Despite steady rain and gusting winds, all 26 runners in Central Valley Academy’s 2014 Mott Marathon Challenge successfully completed the full 26.2 miles. Ted Liberty finished with a time of 4:04:53. Jeff Monsour crossed the finish in 4:08:03. Top girl finishers were Sadie Lincourt at 5:34:50 and Teigha Ward at 5:36:26.
The event is both a physical and a philanthropic challenge to the graduating class. Following a long tradition, only seniors are eligible to run and the race’s founder, English teacher Jim Mott encourages every runner to seek pledges to raise money for an important local cause.
This year’s runners ran as MaryKatherine’s Sweetpeas, raising $600 for the American Heart Association in honor and in memory of MaryKatherine Maxson. She was the daughter of Central Valley teacher and cross country coach Charles Maxson.
The weather was less than ideal, but it could have been worse Mr. Mott said.
“We had a steady drizzle and some wind, but the temperatures we okay. Last year, we started out sunny and warm, but the temperature fell and it poured. In other years, it was too hot,” he said.
The weather seemed to have little effect on the runners. Liberty’s time was 20 minutes off the event’s record of 3:45 set by Pat Squire in 2009. Monsour arrived 12 minutes late for the start and actually covered the distance in 3:56:38, just 11:33 off the record.
Although the marathon is timed, it is not a race. It is a test of personal endurance and commitment. Organizers and faithful spectators stay late into the night to cheer on every competitor.
“Many of the students have never run anywhere near this far. They step on the track to prove something to themselves. They can take great pride in their accomplishment,” Mr. Mott said.
Runners and times are as follows:
|24.||Kevin Coleman, Jr.||M||8:02:27|