Bucks runners shine at Philadelphia Distance Run

A happy runner (right) celebrates her finish in the Philadelphia Distance Run.

     The revival of the Philadelphia Distance Run continued on Sept. 17 when close to 2,500 striders participated in the classic race.

     Started way back in 1978, the PDR became the Rock ‘n Roll Half-Marathon for a couple decades before the 13.1-mile event switched back to its original format.

     The PDR remains popular with runners from throughout Bucks County, as almost all municipalities had at least one entrant at the race.

     Here were some of the top age-group performances (by town or club) from the big event (key: name, age group, time):


      Natala Balla, 25-29, 1:32.03; Tom Balla, 20-24, 1:25.50; Alex Santamaria, 45-49, 1:29.46.


      Cameron Erhardt, 30-34, 1:12.27; Marialena Pasciullo, 40-44, 1:52.22.

      >Bucks County Roadrunners Club

      Ian Smith, 60-64, 1:53.36.


      Joel Zimmerman, 25-29, 1:37.17.


      Andrew Johnson, 35-39, 1:20.44; Matthew D’Andrea, 30-34, 1:26.19; Andrew Keenan, 1:37.43.


      Wendell Smith, 50-54, 1:29.34.


      Michael Sock, 40-44, 1:44.42.


      Jim Larson, 60-64, 1:36.31; Chris Thompson, 40-44, 1:32.36.


      Joe Boyce, 60-64, 1:50.58.


      Pete Carideo, 60-64, 1:40.27; Andrei Lioshyn, 50-54, 1:37.51.


      Rob Gallagher, 55-59, 1:32.50.


      Lori Wade, 40-44, 1:41.16.


      Andrew Brenner, 20-24, 1:25.19.

      >Washington Crossing

      Matt Geib, 40-44, 1:35.33.


      John Wheeler, 55-59, 1:38.30.

      We would also like to add that an amazing streak continued at this year’s PDR: Richboro’s Mary-Pat Ezzo, 65, the only runner (female or male) to have competed in all of the races back to 1978, finished this year’s race (virtually) in 4:13.58. Congratulations to Ms. Ezzo.

      >A run for the Halloween season

      With October just around the corner, you’re starting to see signs of Halloween spirit, including some rather scary stuff on the front lawns of local homes.

      There are a bevy of this holiday’s spooky theme runs, including the RIP (rest in peace) 5K.

      This one is held in – wait for it – a cemetery.

      If that doesn’t get you in the trick or treat mood, we don’t know what will.

      It’s held in Laurel Hill, a suburb of West Philadelphia, on Saturday, Oct 7 at 5 p.m.

      Organized by the Friends of Laurel Hill, the Rest in Peace 5K Run is the premiere Halloween costume run and after-party in a cemetery at night in the region.

      Proceeds benefit the Friends of Laurel Hill, a nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to the preservation of historic Laurel Hill.

      Unique and challenging, the run winds through the headstones in Laurel Hill West. Participants and spectators alike are encouraged to attend in Halloween attire.

       Directly following the run, prizes are awarded for the best costume as well as to the winners of the run at an after-party that features food, free beer, and great music.

      Now in its 15th and final year, the run attracts hundreds of regional runners and spectators. In addition to being a good time, the race is also a very community-minded event, connecting runners, local businesses, and organizations together through fellowship, fitness and fun.

      For more information and to register, visit www.laurelhillphl.com/events/annual-events/rip-5k

      >Saying goodbye to a good friend

      Last week we were saddened to learn of the passing of our friend, David Anderson, whose lifelong love of running and racing was a shining example to all who knew him.

      Dave was a veteran member of the Mercer-Bucks Running Club and while he lived across the Delaware River in Pennington, N.J. he was always one of the first to volunteer for races over here, including the Bucks County Duathlon and the Kiwanis-Herald Sesame Place Classic.

      Back in the day, Dave was quite the runner at Tenafly (N.J.) High School, once running the anchor leg of a 4 x 400-meter relay race in 52 seconds. Later he graduated from Rutgers University and then earned his MBA from Rider University. In his running career, one of his proudest achievements was completing the 1995 New York City Marathon.

      His hearty laugh and passion for running will be missed.

      >Race calendar


      Andy Schram Memorial 5K, 9 a.m., Richboro/Tyler State Park. Contact www.runsignup.com

      Bridge to Bridge Relay (52 miles, 7-member teams), 6 a.m., Washington Crossing State Park. Contact www.runsignup.com

      Wounded Hero 5K, 9 a.m., Warminster Community Park. Contact www.woundedherorun.com


      Run Now, Wine Later 5K, 9 a.m., New Hope. Contact www.runnowwinelater5k.com

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About Wayne Fish 2446 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.