Whose idea was it to have a cross-country 5K in mid-February?

Actually, three local running clubs came together to race in what the soccer world would call a “friendly.” Fortunately, the weather cooperated on Sunday, Feb. 19, and the White Clay Creek State Park XC course wasn’t too muddy (couldn’t have been better at this time of year, to be truthful). Four Creek Road runners challenged themselves on the course. The unique scoring system (by age-grading*) favored most of the old-timers; however, this meant that an 8-year-old boy won the race by virtue of having the top age grade of any of the more than 60 area runners!

photo of CRR Mark Deshon

CRR Mark Deshon gutting out the last few yards (photo by Kim Riccio)

CRR Keith Crispin, who ran for the Middletown Athletic Club, ran a 19:52 (finishing in 20th place), which was good for a score of 71.3 (26th overall). CRR Jay Coughenour, who ran for the Pike Creek Valley Running Club (PCVRC) after having done a ten-mile training run earlier in the morning, jogged through a 20:08 (finishing 22nd), which rated a score of 71.0 (28th overall). CRR Mark Deshon (pictured here and showing all the strain of XC racing), also ran for PCVRC and ran a 22:00 (finishing 39th), moving him up several places to 31st overall by virtue of a 70.0 score.  CRR Dan Simmons, running for PCVRC, got the most benefit out of the scoring system, having run a 25:35 (finishing 51st) but placing 41st with a 65.0 score.  Age does have its privileges.

*Age grading is a way of putting all race participants on a level playing field, regardless of age or gender. Age-graded scores let you compare your race times to those of different runners, as well as to the standard for your age and gender.  See an age-grading calculator.