Demonico, Moldoch Born to Run

BY JIM ROBBINS

FREEHOLD, NJ--Thanksgiving Day, a time our nation looks back on all our blessings, is also a forget-your-diet day and a pause from the norm to indulge in turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, plus all those other tasty dishes you or someone else has prepared. The day after the national holiday is the time to do something about all those ingested calories. So each of the 535 road racers, who finished the Born to Run 15th annual 5-mile race on a showery November 26, did just that, by burning up roughly 500 calories, according to Rules of Thumb by Tom Parker.

Dave Demonico of South River was the first calorie burner to cross the finish line at Court Street, next to the Hall of Records, from a changed, but not entirely new course, which also started at Court Street and zigzagged out to and back from Topanemus Park, at a respectable 26:19. "The Park was terrible--all mud, all water," said Demonico, winner of many shore area races including last spring's Fear the Pier 5K in Leonardo, when asked to comment on conditions. "Not bad for the weather--and for my lack of fitness," added the champion when asked if he was satisfied with his time. Earlier he stated that because of a recent bout with mononucleosis, his doctor diagnosed that he has a damaged valve, but that, with caution, it would be all right to race.

Point Pleasant's Barbara Moldoch, the '98 women's Born to Run champion, continued her winning ways by being first woman to finish (20th place overall), with her time of 30:38 being a little slower than last year's 30:12. "Challenging--reminded me a lot of cross-country--there were hills," offered Moldoch when asked about the course. Moldoch's best time for a 5-mile run was at the popular Spring Lake Five three years ago when she carded a 29:02.

Wall Township's Jack Lach was the first racewalk finisher at 46:18 and the women's racewalk champion was Anne Gonella of Point Pleasant at 52:06.

Bob Hyer, former president of the Freehold Area Running Club, the organizing club, with the assistance of his 4th grade daughter, Renee, awarded trophies to these winners and medals to the age-group leaders at the American Room of the American Hotel; the staging area. Hank Bailey, director, and still on the mend from a stroke three years ago, thanked Hyer and other members of the FARC and recognized the Marine Corps League for traffic control and L&M Computer Sports for results and finish-line activities.

Bailey then reminded all that the beneficiary is the Monmouth County Child Abuse Task Force and this event has contributed over $60,000 for its cause. "A hundred years from now, no one is going to remember how much money you had or what kind of car you drove, but some youngster will remember that you made a difference in his/her life," said Bailey. The wilted, appreciative, racing audience responded with a generous round of applause.