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New England Walkers Newsletter
May 2001

Next stop, Ninigret

Our next big race day will be Sunday, June 10.

Our 20-kilometer New England racewalk championship -- a Grand Prix event -- plus a nonchampionship 5-kilometer race will be held that morning in Ningret Park in Charlestown, RI.

The same event last year was one of the highlights of our season, with the largest field for a local 20K that we've seen in many years. We're hoping for another big showing this time. The 5K race will begin at 9 a.m., followed by the 20K at 9:45. The separate starts will enable people to help count laps and hand out water for the race in which they're not competing.

The area is scenic and the course is absolutely flat. The loop consists of 1,375 meters, which means we will race 14.75 laps to cover the 20 kilometers. Our top mathematicians will be on hand to help you determine your target pace per lap.

A race form is inside this newsletter. Click here for the entry form. For further information, contact Justin Kuo at 617-731-9889 or Joe Light at 401-596-3173.

Helpers are needed. If you can assist at the June 10 races, please telephone Justin or e-mail him at

Call for volunteers

We are looking for New England Walker volunteers to assist at the JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge road race at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 21, at Boston Common. Volunteers help earn money for the club and will have their membership extended through 2002. To volunteer, or to receive additional information, call Justin Kuo at 617-731-9889, or e-mail him at

Grand Prix standings

Two races in this year's Grand Prix series have been completed. Those races were your faster time in the New England Indoor 3k at the BU Armory or the National Indoor 3k at the Reggie Lewis Track, and the recent Clamdigger 8k in Westerly, RI. The standings, based on the times in the races as compared to age-graded tables, are:

1. Marcia Gutsche 169.03 (2 races)
2. Joanne Harriman 155.21
3. Chris Anderson 73.58 (1 race)
4. Florence Dagata 70.86
5. Pamela Hoss 69.15
6. Rachel Beaudet 67.37
7. Sheila Sosnowski 65.74
8. Joyce Vandergalien 65.40
1. Bob Keating 179.69 (2 races)
2. Stan Sosnowski 153.07
3. Bill Harriman 151.96
4. Charlie Mansbach 140.43
5. Tom Knatt 79.39 (1 race)
6. Bob Ullman 75.85
7. Louis Free 75.48
8. Richard Ruquist 75.32
9. Bill McCann 72.22
10. Bill O' Leary 71.49
11. Dennis Slattery 68.41
12. Chuck Dolecki 67.75
13. Justin Kuo 62.22

The series, says record-keeper Bill Harriman, is "a great way to test yourself, and see how you rate against the standards for your own gender and age group. The next race in the series will be our longest GP race, the 20k on the flat, fast Ninigret Park loop on June 10th. Are you up for the challenge?"

Race results

Sherwood Foundation 15K - May 6, Foster, RI. What a difference a year makes. The temperature was 35 degrees cooler than it was for last year's 15K and 30K road races -- and the turnout for the unjudged racewalk divisions was down 85 percent. No walkers at all in the mountainous 30K. "Once in a lifetime is enough," said 2000 winner Joe Light, who switched to the 15K this year. There was no duel between the two walkers, obviously, but we each had enough runners to try to keep up with and overtake. Lovely day, beautiful scenery, a nice tuneup for next month's 20K.

Joe Light 1:22:37
Charlie Mansbach 1:39:36

Clamdigger 8K and then some - April 22, Westerly, RI. Grand Prix event. A beautiful day, perhaps the best in the nine-year history of this Westerly Track & Athletic Club production. And what better way to celebrate than to do a little extra racing. Belatedly, racewalk director Joe Light discovered that he had started us at the wrong telephone pole. "This also affected the turnaround point at the starting line," reported the apologetic Joe. Subsequent remeasurement revealed that the course was 360 meters longer than intended. The true distance left Grand Prix scorekeeper Bill Harriman with a challenge, since there are no international age-graded tables for races of 8,360 meters. Bill solved the problem by multiplying our official times by 0.9569378 and doing his tabulations from there. And here are the results for the 5.194 miles we did cover:

1 Marcia Gutsche 42:52
2 Joanne Harriman 54:57
3 Sheila Sosnowski 1:00:45
4 Nectar Babaeghian 1:09:39
5 Ann Spivak Diamond 1:10:09
6 Florence Dagata 1:12:41
7 Carol Ballmer 1:15:54
1 Bob Keating 41:22
2 Stan Sosnowski 47:36
3 Bill Harriman 47:41
4 Andy Cable 51:56
5 Charlie Mansbach 52:39
6 Dick Ruquist 53:13
7 Justin Kuo 55:39
8 Louis Free 57:45
9 Richard Huie 59:43
10 Bill O'Leary 1:05:33

Judges: Diana Gladden (Chief), Bill Banks, Ross Dagata

Volunteers: Ross Dagata, Hilary Keating, Genya Kuo, Tolya Kuo, Joe Light

105th Boston Marathon - April 16. Unofficial and unjudged, but they did go the 26.2-mile distance.. The results are the recorded times; chip times are approximately 10 minutes faster.

1 . Steve Attaya 52 New Orleans LA 4:57:44
2 . Robert H Keating 54 Nashua NH 4:57:46
3 . Grace D. Mutz 41 Cary NC 5:10:48
4 . Anne Marie Kunz 59 New York NY 5:20:18
5 . Ole Holsti 67 Chapel Hill NC 5:22:30
6 . Dennis J Buckley 53 Marlborough MA 5:52:37
7 . Debbie Shelby 48 Spencer MA 5:57:13
8 . Maureen Danahy 44 Brookline MA 5:57:14

Danehy Park 5K - April 8, Cambridge, MA. Our monthly series of developmental racewalks gets underway in the now-traditional trying circumstances. Bill Harriman reports: "Three years out of three now, first a blizzard then last year a cold rain with deep, icy puddles on the course, and now this year. The Puddle was there again but at least the rain stopped just before 9:30. The chill factor felt like about 15. John Costello, Justin Kuo and Richard Ruquist all showed up at the last minute, nobody warmed up, and we all got it over with as fast as we could. John and Richard headed straight home for hot showers after the race, while Justin, Joanne and I huddled over hot soup at Bread & Circus. Maybe we should start these races at the beginning of spring, in June."

1. John Costello NEW Needham, MA 29:26
2. Justin Kuo NEW Brookline MA 33:25
3. Richard Ruquist NEW Cambridge MA 42:28

Judges: Joanne and Bill Harriman.

Justin adds that a new 400 meter track is under construction just a stone's throw from the finish line. Perhaps it will figure into our future Danehy events, although Bill observes that the new track does not appear to be level. We'll all just have to show up at Danehy to see this for ourselves.

Report from the National Invitational 20K

By Joe Light

Ken Mattsson and I arrived at our hotel in Manassas, Virginia early afternoon on Saturday, March 31, to be greeted with most shocking news: Bob Keating had been DQ'd from the 50k race that morning! Keats, who probably has the best technique in New England and is unarguably one of the top two or three over-50 walkers in the U.S., was tossed from a race. We saw him later that afternoon at a local community center where the top male walkers in the U.S. and Coach Pena from the ARCO center in Chula Vista, California were presenting a panel discussion. Keats was his usual unflappable self -- he could have just set a record for all we could tell.

The discussion was pretty interesting. Pena's English is rather limited, so one of the walkers acted as translator. Much of it focussed on the problems of training for international competition with the present schedule of races in the U.S. There was also some useful advice for us average folks. The audience had a global feel with athletes from Pena's homeland of Ecuador, Venezuela, Cuba, many Canadians, and a Swede, Andreas Gustafsson, the son of Olympic walker Bo Gustafsson, who won silver in the 50k in 1984. He sat at our table for dinner, where we learned that he is a student at Brigham Young University. Unfortunately, he was DQ'd the next day in the 20k race.

The weather on Sunday was just about perfect for racing. As usual, Bob Briggs and his large crew of volunteers did an outstanding organizational job (except for raisins in the bagels -- oy vey!). Ken easily achieved his goal of going under 30 minutes in the 5k. I was about 3 minutes slower than my goal of 1:55 in the 20k, but was pleased to get no warnings, despite a crew of tough judges who were positioned every 200 meters or so on the 1000-meter straightaway.

This was my third year at the National Invitational. Flights from Providence are relatively inexpensive and room rates are pretty cheap. I urge NEW members to consider coming down next spring.

Men's 20K
1. Xavier Moreno Quito, Equador 1:25:16
2. Sean Albert Chula Vista, VA, 1:26:55
3. Patrick Boisclair St-Lin QUE 1:33:22
4. Gordon Mogher Toranto, ONT 1:33:36
5. Gregory Dawson St. James, NY 1:44:47
6. Ian Whatley Greenville, NC 1:46:27
7. James Carmines Etters, PA, 1:53:13
8. Edward Fitch Mechanicsburg, OH 1:53:32
9. Joe Light Westerly, RI 1:57:53
10. Nicholas Bdera Roosevelt Island, NY 1:58:42
11. Bob Barrett Smallwod, NY 2:00:40
12. Dave Lawrence Buffalo, NY 2:03:05
13. George Opsahl Lake Oswego, OR 2:05:23
14. Jack Starr Newark, DE 2:11:45
15. Bill Goodwin Somerset, PA 2:13:31
16. Robert Dawson Little River, SC 2:21:14
17. Douglas Kreinik Parkersburg, WV 2:23:37
Women's 20K
1. Teresa Vaill Pine Plains, NY 1:33:23
2. Marina Crivello Montreal QUE 1:44:41
3. Heidi Hauch Scottsdale, AZ 1:52:03
4. Martine Rainville St Laurent, QUE 1:55:35
5. Emma Carter Baldwin City, KS 1:55:53
6. Ann Gerhardt Sacramento, CA 2:01:33
7. Tara Shea Alabama, LA 2:06:42
8. Eileen Lawrence Buffalo, NY 2:14:46
9. Ginger Armstrong Taftville, CT 2:17:46
10. Joan Venslavsky Mercerville, NJ 2:19:18
11. Star V. Campbell State College, PA 2:26:18
12. Fran Emanuel Brick, NJ 2:29:42
Women's 5K
1. Marcia Gutsche Newton, MA 26:24
2. Janet Comi Erie, PA 29:16
3. Lilian Whalen Etobicoke, ONT 30:22
4. Patricia Jones Utica, NY 31:00
5. Virginia Inglese Vienna, VA 31:07
6. Marie Woodland Norristown, PA 31:24
7. Jan Adams Surrey, UK 33:30
8. Linda Rodbell Great Falls VA 33:43
9. Karen Arnold Theodore, AL 33:49
10. Daisy LaForce Ottawa, ONT 34:04
11. Maryanne Torrellas Clinton, CT 34:21
(26 finishers)
Men's 5K
1. Allen James Clifton Park, NY 22:07
2. Eric Cordero Cuba 23:33
3. Juan Yanes Venezuela 27:15
4. David Baldwin Harrington, ME 27:25
5. Don Ramsden London, ONT 27:50
6. George Fenigsohn Poquoson, VA 28:09
7. Marc Olshan Alfred, NY 29:08
8. Ken Mattsson Cambridge, MA 29:11
(16 finishers)

National Masters Indoor 3K - Part of the three-day track and field championships at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston, March 25. The fifth consecutive year that Boston has hosted this event. As usual, racewalkers flocked here from all over the country, and a strong team of officials made everything run smoothly.

----------- Women 35 ------------
1 Marcia Gutsche W39 Newton, MA 14:52.03
2 Jean Teanan W37 Bristol, CT 16:30.62
3 Donna Masters W38 Troy, NY 18:15.74
4 Eileen Druckenmiller W39 Emmaus, PA 19:57.37
---------- Women 40 ------------
1 Victoria Herazo W41 Las Vegas, NV 14:50.85
2 Ann Percival W42 New Britain, CT 17:09.95
3 Jeanette Wineland W42 Swartz Creek, MI 18:33.43
4 Maryanne Torrellas W42 Clinton, CT 20:26.12
---------- Women 45 ------------
1 Lee Chase W47 S. Glastonbury, CT 15:34.99
2 Ann Gerhardt W49 Sacramento, CA 16:34.63
3 Debbie Topham W48 Mayville, MI 16:52.41
4 Chris Anderson W47 Shrewsbury, MA 17:58.82
---------- Women 50 ------------
1 Yoko Eichel W53 Woosland Hills, CA 16:57.63
2 Nadya Dimitrov W50 Smithtown, NY 19:10.06
3 Pamela Hoss W52 Brookline, MA 19:58.39
4 Joyce Vandergalien W53 Providence, RI 21:18.60
---------- Women 55 ------------
1 Kathy Frable W55 McKinney, TX 18:08.30
2 Hansi Rigney W59 Carmel, CA 18:21.56
3 Joanne Harriman W58 Tewksbury, MA 18:59.11
4 Ruby Tolbent W59 Weeks Barre, PA 20:23.99
---------- Women 60 ------------
1 Rita Sinkovec W61 Evergreen, CO 18:26.02
2 Joanne Elliott W64 Deerfield Beach, FL 18:26.50
3 Lana Kane W61 Consetoga, PA 21:11.42
---------- Women 65 ------------
1 Rachel Beaudet W65 East Longmeadow, MA 23:20.72
---------- Women 70 ------------
1 Kate Marrs W72 Milwaukee, WI 20:52.65
---------- Women 75 ------------
1 Miriam Gordon W75 Hollywood, FL 21:24.68
- Eunice Kavanagh W78 Longmeadow, MA DQ
----------- Men 35 -------------
1 Stephen McCullough M39 CT 16:15.98
2 Bill Masters M36 Troy, NY 23:28.56
----------- Men 40 -------------
1 Douglas Johnson M40 Morganfield, KY 14:24.49
2 Dennis Slattery M43 Lowell, MA 16:47.51
- Rod Craig M42 Bad Axe, MI DQ
----------- Men 45 -------------
1 Jerry Gordon M46 Glens Falls, NY 20:20.54
----------- Men 50 -------------
1 Robert Keating M54 Nashua, NH 13:50.20
2 Stanley Sosnowski M50 West Kingston, RI 15:30.80
3 Robert Ullman M52 Nashua, NH 16:13.68
4 Bill Harriman M53 Tewksbury, MA 17:21.87
5 Ross Barranco M51 Linden, MI 17:43.48
6 Danny Wineland M53 Swartz Creek, MI 19:46.84
----------- Men 55 -------------
1 Rich Friedlander M56 Chesterfield, MO 13:36.80
2 Norman Frable M55 McKinney, TX 15:32.82
3 David Baldwin M58 Harrington, ME 16:28.92
4 Charles Mansbach M56 Newton, MA 18:25.73
---------- Men 60-69 -----------
1 Jack Bray M68 Greenbrae, CA 16:03.74
2 Bob Barrett M67 Smallwood, NY 16:05.97
3 Paul Johnson M63 Venice, FL 16:11.47
4 John Elwarner M61 Sterling Hgts, MI 16:28.23
5 Thomas Knatt M60 Concord, MA 16:38.23
6 Seth Kaminsky M60 Cold Spring Harbor, NY 17:40.66
7 Gustave Davis M63 Orange, CT 19:43.35
- Richard Huie M65 Branford, CT DQ
----------- Men 70 -------------
1 Jack Starr M72 Newark, DE 17:54.37
2 Edward Gawinski M74 Wilmington, DE 19:09.49
3 Bill McCann M71 Longmeadow, MA 20:30.24
4 Charles Dolecki M70 Wilbraham, MA 21:36.53
- Dick Donley M74 Tulsa, OK DQ
----------- Men 75 -------------
1 Robert Mimm M76 Willingboro, NJ 19:12.96
2 Charles Boyle M77 Annapolis, MD 20:30.41
3 Johhn Nervetti M76 Oak Ridge, NJ 20:38.47
----------- Men 80 -------------
1 Tim Dyas M80 Ridgewoof, NJ 22:33.17
2 Paul Geyer M81 Rochert, MN 24:16.31
----------- Men 85 -------------
1 Bill Patterson M85 Greensboro, NC 24:29.58

Officials: Mary Helen Baldwin, Ross Barranco, Tom Eastler, Ann Gerhardt, Diane Gladden, Tom Knatt, Carol Kuo, Justin Kuo, Ken Mattsson, Maryanne Torrellas, Steve Vaitones.

Marcha atletica for everyone
By Charlie Mansbach

I do not know how to say "back of the pack" in Portuguese.

Yet here I am in Rio Maior, 50 miles north of Lisbon, for this city's 10th annual International Racewalk Grand Prix.

Rio Maior calls itself "The City of Sport" and takes its athletics seriously. "This city has long been considered a national and international reference point of racewalking, not only for the quality of its athletes, but also for the dedication of its organizations," says the loosely translated message of welcome from Mayor Silvano Manuel Gomes Sequeira in the race program booklet.

Indeed, the athletic spirit is in the air. I pick up my bib number inside City Hall (no registration fee; complimentary T-shirt) and wander to the nearby race course. The downtown rotary, a row of shops and one side of a park are blocked off to foot and vehicular traffic, and on the other side of the barriers is a one-kilometer loop with a huge arch at the start/finish line. A flea market has sprung up on the periphery, with merchants displaying their wares on tables and blankets and scores of people milling about. Ah, what we wouldn't give for a racewalk to be the focal point of public activity in some city back home.

The day's main events are 20Ks for elite female and male walkers. [I find out a week later that the women's title went to Portuguese Olympian Susana Feitor in 1:27:55 and the men's crown to Latvian Olympian Aigars Fadejevs in 1:22:02, closely followed by French Olympian Anthony Gillet and his countryman Denis Longluis, both in 1:22:16.] I clearly am not eligible for the 20K; the back-of-the-pack guys in this race will finish in the 1:40s.

Instead, I am signed up for a 5K for juvenis masculinos and veteranos masculinos. In other words, junior and master males, same as in our one-hour race in Worcester -- guys roughly my age and guys younger than my children. Four other short races precede ours, from 1K for small children to 4K for junior and masters women. Ten-kilometer races for junior men and women will follow, starting the same time as the 20Ks.

Five minutes before our race is to commence, the announcer tells us to enter the holding pen near the starting line. I do not understand a word, but fortunately my nephew's wife does and heads me in the right direction. My son then strolls over from the flea market and notices that I am wearing my USA singlet inside-out. Not wanting to make an unintended international statement, I quickly remove my pins, number and singlet, and, with son's and nephew's wife's help, put everything back together properly with two minutes to spare.

Twenty-five of us take to the line. The starter delivers a few sentences that I also do not understand but can guess at, and fires his pistol. Off we go past the row of shops, make a turnaround at a spot marked by cones and -- nice touch -- potted plants, and head back in the opposite direction to another leafy turnaround. When I finish my first lap my wife and our nephew's wife let out a big whoop of encouragement. Then they look around, notice that none of the other spectators are yelling anything, and remain silent for the rest of the race.

There are judges all over the place, and guys on bicycles are transporting red cards to the DQ board. Somewhere along the line, two walkers behind me and one ahead of me get the hook. I'm enjoying all the little touches. The people at the support stations give us full, opened bottles of spring water. The announcer calls out the name of each walker who passes by (and does a pretty good job of pronouncing mine). My lap counter wordlessly holds up fingers to tell me how many loops remain. All that's missing is a functioning clock -- the two big timepieces remain at zero, presumably being rested for the main events to follow.

I never find out the race results. I know the winner didn't lap me, so I'm guessing he finished in 25-26 minutes. The 15th and 16th guys were probably more than a minute ahead of me, and I was well in front of five others. My watch tells me I did a 30:47, better than my 5Ks of last year.

I cool down, stretch and watch the start of the 20K. Then off we go to the old walled city of Obidos for sightseeing and some walking of a noncompetitive nature.

2001 race calendar

As always, our listing of racewalking events is not engraved in stone. Some races are added during the season, others are changed or canceled. It's always best to verify the time, date and location with the race director before setting out.


20 - Great Bear 5K. Pollard School, Needham, MA, 3:20 p.m. An unjudged walk as part of a daylong series of road races. 781-444-8499.

27 - Brookline Reservoir walk. 617-731-9889


3 -5K, Danehy Park, Cambridge, 9:30 a.m. Moved up from the second Sunday of the month so as not to conflict with the New England 20K. Contact Bill Harriman at 978-640-9676 (before 9:30 p.m.).

10 - New England 20K, Ninigret Park, Charlestown, RI. Grand Prix event. Entry form enclosed.

15-16 - Massachusetts Senior Games, 1500-meter and 5K racewalks for ages 50 and above. Springfield. 413-788-2457.

16 - New England outdoor 3K championship. Part of the regional track met. Northeast University track, Dedham, MA. New England track and field office, 617-566-7600.

24 - Brookline Reservoir walk. 617-731-9889.


4 - Dedham 5-miler, Dedham, MA. An unjudged walking division as part of the town's holiday road race.

10 - 5K, Danehy Park, Cambridge, 9:30 a.m. (See June listing.)

22 - Brookline Reservoir walk. 617-731-9889.

14 -Bay State Games 3K, MIT track, Cambridge, MA. Part of the track and field portion of the statewide athletics festival. 781-932-6555.


12 ????- 5K, Danehy Park, Cambridge, 9:30 a.m. (See June listing)

12 - Eastern Regional Masters 5K championship. Part of the regional masters track and field meet. Grand Prix event. Springfield College, Springfield, MA. New England track and field office, 617-566-7600.

26 - Brookline Reservoir walk. 617-731-9889.

26 - Sherwood Foundation 10K. Unjudged walk in conjunction with running race. 401-943-1123.


9 - 5K, Danehy Park, Cambridge, 9:30 a.m. (See June listing)

23 - Brookline Reservoir walk. 617-731-9889.


7 -- National One- and Two-Hour Championships, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, MA. Grand Prix event. Justin Kuo, 617-731-9889.

26 - Sherwood Foundation 5K, Providence, RI. 401-943-1123

Racewalking down memory lane

June 1997 -- Bob Keating captures the New England 20K in 1:50:08 as a grand total of four of us go the distance on a muggy morning in Boston's Franklin Park. Ten others race the first half of the course and then stick around to furnish much-appreciated moral support.

May 1999 - The New England 20K moves to a challenging 1K loop on the Rhode Island College campus in Providence. Brian Savilonis tops the five finishers in 1:54:53, and the next day repairs to his computer and calculates what our times might have been if we'd raced on a level course instead of climbing a hill 20 times.

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

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 May 15, 2001.
Corrections? Contact Justin Kuo (617-731-9889)