Monday, April 13, 2009

Robida outruns a thousand to win the Palace Saloon 5K

race photoOver a thousand runners left James Messer Fields Park just after 8:00 am on 11 April 2009, headed for the Palace Saloon. Sixteen minutes and twenty-one seconds after the starting gun had sounded, John Robida was the first to arrive, becoming the overall winner of the 35th annual Palace Saloon 5K. Seven seconds back David Altmaier edged out Stephen Cox for the runner-up spot, 16:28 to 16:30. Top master runner honors went to Michael Martinez, who finished seventh overall in 17:22. It was a repeat title for Martinez, who was also the Palace Saloon Run's fastest master in 2006. A Grand Master (age 50 and over) title was awarded for the first time this year, and David Yon took the new prize, running 18:41.

race photorace photoLisa Johnson successfully defended her women's title, beating out the nearest challenger, Amy Paine, 18:11 to 18:15. 2002 titleist Allison Eagen was the third woman in at 19:03. During this century, Julie Clark had established a near monopoly on the women's master division, winning the honors in six of the last seven years. But in this year's Palace Saloon 5K, Mary Anne Grayson broke Clark's stranglehold, running 20:22 to finish as the top woman master. Jane Johnson took home the first ever women's Grand Master prize with a 20:29.

The race had 1,022 registered finishers, the most ever recorded in the 35-year history of the Palace Saloon 5K. The 36th annual Palace Saloon 5K is scheduled for 10 April 2010.


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