25 years later, Great Race race director still sees firsts
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Mike Radley has worked 34 of 35 Great Races, and Sunday was his 25th anniversary as race director. He has seen the race grow, shrink, then grow again to a record 15,000 runners this year.
When he started out, organizers used frisbees as timing devices. Radley has seen a lot, but Sunday was the first time he saw a couple get engaged at the end of the race.
Following the announcement of the 10K and 5K winners, Dan Hains, 32, of Bloomfield popped the question to his girlfriend of two years, 27-year-old Amanda Smith, on stage.
“You don't see that every day,” Radley said. “That's just a genuine moment for us at the Great Race. It's one of the things that I think just speaks to the nature of the race. It's the people's race.”
• Only one runner was transported to an area hospital, Radley said. It was not believed to be serious.
• Former Avonworth High School and Penn State runner Lucas Zarzeczny was third in the men's 10K. It was his first race since he was a senior in college 1 1⁄2 years ago. “I had to learn how to run again essentially,” said Zarzeczny, who led until midway through Oakland. “I paid the price a little at the end, but I still got my goal, which was to finish in the top 10.” Zarzeczny won the PIAA Class AA state cross country title in 2006.
• James Hommes, 41, of Pittsburgh was the 10K men's masters winner and ninth overall in 33:02, and Cheryl Collins-Gatons, 45, of Greensburg was the women's masters winner and sixth woman overall in 36:05. Heather Melzer of Mars, who was the overall 5K winner in 2011, came in third and was the top masters woman with a time of 18:25. The top 5K masters man was Dominic Wyzomirski, 53, who finished in 17:24.
• More than a dozen area Army reservists from the 316th Expeditionary Sustainable Command in Coraopolis and the 3rd Medical Command Deployment Support participated in their own shadow Great Race, desert style, at Camp Arifjan in Kuwait at about 3:30 a.m. local time Sunday.
• A group of “Perfect Great Racers” who have participated in the event every year dropped to 24 Sunday. Tom Kennedy missed his first Great Race because of travel to China.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Injuries to Penguins’ Ehrhoff, Letang force defense to pick up slack
- College basketball notebook: Tennessee close to hiring Barnes
- Five is enough for Penguins’ defensemen
- Reversing the field: Pirates continue to raid Yankees for hidden skill
- Steelers’ Tomlin, Pirates’ Hurdle share similar philosophy
- Blaze guts South Greensburg home, kills 2 dogs
- Ligonier doctor’s appeal to practice rejected
- Laurel Mountain Ski Resort discusses planned revival
- NFL coaches weigh in on Polamalu’s legacy
- High school roundup: Homers highlight Canon-McMillan’s win over Bethel Park
- Pa. Game Commission will continue practice of boosting deer population in certain areas