Thursday, November 5, 2009

Kevin Sweeney wins FSECC 5K

Ocala's Kevin Sweeney reached the finish line ahead of over 400 other athletes, running 17:56 for the win at the FSECC 5K in Southwood on 5 November 2009. Sweeney was a few steps ahead of runner-up and defending champion Tim Unger, the top master finisher at 17:59. The morning's fleetest female was Kelly Stevens, who ran 21:06 to finish well ahead of runner-up Brook Pace at 22:50. The third woman across the finish line was the top woman master finisher, Julie Clark, in a time of 23:17.

By the second mile of the race, Sweeney and Unger had shaken off the rest of the field and were alone up front, Sweeney leading Unger. Over the next two miles Sweeney could not shake Unger, but Unger could not catch Sweeney. Never more than few strides apart, the leaders held their relative positions all the way to the end of the race. In the women's competition, Stevens took the lead early and held it, moving steadily away from the other women until she finished the race a quarter-mile ahead of the runner-up, Pace.

FSECC is the Florida State Employees Charitable Campaign, and the race benefits the state workers' United Way campaign. To encourage participation, there is an award for the state agency with the greatest number of entries--this year's honor went to the Florida Department of Health. A further incentive is the opportunity to get out of the office for an hour or two to run (or walk) a 5K around the Southwood area on a beautiful morning. For most of us, that would be reason enough.


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