As Alan Grant pulled onto Ocean Ave at just 34 minutes and 9 seconds, he felt good.
Although Grant later said he thought this year’s race was a few seconds slower than last year, he was still nearly 30 seconds ahead of the second place finisher. Not only was this Grant’s fourth Run Seal Beach 10K win, it was record-breaking attendance for the race itself.
“I feel fortunate that I have been able to stay healthy and injury free and in good enough shape to be able to do it,” said Grant, the owner of a Z Pizza business on Main Street in Seal Beach. “A lot of it is luck; you could get injured training or over train or get sick.
“This year I was ready for the race. I would’ve beat my last year’s time of 33.56, but it’s so much harder when you are by yourself. There is less urgency as opposed to when battling another guy and pushing yourself to the limit.”
Grant said he had pizza for dinner the night before the race and then fasted until after his winning run.
Mayor Mike Levitt and Chief of Police Jeff Kirkpatrick were able to start the race right on time at 8 am. The sea of people was quite a sight to behold. I know that I certainly had a great time at both the start and finish lines keeping the crowd going. Dennis Kaiser of the Sun kept up a rolling color commentary at the finish line to encourage everyone to push their hardest.
Race Chairman, Marc Loopesko said, “It all really came together well. The start line went off without a hitch, and we got our largest race buttoned up before noon on Saturday. It was an incredible effort by our hundreds of volunteers.”
It looks to be the largest proceed year by quite a bit as well. In 2010, the Run Seal Beach organization gave away $110,000 and this year is on track to give away even more. The mission of the organization is to give back to our local Seal Beach community in the areas of fitness and recreation. This broadly encompasses the school district and a wide interpretation of recreation, as many sports teams, bands and organizations can attest to.
Treasurer Elizabeth Kane knows it was a banner year. “We had more than 5,500 runners, walkers and children registered by the time we concluded registration on Friday night. We saw slightly fewer late registrations this year, but overall, our numbers were up across the board.”
Awards for the new Bill Ayres Memorial “Fastest Runners from Seal Beach,” will be presented in front of City Council a 7 p.m., April 11.
For Kathleen Phair, it was her second time winning the 10K as the fastest Seal Beach female resident. She and her husband waited quite a while in the increasingly glooming morning for the plaque and they were both very excited about the award.
Medals were flying as medal MC Jo Dawson of Myriad of Ideas and Studio Café SBTV-3 kept the crowd informed of the latest race results. For all results, just go to sealbeachrun.com.
Seth Eaker is the secretary of the board of the Run Seal Beach organization, a past president of the Seal Beach Chamber of Commerce and founder of Black Marble Consulting, LLC.