KINGSTON, Jamaica – Road race veterans Rupert Green and Arieta Martin were once again at their very best as they secured the male and female 5K titles at the Running Events 5K at Emancipation Park in New Kingston on Sunday August 16.
Green who represented the Double Marchers club, won in a time of 16 minutes and seven seconds, beating arch rival Shawn Pitter of Body by Kurt who stopped the clock at 16 minutes and twenty-five seconds. Ronique Williams who was unattached came in third in 17 minutes.
For Green the race was a tough one with Pitter. “I had to work very hard for this victory. Pitter had a huge lead on me and I had to chase him all the way to the 3k, but once I got in front I maintained my pace and the lead to the finish.”
Martin, who was also representing “Double Marchers” Running Club, stopped the clock in 20 minutes and fifty seconds followed by Karlene Blagrove second in 21 minutes and fifty-nine seconds with Ina Daley third in 22 minutes and sixteen seconds. The 5K walk for the men went to Lenworth Hunter while Paula Sinclair took the female equivalent.
Proceeds from the event will go towards the Wortley Home for Girls, and according to Board Chairman Raphael Sangster the initiative is a welcome one at this time.
“On June 29 we had a fire which destroyed our dorms at the girls’ home and it was the idea of Mr. Alfred Francis to stage a 5K to raise funds to assist in the rebuilding of the dorms. So I must say thanks to the Running Events team for their kind gesture and we hope the success of the event will go a far way in helping us to get back on track at the Wortley Home for Girls,” said Sangster.
Race Director Alfred Francis believes the event was well received by the over nine hundred participants who came out to support the cause. “Even though August is a tough month to stage road races, we decided we had to put this event on to assist the charity and we are pleased at the turn out and proud of the initiative.”
Green was using the 5K as part of his preparation to meet the qualifying mark for the Marathon event at next year’s Rio Olympics. The veteran runner will now focus on races in Trinidad, Guyana and Suriname as he continues racing toward his goal of qualifying for the Olympic Marathon.
In the meantime, Martin had high praises for the course which she was doing for the first time. “I am pleased with my effort today, I am just coming off an injury and I executed my race plan properly. The course was a tough one with a lot of inclines but I enjoyed testing myself out there today,” she exclaimed.
The Running Events 5K has also attracted overseas participants, an area they are hoping to improve upon within the local road race circuit. Keisha Bowla-Hines of Trinidad & Tobago was pleased with her first road race on Jamaican soil.
“My family came to Jamaica on holiday and I went on the Running Events Ltd website and saw that they had a race so I decided to compete and I must say that it is a fantastic event for a worthy cause,” said Bowla-Hines