East Hampton High School’s boys and girls cross-country teams, as well as Shelter Island’s, turned out for the 42nd running of the Great Bonac 5 and 10Ks at the Springs Firehouse Monday, and, predictably, the 5K’s top 20 largely comprised those teams’ members, who have been running all summer.
Kal Lewis, 17, of Shelter Island, a 4:15 miler, led the way, topping the 5K’s field of 164 finishers in a quick 16 minutes and 24.2 seconds.
Barbara Gubbins, who is pushing 60 but continues in the van in her age group (and who won the five-race Sayville series outright this summer), likewise left the 10K field in the dust, in 41:27.0. She’ll run Boston in April with her daughter, Megan, both having qualified in Southern marathons within the past year — Megan with a 3:10 and her mother with a 3:28.
Kevin Barry, East Hampton’s boys cross-country coach, brought two score runners with him, most of them sophomores, one of whom, Evan Masi, was the runner-up to Lewis, in 18:06.
“We’re good, but young,” Barry said in reply to a question.
Diane O’Donnell, the girls’ coach, has a far smaller roster, around a half-dozen in all, but, with Bella Tarbet, Ava Engstrom, and Emma Hren, all seasoned runners, mixed in with four or five up-and-comers, including Dylan Cashin and Ryleigh O’Donnell, who are eighth graders, the team ought to give their opponents a run for their money.
Cashin recently became the youngest winner of Body Tech’s “pump and run” contest, bench-pressing 35 pounds 109 times before setting out on a 1.8-mile beach run between Atlantic Avenue and Indian Wells Beaches and back. Her net run time was reduced by more than five minutes because of her weight-lifting prowess, assuring her an easy victory over the runner-up (and Body Tech’s owner), Mike Bahel.
Back to cross-country, because of “glamping” (glamorous camping) on the Bonackers’ home course at Cedar Point County Park, the girls and boys’ season opener with Mount Sinai is to be held Tuesday at East Hampton High School.
Barry said he’ll lay out a 2.5 to 3-mile cross-country loop around the school’s perimeter, to end, he hopes (provided he can get the turf field that day), on the track, whose scoreboard will show the times.
The teams are to run in a meet at Red Creek Park in Hampton Bays, at one in Rhode Island, and at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx later this season. Otherwise, the boys and girls’ meets will be at Sunken Meadow State Park.
The state’s Class B champion, Sarah Conway of Mount Sinai, is to run in Tuesday’s meet here, Barry added.
As aforesaid, it was the 42nd year for the Great Bonac races, founded by Howard Lebwith. Harriet Oster, who recently turned 77 and who, because of a knee ailment, did not run between last November and July, is presumably the champion when it comes to attendance. Oster, who placed 103rd and topped the 70-plus age group Monday in 31:54, has only missed one.