The Annapolis Striders’ Bob Marino just turned 40 years old, and he celebrated in a big way by out-duelling Westminster’s Scott Frampton, 13 years younger, to win the 10-Mile Challenge Race in Columbia, MD, last Sunday. Marino and Frampton took off at the start of the race, passing through the first mile in 5:03 and quickly established themselves as the undisputed leaders. The two ran together for the entire 10 miles with no more than a few yards ever separating them. The battle came down to the final quarter mile through which Marino managed to hang on and win in 54:13, a scant seven seconds ahead of Mr. Frampton.
Howard County’s Bea Marie Altieri shattered the women’s field with a personal 10-mile record of 59:47, which is amazing considering the hilliness of the course. Ms. Altieri seized the lead at the very beginning of the race and left Baltimore’s top women, Stacey Nicholson and Denise Knickman, far behind her wake. “I don’t know what’s gotten into her,” said George Altieri, Bea Marie’s husband.
Although Marino and Frampton made outstanding efforts, their individual performances had little effect on the outcome of the team challenge competition. For the second year in a row, the Howard County Striders team defeated six other local teams put up by Road Runner’s Club of America (RRCA) clubs. Striders accounted for 11 of the first 30 runners to finish, including Ms. Altieri. In addition to the overall Team Challenge competition, the Striders also won both the Men’s and Women’s Team competitions. Gerry Clapper spearheaded the Strider effort with a 55:17, good for third place overall, with Tony Basile, Paul Bourg, and Dave Berardi also finishing among the top ten men. On the women’s team, Bea Marie enjoyed strong support from Suzy McCulloch, who ran a personal best 1:03:45 and placed fourth among the women, and Vanessa Cox, who was the sixth woman. The local RRCA clubs sending teams to the 10 Mile Challenge included perennial rivals such as the Baltimore Road Runners and Montgomery County Road Runners. Each team consisted of the top 16 male finishers and the top three women finishers. Strider Vice President and masters racing team captain Mick Slonaker accepted the team awards from RRCA representatives Dave Cooley and Freddi Carlip at a post-race ceremony in the gymnasium of the Howard Community College.
The Howard County Striders have hosted the 10 Mile Team Challenge each year since 1980 (although snow cancelled the race one year) and had previously won the team competition 11 times. Paul Goldenberg served as race director this year, and he enjoyed the support of numerous Strider course marshals as well as the Howard County Police, who tightly controlled the Sunday-morning traffic along the race course. The 10-mile RRCA-certified course begins and ends at Howard Community College in Columbia and follows pleasant but hilly suburban roads through the Hickory Ridge neighborhood of Columbia, MD.
A total of 349 runners finished the race. All finishers received a commemorative key-chain and a peanut-butter PowerBar. The Howard County Striders received engraved pewter plates for winning the team championships. The plates will be displayed at Feet First in Wilde Lake Village Center.
by Jim Carbary