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Saturday, July 31, 1999 -- St. Marys
Ring the Bells Again 5K
Story and photos by Don Parks

[Coverage/Recap] [Pic Set 1] [Pic Set 2] [Pic Set 3]
[Overall Results] [Results by Class]

Andrea Ford
Andrea Ford doesn't seem bothered by the heat
On Saturday, July 31st, the town of St. Marys held a 5K run and walk as part of their 150-year town celebration. A unique course was laid out that would take the runners past many of the historic sites around town and along the scenic Ohio River. A large crowd gathered on the typically warm and muggy mid-summers morning, but at least the race route had relatively few hills.

While the race promoted a "tour of historical St. Marys", there were obviously several runners intent on getting from start to finish as fast as possible. As racing got underway, it was 16-year-old Cole Carpenter who shot out to the front and held a comfortable lead through the first mile. A group of three, Mike Taylor, Josh Weekley and Joe Wharton, chased in what appeared to be a battle for second.

Larry Taylor
Mike Taylor paced his way to victory
By the halfway point in the race, Carpenter's pace began to slow. Meanwhile, the more experienced legs of the 43-year-old Taylor slowly moved him ahead of the chase group as he patiently closed the gap on the leader. Weekley held a solid third while Wharton's pace seemed to drop off.

Before they reached the two mile mark, Taylor moved himself into the lead and it was now Weekley who was reeling in the slowing Carpenter. Soon it was Weekley chasing Taylor to the finish with Carpenter fighting to hang on to third. In the final stretch, Taylor was able to keep enough distance on Weekley to take the win in 17:59. Weekley came across second in 18:11, Carpenter third in 18:34 and Wharton coasting in for fourth at 19:07.

Larry Taylor
Josalyn Bailey knows the joy of reaching the finish line
The women runners could only watch as Leslie Molinoro raced to the front and held her lead to the finish at 22:58. Taking second and third were Brett Platt (24:32) and Alicia Jennings (25:07), respectively.

Many more runners and walkers, young and old, made their way through the town to the finish line. The participants all cooled off as the streets and sidewalks began to fill with festival attractions and vendors. Soon the awards were handed out and with or without a trophy, everyone went home a winner on another historic day in St. Marys.