KIRKPATRICK, VAUGHN
TAKE CHRISTMAS
CITY CLASSIC

BY BRIAN J. SCHAFER

BETHLEHEM, PA--Lehigh University grad student runners invaded the l3th annual Christmas City Classic 5-Mile Run and garnered the top spots at the December 9, 2000 event.

Ryan Kirkpatrick easily outdistanced training partner Nate Harkins, also a LU grad student, to win the men's division with a fast 24:38. The impressive time is considered one of the faster times turned in on this course, which has a difficult hill in the last mile. The same course is also utilized for a summer 5-mile run known as the Christmas City Challenge. Harkins was timed at 25:53 for second place. Budd Coates, a former event champion who is fitness director at nearby Rodale Press, was third this year in 26:25. Coates was the top Masters and at age 43 continues to turn in top performances despite competing against "Open" runners l5 to 20 years younger.

Jordan Vaughn, another LU grad student, missed her goal of breaking 30 minutes by just one second, but it was good enough for the win as she turned back a top local field. Jen Malavolta was second in 30:l9 with Kathleen Jobes in third at 30:56.

Some notable age-group performances were run by Alex Norelli (27:27) a junior at Emmaus High School, 62-year-old Herb Townsend (33:38), and 6l-year-old Bernadine Pongracz (45:42). And at age 71, Wally Wright (44:02), the Johnny Kelley of the Lehigh Valley, continues to forge ahead despite some occasional knee problems. The husband-wife duo of Rich and Lori Adams also had strong showings. Rich, 52, won the 50-59 group in 32:l5, while Lori, 45, easily won the 40-44 class in 33:33.

Race director Bruce Haines, owner of the Aardvark Sports Shop, reported that there were 203 finishers. Sponsors included Aardvark and Finish Line. Volunteers were provided by Aardvark staff members, Liberty High School cross-country team, Emery Track Club, and the Lehigh Valley Road Runners Club. The race benefits youth running in the Lehigh Valley.

MALE

Overall

1. Ryan Kirkpatrick 24:38
2. Nate Harkins 25:53
3. Budd Coates 26:25

l8 and Under

l. Alex Norelli 27:27
2. Dorian McDonald 28:27
3. Zach Holt 28:28

l9-29

l. Craig Souders 28:49
2. Creighton Faust 30:l5
3. Brad Smith 32:24

30-34

l. Mark Jobes 27:05
2. Mark Hanna 30:28
3. Steve Budlong 3l:46

35-39

1. Mark Gerbers 26:44
2. Joe Cresko 26:53
3. Dennis McCarthy 3l:54

40-44

1. Vinnie Landolfi 29:42
2. Steve Gerhard 30:l3
3. Eric Jones 32:28

45-49

1. Jose Desantos 30:46
2. Ian Birky 33:30
3. Tom Vreeland 34:13

50-59

1. Rich Adams 32:15
2. Bob Wischnia 33:29

60 and Over

1. Herb Townsend 33:38
2. Robert McDonald 40:06

FEMALE

Overall

1. Jordan Vaughn 30:00
2. Jen Malavolta 30:19
3. Kathleen Jobes 30:56

l8 and Under

1. Emily Abraham 41:49
2. Jennifer Larson 42:09

19-29

1. Michele Sosnowski 32:38
2. Debbie Karwacki 34:59
3. Melissa Newhard 35:09

30-34

1. Ingrid Gerber 34:42
2. Julianne Schwabach 40:02
3. Kristen McLaughlin 40:09

35-39

1. Lori Wetzel 38:15
2. Leslie Baga 40:41
3. Lori Scott 43:16

40-44

1. Lori Adams 33:33
2. Theresa Derobert 36:22
3. Beth Smith 39:29

45-49

1. Carol Piccarelli 42:48
2. Catherine Akridge 43:00
3. Michele Litke 43:18

50-59

1. Sherry Schrammel 39:11
2. Kathy Koberlein 41:10

60 and Over

1. Bernadine Pongracz 45:42
2. Nancy DesGerennes 48:09