Young runners shine in annual July 4th Road Race


Weather conditions were ideal and two fun run participants set new course records at the 48th running of the Canton July 4th Road Race, held last Saturday morning at the Canton Town Club.

Jay Kelleher set a new fun run record. (Mike Berger photo)

Jay Kelleher set a new fun run record. (Mike Berger photo)

Jay Kelleher, 11, repeated as the champion in the two-mile fun run with a record time of 10:03. The top female finisher was Sarai Costello of Canton, and she too set a record with a blazing finish of 10:18.

In the five-mile race, Drew Kemelian of Canton won for the first time in five tries with a solid time of 32:55. Last year Kemelian finished as the best runner in the men’s 40-49 division.

On the women’s side, veteran road race participant Andrea Widberg was the top female finisher (33:49) for the third consecutive year, improving her time by more than a minute over last year’s finish. A Canton resident and teacher at the Kennedy School, Widberg has completed 44 marathons in her life, including the Boston Marathon this past April, which she finished in three hours and 40 minutes.

Overall attendance declined from 115 runners a year ago to 91 this year, with 60 runners competing in the five-mile race and 31 runners participating in the fun run. A four day-holiday weekend may have contributed to the lower turnout, said race organizer Joe DeFelice, who has started the race all 48 years since its inception in 1968.

The temperature at race time on Saturday was 69 degrees with low humidity and cloudy conditions. The race definitely had a family atmosphere with many parents and children and relatives either running, walking or cheering each other on. The youngest participant was 3-year-old Rose Doherty, and the oldest runner was Dolores Iannarone, 73, who received a special award for her participation in more than 30 July 4th road races.

This was the first year for Assistant Recreation Director Nick Pirelli, who joined the Parks and Recreation Department earlier this year. Recreation Director Janet Maguire and many youth volunteers assisted with the timing and coordination of the event.

See this week’s Canton Citizen for complete race coverage, including photos and a list of top finishers. Click here to order your subscription today.

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avatar Posted by on Jul 9 2015. Filed under Beyond CHS, Sports, Youth Sports. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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