In the world of non-runners (yes, believe it or not, such people do exist), the name Harlem evokes a rich heritage of arts and culture.🎭🎶 In the New York runners’ lingo, Harlem is synonymous with HILLY🌋. The legendary Harlem Hill in Central Park? VERY hilly. The Percy Sutton 5K, which traditionally kicks off Harlem Week? Possibly the HILLIEST race on the NYRR calendar!
Full disclosure: I don’t like hilly courses, and this was my first Percy Sutton 5K. I flew back from Italy🇮🇹 last night for my race debut after realizing this is a club points race (indeed the 6th out of 11). Not surprisingly, as an uninitiated Harlem runner, I had a burning question: which one is the toughest of the two hills shown on the elevation chart? (For the record, it’s the second hill.)
Hilly or not, our team loves this race. 38 Flyers were among today’s 5,667 finishers, and we won 3 individual awards (Fran Breslauer, Deb Saat and Francesco Presutti), and 2 team awards (the 60+ Women and 60+ Men Teams). After the finish several of us ran downtown along the Summer Streets route. Congratulations 🎉 to the award winners and to the entire team!
The team was led by our extraordinary Abe Lee, who finished the race in 18:38 (that’s a round pace of 6:00 min/mile and an AGP of 76.23%). Abe was followed by Edvard Major, who pulled off a spectacular 19:22 finish (pace 6:14, AGP 72.22%). Francesco Presutti finished third for the team in 19:55 (pace 6:25, AGP 81.25%) and won his age group’s third place.🥉 Deniz Saat was fourth with a time 19:57 (pace 6:26). Tim Decker was fifth with 20:06 (pace 6:28, AGP 75.9%). Our open men team was 21st today and is now 5th in the Open Men B standings.
🏆Arlyn Apollo led the women’s team with a time of 23:33 (pace 7:35, 10th AG place, AGP 70.97%).
I spoke with Arlyn after the run. She was happy with her race.
“Runners have to adjust expectations for this hilly 5K,” she said. “The best part (always) is seeing fellow NYF out there. A bonus is that today’s race nicely coincided with the new start of Summer Streets on 125th.”
For those who do not know her, Arlyn was sidelined for most of 2022 due to foot surgery. “Injuries happen to everyone,” she said. “We all have setbacks and comebacks. With some good luck (and PT when needed), we’ll be back before we know it.”
Arlyn started doing local fun runs at age 7. “I ran in high school (one of my teammates was NYRR CEO Rob Simmelkjaer), and college. I peaked in my first-ever marathon in 1997 (3:16, as a NYF) so no more PRs for me, but I continue to chase AG milestones. Running means everything to me: health, sanity, and friendship. Thank you NYF!”
Yumi Morishige came second in the women’s team with a time of 23:51 (pace 7:41, 8th AG place, AGP 74:13%). Lisa Konorty was third for the team with 24:55 (pace 8:02, 5th AG place, AGP 74:42%). Deb Saat came fourth with 26:43 (pace 8:36, AGP 73.94%) – how fascinating that both mother and son Saat were among today’s top 5 Flyers! – and in the process she won her age-group’s second place.🥈Sandra Chung was fifth with 27:22 (pace 8:49). The open women team was 17th and is now 13th in the Open Women A standings.
Special congratulations go to Fran Breslauer, who won her age group 🥇once again with a time of 33:54 (pace 10:55, AGP 75.49%). This marks Fran’s 7th race win this year! 🎉
Two teams won an award today:
• The 60+ Women Team, including Lisa, Deb and Lis Shlansky (29:12, pace 9:24), came 2nd, and is still 2nd in the club standings.
• The 60+ Men Team, including Francesco, John Whitfield (20:20, pace 6:33, 6th AG place, AGP 80:29) and David Gaines (26:29, pace 8:32) came 3rd and is also still 2nd in the club standings.
Both teams are doing very well this year and, with only 5 club points races to go, they have good chances to win a 2023 team award again. Go teams!
Kudos also to the following teams:
• The 40+ Men Team (Abe, Edvard and Francesco) finished 11th and is 12th in the club standings.
• The 40+ Women Team (Arlyn, Yumi and Lisa) finished 9th and is 9th in the club standings.
• The 50+ Men Team (Francesco, Tim and John) finished 6th and is 6th in the club standings.
• The 50+ Women Team (Arlyn, Yumi and Lisa) finished 5th and is 5th in the club standings.
• The 70+ Men Team, represented by Delton Mace (28:41, pace 9:14, 5th AG place) and Felix Alicea (32:44, pace 10:33), did not have a minimum of three runners and did not score points. It is 5th in the club standings.
• The 70+ Women Team, represented by Fran and Jeanine Hartnett (37:36, pace 12:06, 4th AG place), did not have a minimum of three runners and did not score points, but is still 3rd in the club standings.
The team’s full results can be found at: https://results.nyrr.org/event/23HARLEM/teams/NYF.
Finally, this race counts also for the 2023 Flyers awards.🏆 The member standings are still not available online, but I understand that might change soon!
Well done, Flyers!
-Francesco P, NY Flyers Blog Race Reporter, #NYRRStaff