Record performances highlight another successful Winter Series

Winter Series women's overall winner Gina Miller (center, 158) runs with age-group champions Allyson Thompson (left) and Justyna Wilson during a recent race. PHOTO credit: Chrislee Butcher.

Now into its fifth decade, the Bucks County Roadrunners Club’s Winter Series just keeps rollin’ along like ol’ man river.

Or, to be exact, a lot faster than that.

The BCRR cold weather extravaganza just completed another successful season under the direction of John O’Brien. The club held its annual awards banquet last week to a lot of smiles, cheers and hand-clapping.

O’Brien is reluctant to take very much of the credit for this positive result because, he says, he has so much help from a seemingly endless cast of “veteran’’ volunteers.

“We have a core of people who come back every year and really pull everything together volunteer-wise,’’ O’Brien said. “I might be the series director but I wouldn’t be anywhere without Bill Schaffling.

“He takes care of everything, makes sure the equipment is there, that it’s set up for each race. He’s indispensable with everything as far as the series goes.’’

O’Brien also mentioned the contributions of Fred Gropper, Phil Miele and Lance Mervine.

As for the series itself, plenty of records fell, including a new overall women’s mark in the 15K (9.3 miles) when series overall women’s leader Gina Miller cracked the one-hour barrier with a sparkling 59:28.

No doubt she was helped by series veteran Justyna Wilson, who was just five seconds behind in 59:33.

Miller also set an age-group (30-39) record for the 5.3-mile standard by recording a time of 32:04. Again, Wilson (40-49) was not far behind in 32:25, establishing a new mark for that age group.

But for overall consistent excellent running, look no further than Christine Lloyd.

Running in the 50-54 division, Lloyd set new standards in the 5K (20:24), the 5.3-mile distance (35:13), the 4.6-mile distance (30:19) and the half-marathon (1:37).

Other age-group records were set by Bob Boland (60-69) in the 5K (20:35), Matt Pennock (19-and-under) in the 5.3 (29:08) and Lynn Lubbe (60-69) in the half-marathon (2:04.43).

Clearly, somewhat favorable weather conditions helped with these performances, especially compared to the winter of 2017-18 which was a snowy mess.

The only problem this season was occasional flooding at the Neshaminy Creek dam in Tyler State Park, which caused some course re-routing.

“This year was calm, I really needed it after last year,’’ O’Brien said with a chuckle. “Despite the flooding, we were able to get a race in every week.

“We seem to see new faces every year coming and going. It seems that people reappear in their 30s. And we have a big core in their 40s, 50s and 60s.’’

At the banquet, Bala Cynwyd’s Gene Dykes made an appearance. He recently broke the world record in the marathon for men 70 and over with a 2:54 but the mark will not be official because the course in Jacksonville was not USATF-certified.

In all, it was another banner year for the Winter Series. Congratulations to all who ran and those who turned in record performances.

>2018-19 BCRR Winter Series results


Overall: Jamie Gray

13-and-under: 1. Matthew Pantalone, 2. TJ Zwall, 3. James Quinn.

14-19: 1. Josh Gross, 2. Jackson McElhaugh, 3. (tie) Bill Wang, Leo Wang.

20-29: 1. Nick Accardo, 2. Bryan Obarowski, 3. Bram Wilusz.

30-34: 1. Martin Nat, 2. Joe Holton, 3. Sam Cler.

35-39: 1. Ethan Frank, 2. Emmanuel Giraneza, 3. Justin Christensen.

40-44: 1. Michael Karl, 2. Michael McElhaugh, 3. Dan Kiley.

45-49: 1. Kevin McKale, 2. Chuck Thompson, 3. Vitaly Belotserkovsky.

50-54: 1. Colm Quinn, 2. Bruce Lewis, 3. Peter Lederer.

55-59: 1. Joe Haughey, 2. Daniel Doolan, 3. (tie) Jim Maze, Dave Lubbe.

60-64: 1. Bob Boland, 2. Bill Schaffling, 3. Fred Gropper.

65-69: 1. Bob Easterly, 2. Rick Mingione, 3. Gary Corbi.

70-74: 1. Ed Hawkey, 2. Eric Tobias, 3. Skip Schanbacker.



>Overall: Gina Miller.

19-and-under: 1. Emily Peifer, 2. Holly Pantalone, 3. Olivia Millevoi.

20-29: 1. Kayley Heller, 2. Jessica Frick-Bosworth, 3. Karissa Weaver.

30-34: 1. Cristin Mustillo, 2. Bronwyn Bird, 3. Kacy Manahan.

35-39: 1. Allyson Thompson, 2. Jessica Tamamoto, 3. Kelli Sendel.

40-44: 1. Justyna Wilson, 2. Janee Sheppard, 3. Jennifer Brick.

45-49: 1. Zeffi Angelikas, 2. Lisa Borne, 3. Dawn Wolford.

50-54: 1. Christine Lloyd, 2. Lisa Kuliczkowski, 3. Susan Lee-Miller.

55-59: 1. Gert Freas, 2. Patricia Butcher, 3. Hilary Goodman.

60-64: 1. Lynn Lubbe, 2. Kathy Hahn, 3. Agnes Rymer.

65-69: 1. Emily Grace, 2. Sharon Schanbacker.


Race calendar

Sunday, March 24

Ryan Strong 5K, 9 a.m., Fairless Hills. Contact

Saturday, March 30

Bookin’ for Lookin’/Bucks 5K Series 8-Miler, 5K, 1-miler, 8 a.m., Newtown. Contact


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About Wayne Fish 2348 Articles
Wayne Fish has been covering the Flyers since 1976, a stint which includes 18 Stanley Cup Finals, four Winter Olympics and numerous other international events.

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