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Gabriel Ramos, Christa Benton tops at Hog Hustle 5K in Dunedin

Members of the Stingrays Triathlon Club run this month at North Shore Park while training for the Ironkids Triathlon, June 7 in St. Petersburg.


Members of the Stingrays Triathlon Club run this month at North Shore Park while training for the Ironkids Triathlon, June 7 in St. Petersburg.

Eighteen-year-old Gabriel Ramos of Largo won Saturday's Hog Hustle in Dunedin, covering the 5K course in 17:02. Christa Benton, a 25 of St. Petersburg, was second overall in 17:37.

In the master's ranks, Dennis Byron, 51, of Palm Harbor, took home the men's trophy (18:38) and St. Petersburg's Loretta Simeon, 43, was the women's winner (20:50).

Top local female finishers included: (age 9-under) Daniella Altamura, 9, of Oldsmar, 47:36; (10-14) Mary Margaret Mason, 13, of Safety Harbor, 25:06; (15-19) Lauren Whitaker, 18, of Clearwater, 33:18; (25-29) Jessica Lee, 26, of Dunedin, 23:46; (30-34) Kim Miles, 32, of Clearwater, 21:30; (35-39) Christine Moorby, 38, of South Pasadena, 23:39; (40-44) Sissi Hethershaw, 40, of Dunedin, 23:23; (45-49) Julide Burak, 48, of Seminole, 24:38; (50-54) Mary Stewart-Wong, 52, of Safety Harbor, 24:19; (55-59 Dee Anna Farnell, 55, of Belleair, 23:35; (60-64) Evelyn Arenella, 60, of Tarpon Springs, 25:57 and (65-69) Millie Hamilton, 65, of Madeira Beach, 27:59.

Top local male finishers included: (10-14) Tyler Lewis, 14, of Largo, 17:58; (15-19) Zach Hoge, 16, of St. Pete Beach, 17:55; (25-29) Andrew Horne, 27, of South Pasadena, 18:14; (30-34) Pedro Rodriguez, 30, of Zephyrhills, 18:03; (35-39) Scott Brane, 36, of Largo, 17:48; (45-49) Paul Graus, 45, of Kenneth City, 19:46; (50-54) Jim Baker, 52, of Largo, 23:09; (60-64) Phil Smolinski, 62, of Palm Harbor, 22:17; (65-69) Duncan Cameron, 66, of Palm Harbor, 20:34 and (70-over) Jack Keefe, 70, of St. Petersburg, 27:39.

Across the Bay: Several St. Petersburg runners won their age groups at Saturday's Secret Service Run in Tampa. Scott Winnier, 41, was the top male, finishing in 16:41. Juan Cortes, 33, and Abbey Skinner, 27, won the military/law enforcement divisions with times of 18:50 and 28:21, respectively. Other winners included: (35-39) Richie Taffet, 39, 19:20 and (55-59) Deborah Kazor, 57, 27:14.

Off-road action: The first Picnic Island Adventure Run of the season drew more than 700 trail runners on May 8. Kenneth City's Mark Benjamin, 20, was the first to cross the finish line in 20:07. Right behind him was 18-year-old Wes Reynolds and 32-year-old Marc Dannis, both of St. Petersburg, with times of 20:29 and 20:34, respectively.

Other top local males were master's champion Adriano Alcoz, 42, of Clearwater, 21:31; (45-49) Chris Jones, 45, of St. Petersburg, 24:02; (50-54) Kevin Cook, 54, of Seminole, 25:54.

Top local females included: (15-19) Penny Markuske, 18, of Largo, 26:37; (25-29) Whit Lasseter, 29, of Palm Harbor, 26:09; (50-54) Lauri Reynolds, 50, of St. Petersburg, 29:10; (60-64) Shirley Wheeler, 60, of Largo, 49:03.

Just for kids: School will be out in a couple of weeks, just in time for a series of youth-oriented triathlons. World Triathlon Corporation, which sponsors the classic Ironman in Kona, world-class 70.3 races all over the globe and the popular Iron Girl running series, has a new event geared for youths: IronKids.

The eight-city series kicked off May 2 in San Diego and makes its next stop June 7 in St. Petersburg. IronKids events feature three distances in the swim/bike/run format for juniors (age 6-8), intermediates (ages 9-11) and seniors (ages 12-15). Go to for more information.

Open Water Swim and Transition Clinic: Youth triathletes ages 6-15 can head to Spa Beach from 8:30-10 a.m. Saturday and get some coaching from the USA Triathlon-certified staff of Tampa Bay Tri-Sports.

Bring swim goggles and running shoes. Topics include prerace preparation, swim safety, open-water entry, open-water swimming skills, open-water exit, swim to transition 1 and bike to transition 2.

Swimming: St. Petersburg master's member William Specht swam in the U.S. Masters Swimming Short Course Yards Nationals at Clovis North High School May 7-10 in Fresno, Calif. Specht, who swims in the 50-54 age group, placed first in the 100 and 200 backstroke (setting two national records) and first in the 200 butterfly. Bob Beach, another St. Pete Master's member, swam in the One Mile Open Water National Championship at Millerton Lake, Clovis, Calif., and placed second in the 75-79 age group.


coming up


• The Ride of Silence, 7 p.m., Publix at Curlew Road and Alt. 19, Dunedin. Visit


• West Florida "Y" Runners Club, 6 a.m. at City Hall Plaza in Clearwater, 7 a.m. at John Chestnut Park in Palm Harbor. Contact Michael Weiss (727) 644-7702,

May 30

• Madbeach Mini Triathlon, various distances, Archibald Park, Madeira Beach. Contact Susan Daniels, (727) 580-1896,

• PurpleStride Tampa Bay, 7:15 a.m., Veterans' Memorial Park. Contact Tracy Connolly (727) 744-4026,

• Running 4 the Law, 5K race and 1-mile fun run/walk, 8:30 a.m., Crescent Lake, St. Pete. Call (727) 823-7474

Gabriel Ramos, Christa Benton tops at Hog Hustle 5K in Dunedin 05/19/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 6:08pm]
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