The humidity – which would clear out in time for Sunday’s parade – stuck around just long enough to make running conditions less than ideal at the Monticello Riverfest 5K.
But with clouds covering up the sun, runners were still able to take advantage of the fast, flat course, to the tune of a new record.
Brendan Sage, an 18-year old from St. Michael, won the race, finishing in a scorching time of 15 minutes and 20 seconds. That meant a course record for the rising college sophomore at South Dakota State University. His time was two seconds better than the record that had been previously set by Joe Mahoney in 2007.
“I know he’s a good runner,” said event organizer Dave Wik, about Sage. “But, that was impressive.”
Sage turned in a per mile average of 4:56 on his way to the record, which helped boost him to a 45 second advantage over Jackson Lindquist (University of Wisconsin-Superior), the second-place finisher from Thomson, Minn.
Monticello’s own Hunter Kopff finished the race in 16:40. The 21-year old college student was the third fastest finisher at the race. He wore one of Monticello’s new track and field jersey’s, which is emblazoned with an orange running shoe in memory of Phil LaVallee, last year’s Riverfest champion who was hit and killed while out for a run just weeks later.
Kopff was one of several college runners to finish high up on the leaderboard.
Amber Seidenkranz, who is set to be a college runner next year, at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, was the top female finisher at the event. Seidenkranz finished in a time of 18:53.92, earning 15th place overall.
“That was a good performance from her,” said Wik.
Seidenkranz finished 17 seconds ahead of former teammate, Amber Stoick, who came in with a 16th place finish.
Overall, 380 people crossed the finish line at the 2014 Riverfest 5K. Wik said that the event remains a race for all abilities, and added that he thought runners of all caliber enjoyed seeing some of the top-level runners that competed on Saturday.
“I think it’s fun for them to see these kids that can get out and go,” said Wik. “It’s even more fun when it’s our alumni.”
Wik himself got back on the course for the first time in a few years, as a personal tribute to LaVallee, who used to tease his coach about not racing him.
The past champion finished in a time of 19:39.
Other notable finishers included 52-year old Pete Kessler from New Hope finishing sixth with a time of 17:41 and 10-year old Dante Visci, of Elk River, finishing 44th with a time of 21:21.75.
In addition to the 5K finishers, Wik estimated that approximately 100 kids competed in the two ensuing fun runs.
Contact Clay Sawatzke at email@example.com