SARASOTA, Fla. - A record 3,000 runners and walkers took part in the 6th First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon & Relay, a 50 percent increase over 2010. Tampa’s Elias Gonzalez, age 34 and a member of Fit2Run running team, won the men’s title in 1 hour, 11 minutes, 35 seconds and North Port’s Heather Butcher, age 38 and Team New Balance runner, took the women’s title in 1:26:37.
Locally, Team New Balance team members Ricardo (Rich) Lomas of Venice, age 44, took the overall locals male division with a time of 1:15:52 for 3rd among all men, and Rachel Chambers, 38, of Sarasota and Team New Balance took 3rd among all women with a time of 1:30:25.
Race Director Javier Sanchez noted on the event: "It was the perfect day for a race in Sarasota and the new course and relay team option were hugely successful. We are looking forward to an even greater 2012 event on March 11th."
Additional titles and race stats follow. For a complete list of race results, visit www.sarasotahalfmarathon.com
Women (W): Lauro Barragan, age 43, 1:28:04
Men (M): Guy Schweiwiller, age 44, 1:20:04
Grand Masters Winners
W: Denise Skinner, age 55, 1:35:28
M: Jeff Lessie, age 50, 1:22:43
Relay Team Winners
New to the race this year, the two-person relay team race sold out with 160 total teams and 320 runners. Top finishers included:
Men’s Relay: Florida Feet Elite, 1:28:31
Women’s Relay: Badger Girls, 1:37:56
Co-Ed, Road Rash, 1:31:09
Spanning 72 years, 10-year old Cory Albrecht finished in 2:40;09 and 82-year old Don Krueger in 3:41:31. For females, Meredith Swift, age 11, finished in 2:20:45 and Eleanor Williams, age 74, finished in 3:23:31.
About U.S. Road Sports & Entertainment Group
U.S. Road Sports & Entertainment Group (USRS), a health and wellness company dedicated to the production of world-class endurance events, offers unparalleled participant sports experiences that showcase host communities and endure a deeply valued local asset through events that are a part of the city’s culture and identity. For each participant, USRS strives to offer events that allow participants of all skill levels the opportunity to improve their physical and mental health and accomplish life-altering goals while having fun. U.S. Road Sports provides sponsors and municipalities highly effective exposure to help maximize their presence and message in the community. In addition to the First Watch Sarasota Half-Marathon & Relay, USRS hosted events include South Florida’s largest road race, the ING Miami Marathon and Half Marathon®, as well as the Chicago Half-Marathon, Publix Georgia Marathon, 13.1 Marathon® Series and the Publix Escape to Miami Triathlon.