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August 5, 2008     Cape Gazette
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August 5, 2008

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Sports & Outdoors 24 "rY, AUGUST 5 - THURSDAY, AUGUST 7, 2008 Cape Gazette Africans win 11th Run for J.J. 5K race By Dave Frederick A pair of Ethiopian country- men dropped off of Surf Avenue and sprinted stride for stride to- ward the victory chute last Sun- day morning, Aug. 3, at the Uth running of the Run for J3. 5K with 21-yearold Abiyot Abebe cross- ing in 14:52 and getting there a second ahead of 22-year-old De- jene Nigussie (14:53) to win the race. The pair ran splits of 4:49, 4:48 and 4:45 and reached the three- mile mark in 14:22 side by side. The pace was well off the state record of B52, set at last year's race by Kenyan Nelson Kiplagat. Nigussie smiled afterwards and showed the arm and elbow move used by Abebe to maintain first position, but Abebe just laughed and indicated his arm motion was just natural form kept close to his body. Abebe is in the United States as part of an Elite Athletes pro- gram based in Silver Spring, Md., while Nigusse runs with team ESMI out of West Chester, Pa. A storied backdrop of Ethiopi- an running history is Abebe Bikela, the first athlete from the African continent to win a gold medal when he won the Olympic marathon in Rome in 1960 run- ning barefoot in a cool 2 hours and 15 minutes. Bikela came back and won in Tokyo in 1964 run- ning 2:12. His country mate, Mamo Walde, won the Mexico City Marathon in 1968. Bikela became a paraplegic in 1969 after a car accident and died in 1973.. Walde was imprisoned in his own country, spent nine years in jail and died in 2002. Michael Wardian, holder of three national titles in 2008 for Ultra Distance running including a recent 50-mile championship, was third in 15"33. Rounding out the men's top five were Mo- hammed Fadil out of Morocco in 15"57 and Enos Benbow of Jamia- ca in 16:29. The women's race was another battle to the finish line as Jane Mnia, 21, from Kenya crossed the line in 16:16 to hold off Mamitu Daska in i6:19 for the victory. Muia collected a bonus of $50 sponsored by the Rehoboth Beach Running Company for es- tablishing a new course record, Continued on page 26 DAN COOK PHOTOS LEADING THE PACK AT THE START of the Run for J.J. SK are (I-r) Rehoboth Beach Patrol lifeguard Lawrence Lenhart (sec- ond in 14-19 age group), Breck Vanderwende (first in 30-34), Rehoboth Beach Patrol lifeguard Bradley Lands (first in 20-24) Mike Wardian (third place overall), Abiyot Abebe (male champion), Dejene Nigussie (second place overall), Jane Muia (fe- male champion), Enos Benbow (fifth place overall) and Mohamed Fadil (fourth place overall). All who participated are shameless and blameless 'Tin your Venus; I'm your fire at your des/re." were bubbling and color hues produced an eerie visual Only Dewey Beach could produce such a spontaneous "group stu- pid" happening. "I did not authorize this and do not approve," said police Chief Hal Barber tiding in the lead cruiser. A host of Dewey lifeguards who would clear the beach in such a storm elected to run in the race. So did parents with their children, along with lawyers, accountants, entrepre- neurs, retired people, teachers, medical professionals while a large-target photojournalist like me stood out in the rain with no umbrella snapping out-of-focus pictures. Many runners were porch- protecting themselves at the North Beach pavilion - the old flat roof with no sides protection from lighting next to the bay trick - or hunkered down inside open trucks when they heard the cannon go off. And rather than scream "Waiter, a round of Bloody Marys over here!" they irate Pete, with a Phi) in hand and a Mensa Soci- ety card in his wallet and shirt somewhere in his car, fLred a cannon in a light- ning storm last Saturday morn- ing at 8 rru and 300 people thought it was a good idea to come from under cover and be- gin running a 5K race called Venus on the Half Shell. Wires were snapping, puddles DAVE FREDERICK PHOTOS IT WAS A STORMY START OF THE Venus on the Half Shell SK race held in in Dewey Beach on Saturday, Aug. 2. all ran to the starting line like Pavlovian shepherds and chased the race, complaining as they cruised, picking off slow people in the back who didn't appreci- ate getting passed by so many striders who only wanted to es- cape the ghetto neighborhood of plus-30-minute 5K runners. Fixing blame does not apply here. All who participated are shameless and blameless and in the end it was different and fun and imperfect and ill-advised. Baby, we were born to run. Yes, there were babies in the race, too. BEllING MY BUTt - Yeah, I'm jealous that the entire Carrie Lingo nuclear clan is in China doing interviews with Kevin Tresolini of the News Journal. What is Kevin doing there in- stead of me? But seriously, I don't think I could handle 18 hours in a fuselage going 600 miles an hour over a 5,000-mile ocean unless of course someone else paid for it. I did discover in my down time, which is all the time, that all UnitedStates Olympic hockey games on the women's side will be covered live. Perhaps the men as weU, but who wants to watch a bunch of Pakistani naturalized West Coast citizens play men's field hockey? You do? USA opens against Argentina Sunday, Aug. 10. You may have to choose be- tween hockey and the trap shooting gold medal fmal. The USA plays Japan Aug. 12 followed by Germany on Aug. 14, New Zealand on Aug. 16 and Great Britain Aug. 18. The medal games are Aug. 22. Not wishing to "pop any balloons" at opening ceremonies, but the United States is not expected to Continued on page 25