Tag Archives: Phil Richert

Jonny Wilson Wins 35th 4 on the 4th Road Race in Bridgton

Jonny Wilson on his way to winning the 35th 4 on the 4th.

Chris Harmon (#1924), Richard Klauber (#1625), and Jonny Wilson (#1516) at the start.

(Bridgton ME)  Jonny Wilson from Falmouth (ME) and the University of Richmond won the 35th 4 on the 4th road race on Monday morning at Bridgton in 20:19.

A record-setting 1849 runners finished the race on an overcast morning with temperatures close to 70 degrees at the muggy 8AM start.  In typical Maine weather fashion, the temperatures rose into the 80s by early afternoon before a rowdy thunder/lightning storm appeared in mid-afternoon only to be followed by very pleasant temps in the upper 70s later in the afternoon.  The good news was that the warm weather and the showers didn’t show up until after the race was over.

The first five finishers (Jonny Wilson, Richard Klauber, Christopher Harmon, John Vallo, and Sean Livingston) ran from the turn onto Main Street past The Magic Lantern with comfortable cushions between each other.

Jonny’s lead was a little difficult to gauge because the police escort came down part of the hill before turning off.  Once the escort left it was clear that Jonny (red shirt senior on this year’s Spider track team) was not going to be caught by Richard Klauber.  Last year’s winner, Phil Richert (19:58), was past The Magic Lantern before another runner appeared at the top of the hill.

Pickles Lajoie in 6th with plenty of competition closing fast.

The final positioning for places 6-11 (Pickles Lajoie, Silas Eastman, Tim Even, Erica Jesseman, Pete Bottomley, and John Barbour) was settled after the Magic Lantern.  Pickles had 6th going past me but had to run for his life after Reny’s to keep that spot.

Tim Even made up at least three spots after he passed by me.

My wife and I always are on hand at the start to make our winner selections.  She had Phil Richert last year!  This time she went with Richard Klauber who finished second.  I went with Tim Even.  He finished fifth last year but this time lost contact with the top five and had to sprint in the last hundred yards to get 8th.

John Vallo (4th), Pickles Lajoie (6th), and Tim Even (8th) all were connected to the University of Southern Maine’s track team this past season.

Christopher Harmon (3rd) was a senior at Maine this year and part of their track program.

Sean Livingston (5th) won this race in 2005 and 2006.  The 42-year-old from Barrington, Rhode Island coaches cross country at Roger Williams University in Bristol (RI).

Silas Eastman with Erica Jesseman gaining ground on the left.

Silas Eastman (7th) is only 16.  He was 6th last year and 7th the year before as a 14-year-old.  He’ll be a senior at nearby Fryeburg Academy in the fall.

Erica Jesseman (9th) was the top woman finisher this year, last year, and in 2006.  The former UNH runner dropped nearly a minute off her time (23:06) last year to this year (22:10).

Pete Bottomley (10th) finished ninth last year.  The 49-year-old started running as a senior at Oxford (ME) Hills and then went on to make the cross country team at Maine.

John Barbour (11th) is a 57-year-old who qualified in 1988 and 1996 for the Olympic Marathon Trials.  Recently he started an indoor track team at Manchester-Essex High school in Manchester, Massachusetts.  He lives in Gloucester (MA).

Kristin Barry was top Maine woman runner at 2010 Beach to the Beacon 10K

Kristin Barry (12th) helped run the Cheverus track program this school year.  She is 37 and the mother of two.  She was a very successful runner at Dartmouth before going to Georgetown to become a lawyer.  Last year she was the 10th woman finisher at the Beach to Beacon 10K and the first female Mainer to cross the finish line.

I am not a professional photographer but like the proverbial blind squirrel I do happen into an acorn occasionally!  I do not charge for any of the pictures you see in this entry.  I will send pictures via email to anyone interested.  My email address is in the CONTACT at the top of the blog page.

(Any of my statistical information and caption information is unofficial.)

Henry Osborn (11)

Mark O'Horo (7)

Tim Even

Tim Even and John Barbour

Pete Bottomley (right)

Erica Jesseman

Leave a comment

Filed under Bridgton

Phil Richert Wins Bridgton 4 on the Fourth Road Race

Part of the crowd of 1757 finishers at the Bridgton 4 on the Fourth road race.

(Bridgton ME) Steamy Bridgton was the scene of the 34th annual 4 on the Fourth road race.

Temperatures were in the 80s even at the 8AM start time from beside Food City.

Winner Phil Richert runs alone to victory in the 34th 4 on the Fourth

For the third straight year, the winner was a newcomer to the event.

I like to size up the runners as they prepare for the start to see if I can pick the winner.  After the race starts, I move over to in front of the Magic Lantern to get a great view of the runners cruising down Main Street and to see how I did.  I suspected that there were ringers in the race but chose the wrong one.  My wife, however, guessed Phil Richert and had the winner.

For the second straight year, the eventual winner ran Main Street without company.  The first competitive race was for fifth between Tim Even and John Bechshaw and Tim eventually won while John faded to seventh.

The race now attracts over 1500 runners and has come a long way from 1977 when it was started.  In that starting year, the race was held in DECEMBER with a course that included Chadbourne Road and Upper Ridge Road.  That race ended at the house of the organizer and hot cider was served to the 28 participants.

Later the starting point shifted to the golf course and the ending to Highland Lake.  The hassle of getting runners to the golf course caused it to be shifted to downtown Bridgton in the 1980s where it has stayed.  USA Track & Field have certified the course.

The event is very well organized from beginning to end.  There are still folks who think that they can drive along Main Street just before the runners show up.  Two cars tried it this year and judging by the number of stops they were forced into and the verbals they got, I doubt they’ll make the same mistake again.

Bowman Schneider (aged 7) was one of the 1757 finishers.

One change I noticed was that cones ran down the middle of Main Street giving the runners just half of the road.  With 1757 finishers, I’m not sure that was a great idea.

That high heat brought out health concerns.  You never worry about the elite runners because they have trained enough so that they could probably keep the same pace for another four miles.  It’s the folks who are trained but the heat gets them or the untrained that should be standing beside me rather than risking their lives in front of a large audience.  I did hear a couple of ambulances as I was leaving the race, before all had finished, and pray that there wasn’t a fatality.  I did see one scary elderly gentleman in the race look as if he was going to go down at any minute since he was running at about a 45 degrees angle.  Fortunately, it looked as if a family member was near him in case he headed for the pavement.

I did some online research on the top finishers after seeing their summer residences listed beside their names.  I just wanted to know a little more background.

Winner Phil Richert is from Minnesota and went to Wisconsin = Stevens Point.  The 23-year-old ran track there.  What’s he doing in Bridgton, Maine on a hot July 4th?  The Portland Press Herald found out that he has a summer job at Arcadia National Park in the gift shop on Cadillac Mountain.

Phil’s 19:58 winning time was quite a ways from that of record-setting Colin Peddie.  The 3-time winner ran the course in 18:46 in 1987.  Colin still holds a number of Maine state track records set while he was at Cheverus High School.

Noah Graboys, Douglas Whichard, and Richard Klauber finish 2nd, 3rd, and 4th

In second was Noah Graboys, who just graduated from New Trier High School in Illinois. If you want a favorite for next year, how about this kid?  He finished eighth in 2009.  It surprised me to see an elite runner like Noah have such long hair.  If he returns next year with short hair, he’s my favorite.  Noah’s brother, Sam, finished 11th and he’s just 15.  Both boys are again connected to Camp Wigwam in Waterford for the summer and have run the Bridgton race several times each.

Third was Douglas Whichard who finished 15th at Bridgton as a 16-year-old in 2006.  Doug is from California and is connected to the track program at UC Santa Barbara.

In fourth was Richard Klauber.  This was Richard’s first try at Bridgton.  He’s from Thomaston CT and now runs for Quinnipiac College.  He’ll be a junior.

The first truly local runner to show up was Stoneham’s Tim Even.  Tim is 21, attends the University of Southern Maine and runs track there.  He has been running Bridgton while he was at Fryeburg Academy and had been stuck in the teens for the past three tries.  This time, though, he put together his best time and best finish.

Erica Jesseman finishes first for the women and 14th overall

Scarborough’s Erica Jesseman finished 14th overall to pace the women finishers for the second time.  She also was the best woman in 2006.  She just graduated from UNH and starred in track.

(All information should be considered unofficial.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Bridgton 4 on the Fourth