Long Branch: It's the journey around Lake Takanassee that makes the fun, the joy of this annual event all summer.
Sure, the finish line is the target, but observers will see the smiles travel on the athletes all the way - for some the 5K (twice around the lake), and the "14 and Under" 5M contingent.
For the 5K, First went to Christopher Renn of Fair Lawn HS. Chris had a big victory as Junior Olympics National Champion on the 13-14 Class last week at Greensboro.
Ellen Daly, Rumson Fair Haven Regional HS took the 5K Lake Tak women's First. At age 16, she runs for her RFH Bulldogs.
Two "new faces" ran the 5K, both Monmouth Beach: John Mazzacco, 10, and Joey Quattrochi, 8. John is a cross country runner at school which starts in the 4th Grade. They got a hand for their 5K, usually held for older runners.
The 5M Race featured 25 kids, and was won by Lucas Genarrio from North Jersey. The girl's First Place went to a Middletown 7th Grader, Rhiannon Will, with her Dad cheering her on.
Next Monday, 6:30, closes the season for Shore AC and the Lake Tak. It will be a 2-Mile Run for all runners. Awards are by groups. There will be treats to celebrate.