The Manchester Running Company Club took home the Connecticut Cup and the $500 prize money that goes with it at the third running of the USATF CT Cup on October 20th at Hammonasset State Park in Madison. The MRC club runners dethroned EKG who had won the cup the previous two years.
It was a sunny and relatively warm Sunday morning at the 16th Annual Run for the Cove. The course was an out and back along roads within the state park; on the way out (first 1.5 miles) runners had a fantastic tail-wind but the return trip featured a brutal head wind that slowed times down significantly. Our estimates are winds of about 15-20 miles per hour for the 1.5 miles toward the finish.
The race for the Cup was a tw0-team race between EKG and MRC and the MRC pack of Jake Gurzler, Garrett Ash, James McKirdy, Steve Clayton and Chris McCormack knew that going in so the plan was to stay just comfortably ahead of EKG’s main pack.
From the gun, Chris Rosenberg of EKG took the lead while McKirdy hung right with him, Gurzler tucked in comfortably behind the leaders while Ash, Clayton, and McCormack kept in close contact with the EKG pack. At the mile mark the MRC runners fell into a comfortable pace while keeping a strong lead on the competition.
At the turnaround, Roseneberg had solidified his lead by about 12 seconds over Gurzler who moved into second, just behind Gurzler was Ash, Clayton, McKirdy and McCormack with Dunn and Loftus of EKG just off of McCormack’s footsteps. Each of the MRC five was within a few seconds of each other as they headed towards the finish and into the wind.
With such a strong head-wind there really was not a whole lot of movement any runner could make in the rankings as each were spread out just enough to make working together a formidable task and the order of finish went largely untouched.
Rosenberg was able to fight the wind and extend his lead to 19 seconds for the overall win in a course record 15:41 while Gurzler ran 16:00 to take second overall. Ash was 16:38 for third, McKirdy 16:45 for fourth, Clayton 16:47 in fifth and McCormack took seventh in 17:07 as Dunn of EKG was able to break up the pack and run 16:56 for sixth overall.
Overall it was a great race for MRC and EKG, each team missing some of its top performers and the unofficial difference between the teams was just 1:45 (cumulative time of the top five runners).
If you are interested in joining the MRC Club team you can find out much more information and register online by clicking here.