By Ted Waddell
CALLICOON July 29, 2003 The 2003 5K River Race was held Saturday morning as a benefit fundraiser for the Delaware Youth Center in Callicoon.
The fifth annual race attracted a field of 91 competitors of all ages. The first race in 1999 drew 35 runners, while last year about 105 people signed up to run along the river side course.
All the volunteers are what makes this a success every year, said Alice Newell, community center board member and race coordinator.
Tom Manza of Rock Hill was the first runner to cross the finish line.
The 47-year-old started his running career when he entered the Amendolas 5K Rumble about six years ago.
I did fairly well, so I thought Id get into this, he said after catching his breath. Especially in mid-life, you look for some excitement and ways to challenge yourself.
It really did the trick, added Manza, who is the president of the Sullivan Striders Running & Walking Club. Ive met a lot of friends and really gotten into the competition.
Manza prepares for races with speed workouts during the week, repeating the one-quarter to half-mile sprints to get my speed and wind up.
I did a solid workout on Tuseday, and then took it easy for the rest of the week, he said of getting ready for the 5K River Race.
What was it like to cross the finish line in first place?
It always feels great to win, Manza said. You feel on top of the world.
Virginia Layton, 40, of Equinunk, Pa. was the first woman to cross the finish line.
She ran for a while as a child, and as an adult has been running for about 10-12 years.
I run to stay in shape, and it adds to my health and longevity, she said.
Layton, who works for Northeast Sports in Honesdale, Pa., firmly believes in cross-training: mountainbiking, kayaking and running. Once a week, she does a speed workout with a local cross country team trying to get the younger girls to help me pull my feet along.
Its a nice race because its cool right by the river, she said of the River Race course. When you get tired you can look at the scenery and forget . . . you get into a rhythm and go.
What was it like to win?
Always good, always good, Layton replied.
Note: Please see complete race results in Fridays issue.