TAMPA— Holly Ochs, a 30-year-old from Milwaukee, flew to Florida for a vacation with a friend who wanted a running partner.
Sunday she left Tampa for Miami with a course record and first-place finish in the final race of the Gasparilla Distance Classic, the 8K.
"I was thinking I should just stay with them," Ochs said of the other women at the starting line. "But then I realized I could go faster, so I did."
Ochs, who ran at Wisconsin-Whitewater, also set a personal record with her time, 30 minutes, and was the 10th-fastest finisher overall.
Jacki Wachtel, 32, of New Port Richey, finished second in the women's race at 31:20, and Bradenton's Rae Ann Darling Reed, 38, was third (34).
Ochs' running buddy, Ted Shue of Glendale, Wis., ran in all four weekend races (15K, 5K, half marathon and 5K) and came in 17th in the 8K in 32:02.
Lutz's Oscar Orozco, 23, finished first overall with a time of 26:42, also a course record. The Leto graduate and USF junior, who said he wasn't fast enough to be recruited out of high school and now runs with a club team, set a personal record in Saturday's 15K as well.
"I kind of buried myself in Saturday's race and let it all out on the road and tried to just do the best I could (Sunday)," he said.
"I was thinking about just going out with just with the lead pack and trying to conserve. I felt pretty good, took it out, ran my own race and pushed the pace."
Dan Monteau, 48, of Gainesville, finished second in 27:37, and St. Petersburg's Nat Glackin, 29, came in third at 28:10.