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ANOTHER COURSE RECORD AT THE 2017 “BRENDAN’S HOME RUN”™

Held Sunday, 18 June 2017 in Belmont, MA
(Story by Casey Grant, Belmont MA; Photos by Fred Field, Cumberland, ME)

2017 Brendan's Home Run"Brendan's Home Run™” 5K Road Race/Walk celebrated its sweet 16 anniversary with another successful 5K race/walk. Once again solid crowds and warm comfortable weather made a perfect match in this year’s annual Father's Day community venue, all in support of the worthy charities of The Brendan Grant Foundation™.
2017 Brendan's Home Run
The 5K runners once again exceeded expectations, led by some of the top runners from the New England region. The news of the day was headlined by the women’s course record being smashed by Rosa Moriello of Brighton MA, with a new course record of 16:32, beating the previous course record by almost 45 seconds set in 2016 by New Zealander Laura Nagal at 17:15. The men’s course record remained intact, set in 2016 by Louis Serafini of Brighton MA at 14:32.

The 2017 overall champion was Mitchell Klingler of Cold Water Michigan with an impressive time of 15:10. David Melly of Brighton MA captured the men’s 2nd place at 15:17, with the men’ 3rd place being taken by Jonathan Phillips of Boston at 15:20. Second place in the women’s division went to McKenna Coughlin of Boston at 18:39, and 3rd went to Ravenna Neville of Boston at 18:57. We’re proud to have some of the top runners in New England competing in Brendan’s Home Run.
2017 Brendan's Home Run
Brendan's Home Run continues to attract top runners in the metro Boston area, and the organizers and participants salute all of these great athletes, and the legendary stature they enjoy among the Belmont faithful. The times for all the 5K runners are available from www.CoolRunning.com. This year, the top three male and female winners are grouped into the DerKazarian Circle of Champions, in honor of the late Alan DerKazarian whose idea it was to provide prizes for these top athletes, and who family continues to be a Presenting Sponsor. Overall, the fastest finishers in the 2017 5K race in the male and female categories were:

1. Mitchell Klingler, Cold Water MI, 15:102017 Brendan's Home Run
2. David Melly, Brighton MA, 15:17
3. Jonathan Phillips, Brighton MA, 15:20
4. Dan Vassallo, Peabody MA, 15:33
5. Nick Lemon, Brighton MA, 15:50
6. Chris Stadler, Boston MA, 16:40

1. Rosa Moriello, Brighton MA, 16:32
2. McKenna Coughlin, Boston MA, 18:39,
3. Ravenna Neville, Boston MA, 18:57
4. Flora Berklein, Boston MA, 19:59
5. Rebecca Trautsel, Winchester MA, 20:07
6. Jacquelyn Cilley, Arlington, MA, 21:262017 Brendan's Home Run

In another great Home Run tradition, fastest parent/child tandem 5K times were clocked. Enhancing youth development and fostering positive parent-child relationships is a guiding principle of The Brendan Grant Foundation. On this basis, Brendan's Home Run always acknowledges the fastest parent-child tandems for the day. For some Father’s, there is no better way to spend Father’s Day. Awards are provided in this category, and the top finishers for the parent-child teams with combined times were:
2017 Brendan's Home Run
1. Barry & James Kitch (Belmont) had the fastest combined time of 39:06
2. Flora Berklein (Boston) and Daniel Kleinman (Brookline) at 45:09
3. Jason and Jared Rife (Belmont) at 45:43.

While these top-notch runners were busy burning up the 3.1 miles, the spotlight fell on the kids’ races on the oval at the Belmont High School track. For many this event is the highlight of the day, with speedy youngsters racing around the track to the classic music of "Charge of the Light Brigade" and finishing before the fastest 5K adult runners return.
2017 Brendan's Home Run
Every child received a ribbon for participating. The champions of the day for the 6-8 year old race were Elias Cantisano and Quinn Loose, while the 9-12 year olds had Elizabeth Amaratunga and Adam O’Shaughnessy as the fastest on the track. While these were the fastest runners, all of the children who participate are awarded a ribbon and each wears a2017 Brendan's Home Run race bib with the number “1”, Brendan Grant’s uniform number retired by the Belmont High School varsity baseball team. Meanwhile, with similar salute, none of the 5K runners use bib #1.

Continuing the event’s legacy, awards were presented to the fastest runners in each of the 12 age and gender categories, and spirits were high among the crowd of almost five hundred runners. Hundreds more participated in the non-competitive walk, as well as the 400m youth races on the track for children ages 6-8 and 9-12. As a recap of the 5K race, the following are the top three winners in each gender and age bracket, each of whom were awarded a medal for their accomplishments (note: the top three male and female overall finishers are excluded from these lists):
2017 Brendan's Home Run
19 & Under Results - Women 5K Run
1 Francesca Celi Kitch, Belmont MA, 23:27
2 Dana Lehr, Belmont MA, 23:59
3 Lucy Hamer, Belmont MA, 24:26

20-29 Results - Women 5K Run
1 Flora Berklein, Boston MA, 19:59
2 Sarah Gerver, Somerville, MA, 21:34
3 Katherine Kukova, Brighton MA, 22:01
2017 Brendan's Home Run
30-39 Results - Women 5K Run
1 Jacquelyn Cilley, Arlington, MA, 21:262017 Brendan's Home Run
2 Martha Compton, Stoughton MA, 21:34
3 Rebecca Windt-Pearson, Anchorage AK, 22:08

40-49 Results - Women 5K Run
1 Rebecca Trautsel, Winchester MA, 20:07
2 Karin Lehr, Belmont MA, 22:45
3 Rebecca Loose, Belmont MA, 22:56

50-59 Results - Women 5K Run
1 Joanne MacIsaac, Belmont MA, 27:25
2 Alice Rushforth, Belmont MA, 27:42
3 Elizabeth Brown, Belmont MA, 29:05
2017 Brendan's Home Run
60 & Over Results - Women 5K Run
1 Linda Jennings, Tewksbury MA, 23:27
2 Cheryl Brown, Belmont MA, 30:43
3 Kwan Kew Lai, Belmont MA, 32:39
2017 Brendan's Home Run
19 & Under Results - Men 5K Run
1 James Kitch, Belmont MA, 16:44
2 Zack Tseng, Belmont MA, 17:00
3 Stephen Carvalho, Belmont MA, 18:40

20-29 Results - Men 5K Run
1 Nick Lemon, Brighton MA, 15:50
2 Chris Stadler, Boston MA, 16:40
3 Louis Serafini, Brighton MA, 18:58
2017 Brendan's Home Run
30-39 Results - Men 5K Run
1 Dan Vassallo, Peabody MA, 15:33
2 Chris Heuisler, Belmont MA, 18:50
3 Benjamin Spaulding, Medford MA, 19:26

40-49 Results - Men 5K Run
1 Martin Kronbuegel, Belmont MA, 17:54
2 Pekka Stenholm, Brookline MA, 17:562017 Brendan's Home Run
3 Christopher Leitz, Watertown MA, 18:31

50-59 Results - Men 5K Run
1 Andy Kinney, Sudbury, MA, 19:44
2 Robin Dawson, Waltham MA, 20:53
3 Dean Murphy, Belmont MA, 21:07
2017 Brendan's Home Run
60 & Over Results - Men 5K Run
1 Jack Fahey, Belmont MA, 21:01
2 Richard Campbell, Newtonville MA, 21:21
3 Dick Lehr, Belmont MA, 22:55

Additional race information is available at the Foundation's dedicated webpage for "Brendan's Home Run".

Brendan’s Home Run would not be the well-oiled event it has evolved into over the past sixteen years without the dedicated corps of volunteers who do everything from setting up tents, to registering entrants, to slicing watermelons. This small army of volunteers takes care of the many details that result in the efficient execution of top notch road race in a very short time frame. Rain or shine, they are undeterred from the mission of making the event the best it can be.
2017 Brendan's Home Run
Of course, Brendan’s Home Run also owes much of its success to the support of its sponsors, led by our Presenting Sponsors – The Alan & Isabelle DerKazarian Family, Fitness Together Belmont, and Belmont Savings Bank, as well as the events’ Contributing Sponsors – Champions Sporting Goods, Belmont Wheelworks, Belmont Lions Club, Waltham Family YMCA, Moozy’s Ice Cream, and Greater Boston Running Company. Their backing helps Brendan’s Home Run optimize its fundraising potential, and helps The Brendan Grant Foundation to provide college scholarships and likewise support its other initiatives that benefit the youth of local area.2017 Brendan's Home Run

A sweeping range of individuals and organizations helped make this year’s race/walk the great success that it was. In addition to the afore-mentioned sponsors, significant in-kind donations were also provided by: General Mills (Yoplait), WT Phelan Insurance, and multiple others. Numerous outstanding raffle prizes were awarded including lots of tickets to the Boston Red Sox, Boston Bruins, and other great Father’s Day gift venues. A special tip-of-the-hat goes to all who donated these prizes and helped make it a special Father’s Day for all the raffle prize winners.
2017 Brendan's Home Run
Another reason the event went smoothly was because of the dependable support provided by the staff of the Belmont Department of Public Works, as well as important traffic control from the Belmont Police Department and the standby assistance of the Belmont Fire Department. The individuals that directly helped make the day a success number close to 100 people, and they are too many to mention by name here. We are deeply appreciative for their important volunteer efforts. A special salute is extended to the young people of the community who directly assisted, such as members of the following BHS sports teams: Baseball, Softball and Wrestling teams.

Brendan's Home Run traverses an officially measured and certified course in accordance with the requirements of the USA Track & Field Road Running Technical Council (Certification Code: MA14012JK©). The accredited 5K course is primarily flat, features plenty of shade, and allows the best runners to capture excellent times. The race starts and ends at the Belmont High School Track, and the course loops out through the 2017 Brendan's Home RunWinn Brook neighborhood and back upon itself. This means that halfway into the walk, the fastest runners begin passing the walkers, while the slower runners ultimately finish at about the same time as the walkers.

2017 Brendan's Home RunAs has been the case in past years, the walkers departed on the 5K course at 9:30 am with a half hour head-start before the runners. This year the driving rain challenged the walkers, and it was inspiring to see the dedicated walkers who participated undeterred. As many of them will tell you, they are out on the course when the runners pass them and really have the best seat in the house to watch the 5K race. Information about last year's successful 2016 race/walk is available by clicking here.

Brendan's Home Run is a cornerstone of development efforts on behalf of The Brendan Grant Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to enhancing youth development, and carries out its mission through clinics, mentoring programs, field/facility enhancements, and scholarships given annually to three graduating high school seniors. The foundation, and its various events such as the 5K race/walk, honors the memory of Brendan Grant, the 19-year-old Belmont baseball player who was fatally injured in an outfield2017 Brendan's Home Run collision during a Senior Babe Ruth game in June 2001. Brendan was a three-season athlete in the BHS Class of 2000, where he was the captain of the wrestling and baseball teams. In 2001, he was the starting third baseman during his freshman year for American International College.
2017 Brendan's Home Run2017
Perhaps the most visible foundation project is the rebuilding of the Belmont High School varsity baseball field where Brendan played his last game. Also of note are the annual scholarships that provide financial assistance to qualified seniors from Belmont High School who will be attending an institution of higher learning after graduation. The scholarship is awarded to a senior member of the varsity baseball, softball and wrestling teams’ that demonstrates the same positive spirit and leadership skills - both on the field and in the community - for which Brendan was known. The Brendan Grant Foundation is proud to have provided scholarships to 40 previous recipients. Those who cannot participate in Brendan's Home Run but wish to contribute to The Brendan Grant Foundation may send donations to P.O. Box 184, Belmont, MA 02478.

Whether you were a runner, walker, volunteer, contributor, or a supporter in spirit but unable to attend, it was another great event with lots of fun for a worthy cause. We're already excited for next year and hope to see you on Father’s Day 2018!

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