WASHINGTON — Fourteen runners braved 80-degree heat on Sunday, Aug. 7 to run over the challenging hills of the town.

The recreation committee, led by Peg Hobbs, held its annual Washington Challenge 5-kilometer road race and one-mile fun run.

Luke Baker, 13, crossed the finish line first in the fun run with a time of 12:26. He was followed by Gus Letowski, 11, who finished in 16:45. Baker and Letowski are from Washington. Wilder Stone, 4, of Bangor, rounded out the top three. It was Stone’s first road race, and he finished in 30:16.

From left, Ron Paquette, 81, and Donnajean Pohlman, 71, of Albion. Photo courtesy of Joanie Rhoda

In the 5K, the top finish went to Josh Cutler, 32, of Washington. He completed the tough, grueling 3.1-mile course in 22:17. The first female finisher was Allison Montgomery, 35, of Washington, whose time was 30:47.

T-shirts were given to each runner, and medals awarded to the overall and age-group winners.

Ron Paquette, 81, and Donnajean Pohlman, 71, of Albion won the 70-and-older category. They are lifelong runners who come to Washington each year to run the race. They just returned from a Viking cruise to Portugal the day before and, despite jet lag, continued their tradition of running the Washington Challenge 5K.

Another noteworthy, and quite remarkable, tradition of theirs is, each year, running the Mount Washington road race in New Hampshire — an eight-mile run with only one significant hill. Pohlman has completed it 16 times. Paquette has completed it an incredible 39 times without skipping a year. He will be inducted into the Mount Washington Hall of Fame, which honors runners who have run up 300 miles or more.

There was a raffle following Sunday’s Washington Challenge race in which most participants received gift certificates from a local business or homemade goodies such as maple syrup or strawberry pie.

The following are the race results:

5K — 1, Josh Cutler, 22:17; 2, Peter Heslam, 24:28; 3, Matt Stone, 25:06; 4, Donald Mansius, 27:17; 5, Philip Street, 28:05; 6, Allison Montgomery, 30:47; 7, Linda Fu, 34:43; 8, Anthony Lee, 38:20; 9, Donnajean Pohlman, 41:35; and 10, Ron Paquette, 41:47.

One-mile fun run — 1, Luke Baker, 12:26; 2, Gus Letowski, 16:45; 3, Wilder Stone 30:16; and 4, Erin Rhoda 30:17.

MaineStay Media/VillageSoup sports staff can be reached by email at sports@villagesoup.com 

filed under: