PATRICK NTHIWA, WINNER OF BRIAN’S RUN 10K
IN 28:37.
DENNIS SMYTH PHOTO
Nthiwa Wins; Gbrer Gorgis Attracts Attention
at Brian’s Run

BY DAVID BLOCK

WEST CHESTER, PA--The Brian’s Run 10K entrants had fast finishing times, but it wasn’t due to the ideal 56-degree December weather, nor was it due to them pushing themselves. This year, the course was a tad short of 10K because the lead vehicle accidentally skipped a few blocks. “These things happen,” said Brian’s Run race director Dick Fitch. Another problem was that a few cars tried to go through parts of the traffic-free race course, but the police stopped them. “I think all in all it was a good race,” said Fitch. “The weather was great for the December 5 event unlike last year.” In December of ’03 the 26th running of Brian’s Run was postponed to the spring due to a blizzard.

Bill Stahl of Colorado said that he was the only person who ran the course last year when the race was cancelled. “I flew all the way from Colorado to run this race.” There were no race directors to start the race, no pace vehicle, no police officer to direct traffic. He ran by himself and made a few wrong turns. Although he has run this race for over 20 years, it felt odd to run alone. “I’m used to seeing so many runners in front of me so I never memorized the course.” This year Stahl had a different problem, running with a broken toe. Stahl finished the race in 41:35. He hopes to bring his time down next year.

 

GENET GBRER GORGIS, 10K WOMEN’S WINNER OF BRIAN’S
RUN IN 32:55.
DENNIS SMYTH PHOTO
Dick Fitch has referred to Stahl as the race’s representative in the West, “Brian’s Run West” because of his efforts in raising money for the event every year. “I’ve been running this race since ’79 when I went to the University of Pennsylvania,” said Stahl. “I keep coming back every year because I like the cause.”

Brian’s Run was created in 1978 after high school sophomore Brian Bratcher became paralyzed in a football scrimmage. The race was meant to be a one-time event to defray the Bratcher Family’s medical expenses, but Brian insisted that the race take place every year provided that other people in the West Chester community who are worse off benefit.

The overall ’04 Brian’s Run winner was Kenyan native Patrick Nthiwa who clocked 28:35. Although Nthiwa trains in West Chester, he never ran the course before. “I liked the course,” said Nthiwa.

The race started with five runners--Nthiwa, Aurelio Handanga (2nd, 29:12), Paul Mwangi (3rd, 29:47), Michael Digennerd (4th, 29:56), and Michael Mykytok (5th, 30:09)--vying for the lead.

After three miles, Nthiwa broke from the pack without anyone challenging him. “I had to push the pace, it was too slow,” said Nthiwa.

Throughout the ’90s and 21st century, Mwangi ran Brian’s Run, but he never won.

In the women’s field, Genet Gbrer Gorgis won in a time of 32:55. After the race, the Ethiopian native, who trains in the Bronx (NY), talked more about her 15-month-old son, Nubue, back home--whom she thinks about all the time--instead of her win. Unlike most elite runners from other countries who compete in the USA, Genet Gbrer Gorgis has no manager to book her into races. “I have to do it all myself,” she said. “I couldn’t get management because my times are too slow. Maybe next year I can get someone.”

Finishing second was Lyubov Denisova in 32:59 and third was Tatyana Chulakh in 33:33.

To learn more about Brian’s Run log onto www.briansrun.org.

 

ANDREW LOBB, BRIAN’S RUN 5K WINNER IN A TIME OF 17:11.
DENNIS SMYTH PHOTO
MALE

10K

Overall

1. Patrick Nthiwa 28:37
2. Aurelio Handanga 29:13
3. Paul Mwangi 29:48
4. Michael Digennerd 29:58
5. Michael Mykytok 30:10
6. John Garton 30:19
7. David Berdan 30:35
8. Ryan Walsh 31:49
9. Matthew Sandercock 31:58
10. Darryl Brown 32:23

 

WOMEN’S MASTERS WINNER LORRAINE JASPER
(39:11).
DENNIS SMYTH PHOTO
Masters

1. Jeff Devlin 32:32
2. John Kelly 32:47
3. Jeffrey Painter 34:03
4. Joe Breslin 35:21
5. Kevin Forde 35:30
6. Steve Noone 35:44
7. Brian Driscoll 35:46
8. Lee Kauffman 35:51
9. Dave Anderson 35:55
10. Joseph Reighard 36:38

5K

Overall

1. Andrew Lobb 17:11
2. Jason Leonard 17:43
3. John Lacolla 17:56
4. Chad Gordan 18:17
5. Jeffrey Butterworth 18:59
6. Eric Dimarzo 19:09
7. Jerome Menendez 19:13
8. Danny Poolich 19:18
9. Luke Rogers 19:27
10. James Beury 19:54

 

AT AGE 72, JOHN SHULTZ PULLED DOUBLE-DUTY AT BRIAN’S
RUN, FINISHING THE 5K IN 28:59 AND THE 10K IN 57:48.
DENNIS SMYTH PHOTO
FEMALE

10K

Overall

1. Genet Gbrer Gorgis 32:55
2. Lyubov Denisova 32:59
3. Tatyana Chulakh 33:33
4. Tatiana Belovol 34:57
5. Rachel McGinnis 35:32
6. Emily Kroshus 36:03
7. Vicki Cauller 36:17
8. Becki Wells 36:33
9. Kimberly Saddic 37:15
10. Shannon Grady 37:29

Masters

1. Lorraine Jasper 39:11
2. Jeanmarie Eschenbach 40:10
3. Leah Whipple 41:08
4. Donna Bushey 41:36
5. Cheryl Bellaire 41:55
6. Deb Townsend 42:29
7. Beth Howlett 42:57
8. Theresa Kauffman 43:03
9. Marianne Krupa 43:06
10. Mary Matthews 43:23

5K

Overall

1. Andrea Macartney 22:32
2. Kathleen Phayra 22:47
3. Julie Matthews 22:49
4. Jessie Jandavitz 22:50
5. Jackie Merrick 23:03
6. Audrey Ting 23:49
7. Marybeth Bitles 23:57
8. Imogem Johns 24:03
9. Andrea Rubinoff 24:37
10. Lisa Sene 24:40