The 39th Annual Spring Lake Five was held on Saturday, May 23, 2015 in the Borough of Spring Lake, New Jersey. It was a cool crisp morning ideal for the runners with a brisk wind out of the north for the 8:30 a.m. start. Some 12,500 runners were registered for the race and they lined up along Ocean Avenue for the start. Runners started to arrive bright and early to secure their position on the starting line. Like clockwork the National Anthem was sung and then a moment later and just about precisely 8:30 A.M the canon went off for the start. The runners headed north along Ocean Avenue into the north wind for about a mile but with the large crowd it was barely perceptible except for the leaders.
They then made their way into Belmar and around Lake Como and then back into Spring Lake and through the downtown on Third Avenue where throngs of spectators cheered the runners on and stood in awe as the huge field made its way toward the Spring Lake and around it past the historic Saint Catherine’s Church and then back to Ocean avenue for about a half mile sprint to the finish.
Kids Races Photos
Five Mile Photos
Breaking the tape for the men and first overall was Andrew Brodeur of Bethesda, Maryland in a time of 24:42. He held off a late charge from Mark Leininger of Colts Neck, New Jersey who finished close behind in a time of 24:50 and then Brian Quilty of Blackwood, New Jersey in 25:13 to round out the top three. For the women breaking the tape was Sarah Cummings of New York City in a time of 27:44. She was followed by Marisa Cummings of Spring Lake, New Jersey in 28:45 and then Nicole Strand of Robbinsville, New Jersey in 29:52 for the top three women. All the finishers received distinctive finishers medals which they proudly wore through the day.
There were 10,211 recorded finishers making the event possibly the largest 5 mile race in the country, The event marks the traditional start of the summer season at the jersey Shore and is an opportunity to re connect with friends after a long cold winter. It is also a memorable day for many who celebrate many occasions. For Lou Taylor of Spring Lake it was his running the race with over 30 of his children and grandchildren at age 85 and appropriately wearing bib number 85. Lou was a past Mayor of Spring Lake and he and his family have run the race many times starting with the very first one 39 years ago..
Just about every running club in the state of New Jersey was represented and they proudly donned their distinctive singlets and uniforms. After the race there were many celebrations and parties at private homes in the area as well as an official, post-race party at many Bar Anticipation in lake Como where many runners gathered to share their times and accomplishments.
On Friday evening before the race several thousand kids participate in the kids races of various distances along Ocean Avenue. Certainly many of them will return in coming years to run the 5 miler.
The summer racing season has just begun and there is plenty to look forward to so check out lots of upcoming events on the RunCollege Race Calendar.