O'Grady, Kroshus Win Cox Sports Marathon at 2011 Cox Providence Rhode Races
Lonergan, Piazza Capture Eident Sports Half Marathon Today
Providence, RI – Tom O'Grady and Emily Kroshus were the big winners today at 2011 annual Cox Providence Rhode Races in Providence, RI.
Nearly 7,000 runners competed in the fourth annual Cox Providence Rhode Races. The weekend long event featured four races, highlighted by the Cox Sports Marathon.
Under bright sunny skies and a 60-degree temperature, O'Grady was the first to cross the finish line at in front of a large crowd of spectators on Exchange Terrace in the heart of downtown Providence. The 25 year-old O'Grady, of Latham, NY, won his first-ever marathon in a time of 2:31:25. The winning time was his personal best and was a new course record.
O'Grady, who won the 2011 Olekask Lumber Spring Half Marathon in April in Westfield, MA., needed a bit of assistance as he crossed the Cox Sports Marathon finish line. He recovered in time to be greeted by his fourth month-old son Connor, who was wearing a shirt that read Daddy's Future Running Buddy on the front.
"It was a tough race," said O'Grady "My goal was to hold back in the first half and see how it unfolds. "I was pleased with how I did. I was hoping to finish under 2:3I, but I was hurting the last two miles. This (race result) puts me in a good position to reach my goal (of 2:30). One step at a time. I am closer to my goal. I am really happy to win this race."
Trailing O'Grady was Jeremy Adler of New York, NY. The 2011 Cox Sports Marathon runner-up completed the course in 2:34.23. Nick Menzies, 31, of Jamaica Plan, MA, was third in 2:34:55. Menzies captured the 2010 Amica Marathon in Newport last fall.
Emily Kroshus was the first female to cross the finish line of the 26.2-mile race. The 28 year-old from Boston, MA took the title in 2:53:23. Her smile was wide as she crossed the finish line. Kroshus looked as though she had completed a 5k rather than a 26.2 mile race.
"I used this race as a training run," said the Harvard graduate student who is gearing up for the Ottawa Marathon in a few weeks. "I wanted to keep a steady pace and not go crazy or push too much. "
Kroshus, a member of the Boston Athletic Association, last won a marathon in 2005 when she placed first at the Philadelphia Marathon.
"I haven't won in a while. This is a pretty great feeling," she said. "I had a good race. This was a beautiful course. It showed off Providence show nicely. Great event."
Lisa Kaplan, 40, of Watertown, MA, was the runner up behind Kroshus. She finished in 2:55:29. Warwick's Jacquelyn Jackman, 33, was third in 3:03:05.
Warwick's Robert Jackson, 28, was the top marathon finisher from Rhode Island. Jackson crossed the finish line in 2:42:37. He placed fifth overall.
Eric Lonergan, winner of the half marathon at the 2009 Cox Providence Rhode Races, took the title again today. The 25 year-old former standout runner at North Kingstown High and Rhode Island College, Lonergan won the Eident Sports Half Marathon today in 1:09:22 and set a course record in doing so.
The North Kingstown resident and member of the Providence Cobras led from the start and ran alone for 13.1 miles.
"The weather was beautiful and the course was great," said Lonergan. "My goal was to be consistent and stay comfortable. It was tough because there wasn't anyone around me to work off of. I used the bike guy (lead cyclist) to help me. He was great."
New York's Zachary Kudlak and Connecticut's Brennan Galloway finished second (1:12:45) and third (1:14:18) respectively, in the Eident Sports Half Marathon today.
Sarah Piazza was the top female in the Eident Sports Half Marathon. The 26 year-old Yale graduate student who resides in New Haven, CT., recorded a winning time of 1:22:35.
"It was a beautiful course. I had a great time out there today. This was a great race," said Piazza.
Katie Chaput of Mount Hermon, MA was the runner-up in 1:23:11. Boston's Cathy Parker placed third overall for the women in 1:24:26.
Runners, ranging in age from 13-78 years-old, came from as far away as Austria, Puerto Rico, Canada and Great Britain to compete in today's event that showcase Providence and its surrounding communities.
The 2011 Cox Rhode Races kicked off on Saturday with the Shape Up RI 5k and the inaugural Munroe Dairy Kids Marathon at Roger Williams Park.
Providence's Alan Bernier took the Shape Up RI 5K title in 16:15. Warwick's Issy Nielson was the top female with a winning time of 19:58.
Cox Communications is the Title sponsor of the Cox Providence Rhode Races. Charitable partners include Cox Charities New England, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Team in Training, American Cancer Society, Lung Cancer Alliance, Melanoma Foundation and the March of Dimes.
About Eident Sports Marketing
Eident Sports is a full-service event management and sports marketing company based in Providence, Rhode Island. Eident has several properties in the region, ranging from turn-key sporting events to sponsorship sales alliances with key partners. For more information on Eident's events and offerings, please visit www.eidentsports.com