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Sunday, August 10, 2003 -- Morgantown, WV
Gene's Run For Special Olympics (MAGP #6) (iPO Event Id#: 5587) Story and photos by Tara Struyk

[Details] [Coverage]
[Overall Results] [Results by Class]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6]
Past Coverage: [1998] [1999] [2000] [2001] [2002]

Race Pic
Racing the scenic brick streets at Gene's
Gene's Place, a favored hangout known locally for its hotdogs, hosted the 16th annual Genes Run for Special Olympics Sunday in South Park. The race, which has been a Morgantown tradition since 1987, didn't stray far from its roots again this year. The race offered the usual mix of vigorous participants, fast racing and, of course, the near-stifling heat and humidity that seasoned competitors have come to expect from Gene's Run.

The eager pack of nearly 200 runners and walkers were off at 7p.m., winding their way past Morgantown High School towards White Park as the group broke apart and made its way in a long, steady line along the four mile course.

Race Pic
Not everyone was in a big hurry
Looping back toward the finish line, the experience of local road-race favorites Murshid Latif, 44, and Ed Frohnapfel, 47, worked in their favor, as they flew smoothly along the cobbled streets, driving towards the final mile of the race.

In the end, Latif pulled away from past winner, Frohnapfel to win in a time of 22:04.55. Frohnapfel was second in 22:20.49. Third place honors in the men's race went to Morgantown's Trent Casto, 20, who dashed down the final hill to cross the finish line in 23:06.54.

In the women's race, twenty-two-year-old Stephanie Meleady took top honors in a time of 25:04.94. University High's veteran cross-country runner, Maria Stover, 18, proved she had kept up with her summer training. She ran through the line with a strong finish in 25:48.91 to take second place honors.

Race Pic
Maria Stover takes second to Stephanie Meleady
Fairmont's Emily Corley, 14, enjoyed a hard-won third place finish in 26:45.09.

In the walking division, Terry Horn, 45, outdistanced the competition by nearly six minutes to finish in an admirable 31:45.63. Forty-five-year-old Peggy Thomas took top honors in the women's walk, covering the distance in 46:18:49.

As always, Gene's Place provided refreshments for the finishers, and tapped a keg or two for the over twenty-one crowd. As the evening wound down, it was clear that Gene's Run had once again been a success, providing fun and camaraderie for local athletes and proceeds for the Special Olympics.