On Sunday morning, November 18, 2012, parking was scarce along North Street and it’s neighboring roads. Though that was OK, because the weather was a runner’s dream and the little jaunt over to the Center’s COH Day Hab for the Gobble, Gobble, Road Race, registration was a nice warm up for the legs. This year, 170 5k and 10k runners and 30 one mile Fun Run participants laced up their sneaks, did a few stretches, and took on the slow growing, never ending, up hill grade of the good ol’ neighborhoods of Southbridge, MA. At every turn you found big smiling faces and heard “whoo hoo’s” and “You’ve got this” encouragements from the volunteers.
So when the sea of blue shirts, compliments of our Sponsors, Angel Guard Products Inc., Quinebaug Masonic Lodge, Metal Craft Machine, Rawson Material, Southbridge Tire Co, Inc., and Performance Graphics, took off at the ready, set, go…. who thought they would see the first finisher come down the last stretch so soon? 5k, 1st place finisher Hans Riemer from Groton, MA did finishing in 19:34. That is a 6:19 minute per mile! And the 5k top female runner Linda Spooner of Sturbridge, MA was hot on his heals finishing in 20:26, which is 6:35 minute per mile pace!
When the volunteers waved this way for 5k, and that way (away from town) for the 10k, 1st place finisher Scott Deslongchamps of Putnam, CT took that challenge in stride and finished in 36:53, a 5:57 minute per mile. That was also true for the top female finisher, Cindy Ouillette of Moosup, CT, who finished in 41:56, which is a 6:45 minute per mile pace. Did anyone realize that this was 6.4 miles of running? I can’t seem to go from my desk to my car across the street in under 6 minutes!
Goody bags, Books and Beans hot coffee and hot chocolate left in everyone’s hands and filled their bellies before and after the race. Medals were given to the top 3 places for each division. But most importantly, everyone enjoyed a wonderful day, being active and bringing awareness and support to the Center of Hope recreational programs by raising more than $3,000! Thank you to everyone who participated, volunteered and sponsored the Gobble, Gobble Road Race, and don’t forget to invite more of your friends for next year!