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New England Walkers Newsletter
September 2000

Click to Get $20 Off Your 1st Pair Of Walking Shoes?
Click to Get $20 Off Your 1st Pair Of Walking Shoes?

Our championship season

The biggest event on our New England racewalking calendar, the National One-Hour and Two-Hour Championships, will be held on Sunday, Oct. 1, at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute track in Worcester, MA. This is our 12th consecutive year of hosting this major event, which customarily draws top walkers from around the country as well as local walkers of all abilities.

As always, we urge all club members to attend this high-spirited event, as competitors, volunteers, or both. Assistance will be needed with entry forms, registration, food, judging, lap-counting and many other aspects of the race. Please contact Justin Kuo at 617-731-9889 in you can help.

An entry form is included in this issue. Alternatively, you can sign up over the Internet by going to

And clicking on the on-line registration link.

The on-line service will cost you and additional 84 cents, but the convenience and paperwork reduction may be well worth it. (And you would also be able to maintain your newsletter in pristine condition.)

For further information, contact the New England Track and Field office at 617-566-7600.

More races for everyone

Our fall schedule also includes these major events:

Regional 10K, Oct. 8

The Connecticut Racewalkers will hold their 10-kilometer championship at at 10 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 8, at Connecticut College in New London. This, like the one-hour/two-hour races the week before, is a New England Walkers Grand Prix event. We are hoping for a strong NEW turnout to make this a truly regionwide race. For further information, call 860-669-4258.

WAVA 5K, Oct. 15

The Sherwood Foundation is hosting the World Association of Veteran Athletes 5-kilometer championship for the North and Central American and Caribbean regions at 9 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 15, in Providence, RI. For further information, contact the foundation at 401-943-1123 or visit the foundation Web site at

Our grand finale, Nov. 5

The traditional end of our outdoor season, the New England Walkers 10K race, potluck lunch and club meeting, will be held at noon Sunday, Nov. 5, at the home of club president Tom Knatt at 83 Riverside Drive in West Concord, MA. Racers and non-racers alike are urged to attend. The food is splendid (please bring a dish, hot or cold, to share) and the club meeting will give us an important start on planning our 2001 season. The more club members we hear from the better as we lay out a framework for next year. For further information, call Tom at 978-369-7912.

A call for volunteers

Club members are needed to work as marshals for the Tufts 10-kilometer road race in Boston on Sunday, Oct. 8. Volunteers help earn money for the club and will have their membership extended through 2001. To volunteer or to learn more, call Justin Kuo at 617-731-9889.

Gallant effort

Joanne Dow of Manchester, NH, came as close as one can get to gaining a spot on the USA Olympic team. Joanne finished fourth in the 20K trials in Sacramento in July in 1:36:17; the top three finishers won a trip to Sydney. Given the stiff competition and the fact that Joanne was coming back from knee surgery over the winter, it was a performance to be proud of.

Race results

Danehy Park developmental 5K - Cambridge, MA., August 13.

1. Bill Harriman, Tewsbury MA 27:44
2. Bob Ullman, Merrimack NH 28:23
3. Dick Ruquist, Concord MA 30:25
4. Justin Kuo, Brookline MA 33:50
5. Bill O'Leary, Westwood MA 36:55
1. Marcia Gutshe, Newton MA 27:21
2. Holly Wenninger, Malden MA 33:05
3. Pat Godfrey, Winthrop MA 34:19
4. Joanne Harriman, Tewsbury MA 35:06
5. Deede Row, North Reading MA 38:46
6. Carol Kuo, Brookline MA 43:05
7. Priscilla Frappier, Waltham MA 43:05

Judges: Charlie Mansbach and Justin Kuo (again performing his amazing double duty).

Bay State Games 3K, Worcester State College, July 22.

1. Steve Vaitones 15:09.90
2. Thomas Knatt 16:33.60
3. Bill Harriman 17:42.70
4. Fred Anderson 19:53.50
5. Richard Shepardson 21:26.60
1. Joanne Harriman 19:59.20
2. Jeanne Shepardson 20:23.40

East Region Masters 5K, Springfield College, Springfield, MA, July 15. A Grand Prix event as part of the regional outdoor track and field championships.

----------- Women 35 ------------
1 Marcia Gutsche 38 Cambridge Sports Union 28:27.15
2 Jean Tenan 36 Connecticut Race Walkers 29:31.86
3 Donna Masters 38 Unattached 31:05.22
4 Ginger Armstrong 37 Connecticut Race Walkers 33:31.93
5 Mary Bernard 36 Unattached 38:11.23
----------- Women 40 ------------
1 Ann Percival 42 Connecticut Race Walkers 28:43.23
----------- Women 50 ------------
1 Meg Savilonis 50 New England Walkers 33:43.49
----------- Women 60 ------------
1 Rachel Beaudet 64 New England Walkers 37:23.24
----------- Women 70 ------------
1 Helen Lavalle 71 Unattached 38:10.90
2 Florence Dagata 73 New England Walkers 40:43.69
------------ Men 35 -------------
1 Ken Mattsson 36 Cambridge Sports Union 28:53.49
2 Stephen McCullough 38 Unattached 29:47.84
3 Bill Masters 36 Unattached 36:18.59
------------ Men 40 -------------
1 Reynaldo Carrazana 42 Unattached 24:55.08
------------ Men 50 -------------
1 Robert Keating 53 New England Walkers 24:20.74
2 Brian Savilonis 50 New England Walkers 25:52.34
------------ Men 55 -------------
1 David Baldwin 57 Maine Race Walkers 26:22.51
2 Thomas Fitzgerald 59 Capital Walkers 39:57.67
------------ Men 60 -------------
1 Spencer Parrish 63 Connecticut Race Walkers 33:51.71
------------ Men 65 -------------
1 Bob Barrett 66 Park Racewalkers 29:12.23
2 Robert Beaudet 67 New England Walkers 31:07.65
3 Dean Kavanaugh 66 Springfield Racewalkers 33:41.17
4 Chuck Dolecki 69 Springfield Racewalkers 35:01.62
------------ Men 70 -------------
1 Bill McCann 70 New England Walkers 33:57.90
2 Louis Free 70 Connecticut Race Walkers 34:22.51
------------ Men 75 -------------
1 Stuart Corning 75 New England Walkers 39:15.00
2 William O'Leary 76 Unattached 39:15.10

Eastern Regional 5K, July 9, New London CT. Part of the open regional track meet.

1 Maryanne Torrellas USATF Connecticut 25:25.90
2 Anne Favolise USATF Maine 27:06.20
3 Li Mie Alice Tan USATF Metropolitan AC 27:10.30
4 Gloria Rawls Unattached 28:03.70
5 Nadya Dimitrov Unattached 32:50.10
6 Stephanie Lyness Unattached 34:10.50
1 Greg Dawson Unattached 23:46.24
2 Steve Vaitones USATF New England 25:57.90
3 Andy Cable Unattached 27:50.00
4 Steve McCollough Unattached 30:55.10
5 Gus Davis USATF Connecticut 35:17.80
DQ Nick Manuzzi, Dave Baldwin, Richard Huie

Danehy Park developmental 5K, July 9, Cambridge, MA.

1. John Costello, Sherborn MA 29.28
2. Justin Kuo, Brookline MA 33:30
3. Richard Ruquist, Concord MA 33:31
4. Bill O'Leary, Westwood MA 36:33
5. Dick Stubblbine, Belmont MA 47:02
1. Itzi Garcia, Jamaica Plain MA 35:37
2. Pat Godfrey, Winthrop MA 36:11
3. Linda Simmons, Fairhaven MA 42:08
4. Florence Dagata, Pawtucket RI 42:27

Judge: Ken Mattsson

Dedham five-miler, July 4, Dedham MA. An unjudged walk held in conjunction with the traditional holiday running race. A steambath of a day, the kind of race where one's second mile can be a full minute slower than the first. About 300 runners out there, but obviously precious few of us in the walking division. I would have felt less sheepish about the whole thing if the enormous plaque they gave me had simply said "finished ahead of Justin."

1. Sheila Danahey, Mystic CT 59:13
2. Cindy McGrath, Norwood MA 1:04:50
1. Charles Mansbach, Newton MA 53:49
2. Justin Kuo, Brookline MA 57:37
3. David Burke, W Roxbury MA 1:12:30

Grand Prix standings

These results are based on our performances in designated races, compared with age-graded tables. The totals so far are based on the New England Indoor 3K or the National Masters Indoor 3K, the Clamdigger 5-miler, the New England 20K and the Eastern Masters 5K. The next Grand Prix event will be the National One-Hour and Two-Hour in Worcester, MA on Oct. 1. Thanks, as always, to Brian Savilonis for the calculations.

Men   Women
Bob Keating 343.2 (4)   Rachel Beaudet 220.8 (3)
Brian Savilonis 242.7 (3)   Florence Dagata 214.9 (3)
Bob Beaudet 222.1 (3)   Joanne Harriman 210.4 (3)
Bob Ullman 218.7 (3)   Marcia Gutsche 159.8 (2)
Bill Harriman 217.7 (3)   Mary Flanagan 131.6 (2)
Charles Dolecki 211.6 (3)   Sheila Danahy 134.1 (2)
Charlie Mansbach 207.5 (3)   Jeanne Shepardson 77.1 (1)
Bill McCann 150.9 (2)   Meg Savilonis 69.6 (1)
Stan Sosnowski 150.4 (2)  
Stuart Corning 139.6 (2)  
Ken Mattsson 130.5 (2)  
Richard Ruquist 78.6 (1)  
Tom Knatt 78.2 (1)  
Rich McElvery 75.0 (1)  
Louis Candido 72.9 (1)  
Dean Kavanaugh 71.8 (1)  
Mike Hoffer 60 (1)  

Knatt is in no hurry to slow down

The following article was published in the July 27 edition of the Concord Journal.

By Stephen Tobey

It's been 24 years since Thomas Knatt last competed in the US Olympic Trials, but the 59-year-old Concord resident is still going strong.

Knatt placed second in the men's open 3,000 meter walk at the Bay State Games Saturday in 16 minutes, 33.60 seconds. Steve Vaitones placed first in 15:09.90.

"This is good competition," said Knatt, who has competed in the Bay States Games several times. "You get people from all over the state competing. I'm glad they put race walking back in."

Knatt has been race walking since 1969, when he was a runner looking for something different to do. He won a national title in race walking in 1975 and competed in the Olympic Trials in 1972 and 1976. Knatt continued to run as well as walk until about 14 years ago, when he sustained a knee injury in a car accident. Earlier this month, he placed second in the USA Track and Field district championships in Dedham.

In race walking, one foot must stay on the ground at all times, and when the lead foot fits the ground the knee must stay straight. The technique looks rather awkward, almost like a waddle, but it is not as difficult as it appears.

"It's not that hard, said Knatt, who notes that the Olympic distances are 20 and 50 kilometers. "It's a technical event, but once you learn it, it's not that difficult to do. You don't get as tired as you would running."

It's also less stressful on the body than running is.

"Generally, we think there aren't as many injuries," said Knatt.

Knatt usually trains 30 to 45 minutes a day, which translates into 3 or 4 miles. Sometimes he goes longer. He also rides a bike and plays table tennis. He was considering competing in the Bay State Games table tennis tournament two weeks ago, but had a conflict with work. Knatt is self-employed, making and repairing guitars and violins. He also teaches classes on how to make and repair those instruments.

Knatt also keeps busy as president of the New England Walkers, a club of about 100 members that holds training sessions and races all over New England, but mostly in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

"I plan to keep at it as long as I can," he said.

New year's resolutions

In January, we printed club members' racewalking goals, hopes and fanciful wishes for 2000. So how did your resolutions work out? What do you hope to achieve in 2001?

We'll publish another roundup in our January newsletter. Please send your thoughts to Charlie Mansbach, 25 Larkspur Road, Newton, MA 02468, or e-mail to or Deadline is Dec. 24.

Racewalking down memory lane

October 1992-October 1994 -- A rare three-year stretch with no repeat winners at our One-Hour and Two-Hour National Championships at the MIT track in Cambridge.

Ian Whatley takes the two-hour title in 1992, Deborah Iden is the women's one-hour winner and Bob Keating is first in the men's one hour. A year later, Olympian Herm Nelson wins the two-hour, Pascale Grand the women's race and Joe Light the men's one-hour. In 1992, another Olympian, Allen James, has a record-setting two-hour performance, Olympian Victoria Herazo is the women's champion and Brian Savilonis is the men's masters winner.

Phone any time

For up-to-the-minute information on race schedules, clinics and other events, call the New England Walkers hotline at: 781-433-7142

Weekly workouts

Ken Mattsson is conducting racewalking sessions at 6:15 p.m. on Tuesdays at the Harvard University track in Cambridge, MA in conjunction with the Cambridge Sports Union. For information, call Ken at 617-576-9331.

Hot on the trail
One man's summer interlude

By Charlie Mansbach

The time is 6:53 a.m. as I leave the gates of the Umaid Bhawan Palace, and the weather is royally warm and humid. Looped around my neck is a hotel map of a 7-kilometer jogging route that I am about to racewalk. The map lists landmarks but no water stops, which is just as well. I am in Jodhpur, on the edge of the Great Indian Desert, and the water here is something I dare not drink.


Finding a racewalking site in India can be difficult. I looked without success two days ago in Ahmedabad, a city of 5.5 million that was our first stop. Taking to the streets was out of the question. Traffic was always heavy, and just walking across an intersection was perilous enough for me. I did come upon a nice public park, around which I would not hesitate to racewalk were it in the United States. But standards of decorum are different here. People dress modestly despite the constant swelter, and the sight of an American in skimpy shorts would be offensive. Such attire, I have learned, is acceptable only on the athletic field. Finally, after 50 minutes of wandering, I found an appropriate site: a raggedy plot with cricket players at one end, goats in the middle and two guys jogging around the perimeter. I would have changed into my togs and done some laps despite the bumpy dirt surface, but by then I had too little time before our overnight train ride to Jodhpur.


I take a final look at my map. At the bottom, bold block letters say "HOTEL IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY EVENT HAPPENING ON THIS ROUTE."

But all seems uneventful. During my first mile, I encounter more animals on the road -- donkeys, sleeping dogs, the first of many cows -- than people. Then I turn left, the street widens and I find myself in a churning sea of activity.

Cars, trucks, buses and three-wheeled rickshaws are streaming down the road, sharing the space with cyclists, pushcarts and stray cows, and everyone but the cows is constantly changing lanes and veering into oncoming traffic. More people are scurrying about on foot, and the sides of the road are thick with others attending variously to public business, private business and personal hygiene. What am I doing here?

The adults generally ignore me, but the flocks of children on their way to school seem entertained by my form. Many call out hello, and I answer each greeting with a hello of my own. Suddenly, my terrain changes. Enormous puddles cover much of the road, and I have no choice but to go to the middle, where the faster vehicles operate. Fortunately, the madcap room-for-everyone driving philosophy works in my favor. Drivers are unperturbed as they give me wide berth and swerve into the opposite lane.

I turn left again at the next chowk, or rotary as we call it back home, and the traffic thins again. A woman walks toward me, her hand outstretched. Does she want money? I obviously am not carrying a wallet. But she does not look as if she wants me to slap her a low five, either. I ponder no further and cruise away. Next I pass a line of soldiers at a military installation (we are a short jet hop from the ever-tense Pakistani border), try my best to look harmless, and then take another left turn back toward my starting point.

The air is getting warmer; the sun is very direct here 25 degrees north of the equator. Good thing I didn't wait till noon. The last stretch is steep; was it only 10 days and 10 time zones ago that I was making a similar climb in the Dedham road race? An insect buzzes past my ear, and I remind myself that this is the morning I take my weekly anti-malaria pill.

I reach the palace gates in 39:36. Hardly a 7K; six kilometers might be more like it. I could hire a rickshaw driver to measure the course, but chances are we wouldn't have enough language in common to define the task clearly.

I put in five more minutes in the immediate vicinity. Then, instead of stopping where I'd started, I reenter the palace gates and sprint down the long drive, around the giant circle of flowers and up to the massive sandstone pillars at the front steps. Here I stop, feeling half like the maharajah of racewalking; half silly American.

The New England Walkers

Send material to:

Charlie Mansbach
25 Larkspur Road
Newton, MA 02468
E-mail address: or

For membership information, contact Justin Kuo at 617-731-9889

New England Walkers
39 Oakland Road
Brookline, MA 02245-6700
United States

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This page was last updated September 15, 2000.
Corrections? Contact Justin Kuo (617-731-9889)