Mary McLean, Contributing Writer
Although the day started with drizzling rain and gloomy skies, runners from all over the country gathered at the starting line of the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K April 13 to celebrate its 20th anniversary.
More than 25,000 runners registered for the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K this weekend. Registration for the highly anticipated event started a year in advance.
Richmond resident Erin Ford, 25, was enthusiastic about the rain at the event.
“I wasn’t planning [on] running. But when I came to the 10K and saw the weather, I couldn’t help but run,” Ford said. “The gloomy weather may not seem like good weather for running, but it’s actually great.”
She finished with a time of 1:27:38.
The race began after the end of the mile-long Virginia529 Kids Run for children ages 5 to 12.
The main event, the 10K, began at 8:30 a.m. The last runners crossed the finish line around 1 p.m. The race had three winners: Philo Germano, Tim Young and Jack Bruce.
Germano crossed the finish line first, running 29:34, as the fastest male runner. Young came in second place in 29:45 and Bruce came in third in 30:08.
Bethany Sachtleben finished as the fastest female runner with a time of 32:39, 15th place overall.
The Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K also featured a “Dash for the Cash” contest, in which one runner was randomly chosen and given a two-mile head start. The person selected for the contest wins $2,500 if they cross the finish line before any other runner.
VCU marketing professor Brian Brown successfully crossed the finish line in 28:54 to win the “Dash for the Cash” competition.
“It was definitely surreal running by myself, with no other runners within sight,” Brown said. “Especially with a camera in my face the whole time.”
Brown ran in honor of his late sister-in-law who lost her life to cancer.
The event’s main fundraising partner was the VCU Massey Cancer Center. It is in the top 4% of cancer centers nationwide and treats patients with many forms of the disease, including rare cancers for which treatment is usually difficult to find. The Massey Cancer Center conducts research into cures and less harmful drugs to fight tumors. The money raised by runners this weekend goes toward this research.
Registration for the 2020 Ukrop’s Monument 10K began on April 15 and also seeks to raise money for the Massey Cancer Center.