RUSSELL, Ky. – If the victors of Saturday’s 36th annual East Greenup Kiwanis Run By The River had one thing in common: A winning attitude.
Pedro’s Mark McFann described his victory in the men’s 10K as “awsome,” while the winner of the women’s division, Amy Compston of Ashland, shaved a minute and 40 seconds off her best-ever 10K time to win a first place trophy for the first time in 17 years of running competitions.
Meanwhile, Aaron Stevens of Grayson, a sophomore in the track and cross country program at Western Kentucky University parlayed a week of intense training into a victory in the men’s 5K race.
Missy Taylor of Ashland grabbed her fourth winning trophy this year by winning the women’s 5K division. And while this was her first victory in Run By The River, she has won numerous other races including the last three in which she’s competed this year.
McFann, 39, finished the race with a time of 37:35, just four seconds ahead of Josh Holley, 25, of Milton, whose time was 37:39.
An Ohio State Highway Patrolman, McFann has competed in Run By The River for several years, but this was his first victory.
“I met my goal, which was to finish under 38:00,” he said. “It was a good day, this is one of my favorite races, and I’m really enjoying it.”
Compston, who finished the race with a time of 43:12, is well known in the Tri-State for her recent participation in the Boston Marathon. Just a short time after she finished that race, and 20 members of her family, had moved to an area to meet runners, a bomb was detonated near the finish line where they had all been standing just minutes earlier.
And even though she has completed many 5K and 10K races and marathons, Saturday was the first time in 17 years of running the 28-year-old nurse at Kings Daughters Hospital collected a winning trophy.
She is now in training for a 50 mile marathon that will raise money for missions in Eastern Africa.
Compston finished nearly six minutes ahead of the 10K runnerup, Lyndsey Burke of Ashland, a 15 year old student at Fairview High School, who turned in a time of 49:24.
Stevens, 19, finished with a time of 17:19, over a minute ahead of the second place runner, Jacob Hegelly, 16, of Russell, at 18:43.
At 45, Taylor finished almost two minutes ahead of the runnerup, Lisa Johnson, 44, of Raceland. Taylor’s time was 20:39; Johnson’s 22:01.
This year’s race, which raises money to support numerous Kiwanis projects, including scholarships for Key Club students, sponsorship of two builders clubs and a terrific kids program, Shop with a Cop, the library summer reading program and food baskets at Thanksgiving, attracted 226 registered runners.
There were 141 who finished the 5K race, 63 in the 10K and a dozen walkers.
The wheels are already in motion for next year’s event on June 14, 2014, which will feature 5 special events within the main races. Runners will be eligible for trophies in a civic group and faith-based group category as well as for father/son, mother/daughter pairs and a stroller division.