For 30 years, San Antonio's Annual Rattlesnake Run has been considered one of the toughest 5-mile races in Florida.
Saturday, 18-year-old Wes Reynolds of St. Petersburg showed the running community he could hang with the best when the high school senior finished second in a field of 393 with a time of 27:34.
The top spot went to Javier Beuzeville, a 20-year-old from Tampa, with a time of 26:25. The fastest woman was Jacki Wachtel, a 29-year-old from Port Richey, with a time of 29:48.
Other top local age-group winners included: (female age group, 45-49) Lisa Kothe, 48 of Clearwater, 34:45 and (60-64) Bonnie Theall, 63 of Dunedin, 47:45.
In the men's ranks, (55-59) Jon Feltham, 58 of Clearwater, 37:03; (60-64) Albert Wieringa, 62 of St. Petersburg, 32:32; (65-69) Duncan Cameron, 65 of Palm Harbor, 33:54.
Melody Janson, a 45-year-old from St. Petersburg, also turned in a notable performance with a 34:58, the sixth-fastest women's time.
In the mile, James Welch, 15 of Seminole, finished second with a 6:41 while his father, James Welch, 44, finished fourth in 6:59.
Liz Sylves, a fitness and nutrition expert from St. Petersburg, just returned from the Duathlon World Championships in Rimini, Italy, where she competed with Team USA and ran the best 10K of her life. The 30-year-old had to rent a bike, but placed 33rd out of the 55 women in her age group, 176th overall, with a time of 2:44:35.
Tarpon Springs' Dean Cosgrove realized his goal of becoming the only person to complete 19 consecutive Ironman World Championships last week in Kona, Hawaii. Cosgrove, 48, finished in 14:18, almost an hour faster than his 2007 time, even though the race conditions were the most difficult in a decade.
University of Florida TriGator Alexandria Lechner of Clearwater was the fastest female at last weekend's Longleaf Triathlon in New Port Richey. The 20-year-old placed fifth overall with a time of 54:11. Her teammate, Ryan Repp of Palm Harbor came in second in his age group. The 22-year-old finished in 55:00.
University of Florida sophomore Ali Crabb, 19, ran 21:07 for 6km (5:39 per mile) at the NCAA Division I Pre-national Cross-Country Meet in Terre Haute, Ind., on Oct. 18.
The mildly hilly, all-grass Terre Haute course is built for cross-country racing, unlike the golf course venues normally used at the college level. Crabb's UF team, ranked 11th in the nation, finished fifth overall, the highest for the school at a national level meet.
Every year the Disney World Marathon selects 10 Florida resident applicants, by merit, to represent the state as elite runners.
The athletes are provided entry into the marathon, hotel accommodations, meals at Disney restaurants, as well as their choice of theme park tickets for themselves and guest.
This year's selection for the Jan. 11 marathon includes Christa Benton, 24, St Petersburg; Denise Skinner, 53, St. Petersburg; Keith Sawayda, 45, Clearwater; and Melanie Peters, 24, St. Petersburg, who will return as defending women's champion.
Just for kids
The Youth Triathlon Series wrapped up its six-race season recently in Tarpon Springs.
Winning girls included Kaci Anderson, 5 of Largo; Emerson Quilty, 6 of St. Petersburg; Olivia Rovin, 10 of St. Petersburg; Annika Smith, 11 of Clearwater; Courtney Smith, 12 of St. Petersburg; Sarah Sykes, 13 of Largo; Jordan Snodgrasrass, 14 of Largo; Patricia Corsetti, 15 of Seminole.
Winning boys included Asher Rovin, 6 of St. Petersburg; J.T. Hockin, 10 of Largo; Will Voitlein, 11 of Oldsmar; Kyle Deschenes, 12 of Largo; Cody Sandford, 13 of Clearwater; Philip Malecot, 16 of Seminole.
Terry Tomalin can be reached at email@example.com or (727) 893-8808.