Winners in Max Bayne race had some different goals
By DAVE THEALL
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 21, 2001
Last Sunday's Max Bayne Half-Marathon at Fort DeSoto Park was a tuneup for one winner and a warm-down for another.
Having grown up in the city, Steve Wilcox, the men's winner, had run in previous Max Bayne races. He ran for Boca Ciega High then went on to Florida State, where he ran cross country and track. "Max Bayne is one race here I've always wanted to win," said Wilcox, 30. "It's a race I grew up with.
"It was cold out there at the start and windy. I could have run faster without the wind and maybe if I was pushed," Wilcox said. "But after leaving a small group that included Jim Burgasser, Jeff Delie and a high school runner from Largo (Danny Bauer), I pretty much ran alone, getting an idea of where I am in my training for my first Boston Marathon."
Wilcox has been running 35-50 miles a week in preparation for representing the Forerunners Club in Boston.
He won last Sunday in 1:17:01, well off of his personal best of 1:14:58, which he ran in Mobile, Ala. His 10K personal record is 31:35, which he ran on the track at FSU.
"I ran Chicago last fall in 2:48:29, and my goal at Boston this April will be to get under 2:45," Wilcox said.
"That's 6:18 per mile pace and a realistic goal for me despite the hills at Boston. I just hope it's not cold that day. I'm a warm-weather runner. I don't like wearing layers of clothes."
Patty Farese, the women's winner, was late getting to the starting area. But when she arrived, it was just a matter of reeling people in.
"I was back at the car getting my two boys squared away with our babysitter when the gun went off," said Farese, 38, a member of the St. Pete Mad Dogs.
"I started off with cold feet, cramps and a toothache and wasn't able to pass (runner-up) Denise Skinner until about the 6-mile mark," Farese said.
Farese won in 1:32:07, just off of her winning time of 1:31:22 at Brandon last month.
She was coming off of a fifth-place finish (3:14) at the Dec. 10 Hops Marathon. She also has a 3:05 marathon to her credit, good for third at last year's Gulf Beaches Marathon.
Farese and her husband, John, plan to run in today's Gulf Beaches as a relay, an activity they started doing 12 years ago when they met.
He was a runner, and she wasn't. Now she's the better runner.
"He's very supportive of me, and so are the Mad Dogs," Farese said.
"My next goal is to break an hour for the 15K at Gasparilla. I ran 1:00:26 there last year. The race falls on my birthday this year; a good time to break my personal record."
NOTES: Jeff Delie of Palm Harbor stayed with Wilcox the longest, finishing strong in 1:18:48. He is still recovering from a bicycle crash two months ago. He was in a tight pack of cyclists when the person ahead of him swerved. He broke his collarbone, which now is only 50 percent healed.
"Considering everything, I was pleased with my race," said Delie, 44.
"It was a good indicator of where I am now, and perhaps, I can get under 2:45 (today) at the Gulf Beaches Marathon."
Bauer hung on for third in 1:20:15, followed by Burgasser (1:22:53) and Keith Batten (1:23:31) of Clearwater.
Delie's wife, Mary, finished fifth. Dianne Cayll was third, and Lisa Kothe fourth.
RACE MANAGEMENT: It was an even longer day for most race officials and volunteers of the organizing West Florida Y Runners Club.
Race director Duncan Cameron was up at 4 a.m. and out the door in Palm Harbor just before 5. He got home at 1:30 p.m.
Cameron had a successful 2000 season in his 55-59 age group. In 31 races, he compiled 14 wins, eight seconds and two thirds. Three races did not have age-group awards.
Another runner in his age division, Tampa's Tom Sullivan ran 70 races last year and won 70 awards.
Not all were top-three age-group awards, however. At the Gasparilla 15K, he finished ninth in the 55-59 group but qualified for a top 10 percent award.
HOUSTON MARATHON: Stacie Alboucrek of Fort Lauderdale won the women's division of last Sunday's event in 2:43:42.
GULF BEACHES MARATHON: Clearwater's Judy Maguire won't be defending her women's title today. Instead, she'll team with David Avila of the Dianetics Running Team in the two-person mixed relay.
If Avila meets his goal of 1:18 and Maguire runs 1:25, their 2:43 will be hard to beat.
There will be about 1,500 marathoners, up significantly from last year's field of 635.
Forty-four states and 11 foreign countries, including Russia, Japan, Belgium and Peru, will be represented.
"This course is probably one of the most scenic a marathoner could run," said race director Chris Lauber, a graduate of Boston College, where he became enthralled with the Boston Marathon.
"It combines beautiful water views with excellent roadways through exclusive residential areas.
"By using the popular Pinellas Trail for a stretch of more than 9 miles, we will minimize inconvenience to residents and motorists," he said. "In addition, the early starting time (7 a.m.) will help reduce potential traffic tie-ups."
The event will benefit Abilities of Florida, a nonprofit Clearwater corporation that trains people with disabilities and other special needs for mainstream jobs and productive lives.
UPCOMING EVENTS: Another Super Bowl Task Force sanctioned event is Friday's Saucony SuperRun 5K from BayWalk in downtown St. Petersburg.
It starts at 6 p.m.
The race will be scored by computer chip. Saucony will provide prizes, a band will entertain at the post-race affair and ESPN will cover the event for a delayed showing.
Enter at www.active.com or call 424-4052.
On Saturday, the challenging Flatlanders Challenge 10K moves to a new location outside Brooksville in Spring Lake. It starts at 8:30 a.m.
For details, call (727) 849-7588.
On Jan. 28, the Naples Half Marathon will serve as the state championship and award $15,000 in prize money.
There's no race-day registration. For an application, go to http://www.naplesnews.com/marathon.
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