Track Club Widens Its Lead In State Grand Prix Series

It’s said that many hands make light work, and in the case of the Greater Derry Track Club (GDTC) many feet can make your lead in the New Hampshire Grand Prix team running series a bit wider.

The local track club had nearly 50 runners show up to compete in the fifth of the seven series races – the Epsom Old Home Days 4-Miler on Sunday, Aug. 10 – and the GDTC bumped its lead up from a rather shaky eight points to a bit more comfortable 34 points with its team showing at that race.

The New Hampshire Grand Prix is an annual road running racing series for the running clubs of New Hampshire. The clubs compete against each other in a series of road races spread throughout the racing season. In addition, runners who complete every race in the series in a given year are granted “Granite Runner” status.

Through the first three Grand Prix events of 2014 in April, May, and June, the GDTC held a modest 16-point advantage over the Gate City Striders of Nashua (458-442). And after four races had been completed, the local track club’s lead had been whittled down still further to 606-598 over the Gate City crew. But the GDTC still grasped the upper hand en route to the August race at Epsom Old Home Days.

At the Epsom event, the GDTC notched 166 points while the Gate City Striders tallied 140, hence the local club’s series lead moved up into somewhat more comfortable territory at 772-738 over the Nashuans.

Track club member Amy Bernard was the first female finisher at the Epsom event in a time of 24 minutes and 22 seconds. She would then go on to repeat as the female winner of the 35th Londonderry Old Home Day/ Lundgren 5K Road Race this past weekend (see related story page 13).

GDTC participants – mostly from Southern New Hampshire with a few from northern Massachusetts – have thus far included Derry residents Charlie Bemis, Paul Doe, Nick Silva, Rebecca Noe, Caryn Pepin, and (the club’s president) Jim Peters, and Londonderry residents  Mike Dufour, Joe Carroll, Rob Barry, Bob and Maureen Knepp, and Eldon and Sachiko Burkinshaw.