” said Amy Primorac, chair of the Sprint’s committee. “I wasn’t sure what to expect with COVID. I’m glad people felt comfortable coming in a safe way and enjoying themselves together as a community.”

Frank Bent, one of the original founders of the Sprint for Monroe, estimated that close to 375 people were in attendance.

When the town was raising money for the Kid’s Kreation Playground at Wolfe Park 29 years ago, Bent and fellow Monroe Junior Jaycees members — Paul Moyse, Ed Butler, George Puglisi, Kevin Early and the late Carl Matthews — organized the first Sprint.

It has since turned into an annual event raising money for Project Warmth, Monroe Food Pantry, Monroe Social Services, town firefighters and the Monroe Volunteer Emergency Medical Service.

Primorac said any money left over will support other things in town, usually something for the schools such as a robotics team or the Masuk Color Guard.

Victorinox Swiss Army was the title sponsor for this year’s Sprint, which also enjoyed the support of other local businesses.

Bent said he was grateful for the police officers who detoured traffic for the race, the firefighters and emergency medical technicians who volunteered, and Monroe Parks and Recreation Director Missy Orosz and her employees.

The event relies on many volunteers, including First Selectman Ken Kellogg who helped with parking.

Among the runners was Jasper McHugh, 9, of Sandy Hook. He was the top male finisher in the age 1-12 category with a time of 00:22:29.

“I run USATF Junior Olympic Cross Country,” Jasper said. “Some people are faster than me. I was just hoping to come in first.”

Jeffrey Townsend, 49, of Woodbridge, has participated in the Sprint for Monroe for many years. On Sunday, he finished third overall.

“It was great weather, so nice after a really humid week,” Townsend said. “It was nice to run without feeling like a sweat bucket.”

Townsend said he was wearing sneakers designed to make him run faster. “I was cruising down hills,” he said. “It’s a hilly course, so it makes a difference.”

“It was really a fun race,” Townsend continued. “I’m so thankful to the organizers for putting it together despite the challenges. It’s nice to be live again.”

Race results

Jake Duckworth, 26, finished first overall out of 268 participants in the in person Sprint for Monroe 5K with a time of 15 minutes and 31 seconds and his fiancée, Josie Jacob-Dolan, 26, was the top female finisher with a time of 19 minutes and 5 seconds. She finished fifth overall.

The second place men’s finisher was Dane Krchnavy, 24, (00:17:38) and Towsend took third (00:18:32).

Andrea Myers, 38, won second place among female runners (00:19:22) with Stacy Huber, 36, coming in third (00:23:18).

Top Finishers

The following is a list of the top finishers by gender and age categories. For the complete race results, visit TLMRacing.com.

Male, ages 1-12: Jasper McHugh, 9, 00:22:29; Cooper Krom, 10, 00:26:06; and Christopher Kaelin, 10, 00:32:56

Female, ages 1 – 12: Emily Kaelin, 12, 00:28:02; Audrey Dickerson, 11, 00:28:39; and Lucy Bentley, 11, 00:28:39 — a fraction of a second behind Dickerson.

Male, 13-15: Jonathan Ganino, 15, 00:23:10; Brendan Kirberger, 14, 00:24:27; and Colin Valle, 15, 00:25:33.

Female, 13-15: Lucia Morales, 14, 00:29:27; Abby Kirberger, 14, 00:29:29; and Emily Vanderslice, 15, 00:31:41.

Male, 16-19: Owen Michael Smith, 16, 20:02; Thomas Morales, 16, 00:22:00; and Kyle Milks, 18, 24:21.

Female, 16-19: Victoria Gloria, 16, 00:33:43; Sophia Kellogg, 16, 00:34:31; and Sarah Catalano, 16, 00:36:58.

Male, 20-29: Jon Kyrchnavy, 29, 00:21:59; Andrew Cohen, 22, 00:24:30; and Alec Radocchia, 25, 00:25:52.

Female, 20-29: Nicole Krchnavy, 28, 00:24:37; Hailey Kobza, 23, 00:26:30; and Marissa Bucci, 27, 00:27:28.

Male, 30-39: Ryan Glick, 37, 00:19:01; Tim Geary, 35, 00:19:56; and Derek Favret, 32, 00:20:20.

Female, 30-39: Celine Capaldo, 38, 00:23:26; Jenna Rice, 33, 00:23:51; and Marissa Memoli, 37, 00:25:11.

Male, 40-49: Darrin Fodor, 43, 00:19:19; Jeff Kurjiaka, 43, 00:19:54; and Ed Marmen, 46, 00:21:50.

Female, 40-49: Susan Kivits, 48, 00:26:56; Ania Harrell, 40, 00:27:12; and Kimberly Parkman, 48, 00:29:02.

Male, 50-59: Jeremy Titus, 51, 00:20:53; Denis McHugh, 57, 00:22:05; and Stephen Cohen, 54, 00:23:45.

Female, 50-59: Anonymous, 55, 00:25:45; Maureen Vergato, 56, 00:26:12; and Cynthia Christo, 52, 00:27:30.

Male, 60-69: George Buchanan, 63, 00:19:37; Michael Elser, 64, 00:26:00; and Ken Hunt, 63, 00:28:45.

Female, 60-69: Anonymous, 61, 00:30:13; Jill Stilson, 64, 00:31:46; and Betsy Bielefield, 61, 00:32:34.

Male, 70-79: James Ashbrook, 76, 00:35:17 and James Silkenat, 74, 00:41:27.

Female, 70-79: Suzzanne Stark, 70, 00:36:28 and Jan Bosworth, 74, 00:45:44.

Masters:

Male: Jeffrey Townsend, 49, 00:18:32; Darrin Fodor, 43, 00:19:19; and George Buchanan, 63, 00:19:37.

Female: Kerry Fulchino, 41, 00:25:05; Anonymous, 55, 00:25:45; and Maureen Vergato, 56, 00:26:12.

Top Male Monroe Resident: Dane Krchnavy, 24, (00:17:38), Ryan Glick, 37, 00:19:01; and Darrin Fodor, 43, 00:19:19.

Top Female Monroe Resident: Stacy Huber, 36, 00:23:18; Jenna Rice, 33, 00:23:51; and Kerry Fulchino, 41, 00:25:05.

Top 3 Finishers for My Team Triumph: Adam Pearl, 53, 00:30:11, Lucas Crowell, 17, 00:30:11, and Denise Pearl, 53, 00:30:12.

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