Hobble/Gobble Prediction Run-Walk Transition Smooth
Updated: Nov 25, 2019
BY DAVE SHEA
WEST POTSDAM - In its 22nd edition, the Hobble/Gobble Prediction Run/Walk enjoyed a smooth transition on Saturday as Jacqueline Bill of Canton directed her first race at the West Potsdam Fire Hall.
Bill took over the director's spot at the finish line occupied for 21 years by Derry Loucks of West Potsdam. Loucks ran the race for the first time and was honored with the 2019 Hobble/Gobble Commitment to North Country Running Award and a standing ovation from the huge crowd of participants who enjoyed chili, bagels, yogurt and cookie and other refreshments in post race celebration in the fire hall.
"I am a man of few words," said Loucks in receiving the award from Jacqueline Bill.
"This race was started in Madrid 36 years ago by Jim Halpen and was held in Lisbon with Wayne Moore running it. I took over and brought it to West Potsdam where it grew to 500 participants. Jackie Bill took it over this year and she is doing a good job,"
A field of 375 participants helped raise $10,000 lifting the race's all-time fund-raising to approximately $190,000. The Potsdam Holiday Fund is the major beneficiary of the event which also aids disadvantaged families and children all over the area and donations are also distributed local charities, food banks and community centers.
"Things went well. This morning I ran some things down to the Heuvelton Cheerleaders and there were some wild turkeys on the road," said Bill.
"That turned out to be a good omen."
Bill offered thanks to the volunteers who made it possible to continue the event at the scale which fulfilled Loucks' vision of 22 years ago.
"It would be much easier to do this if I was retired," she said with a smile.
"There is so much work involved and I want to thank all the volunteers, participants and sponsors. We had 375 registered today and we will raise $10,000 for the Potsdam Holiday fund and other charities. We are getting closer to the $200,000 mark overall."
Cheerleaders on the course continued the unique features of the race which also included music from a professional sound system at the finish which greeted every finisher from first to last.
The top four predictors in the long race (6.1 miles) and the top eight in the short race (3.1 miles) received Hobble/Gobble trophies and Thanksgiving Turkeys.
The top three prognosticators on the long course all hailed from Canton: Victoria Lederer of Canton (46:38, 0:07.8 seconds), Steve Greco (50:32, 0:19.2 seconds) and Kevin Tupper (56:32, 19.2 seconds). Gary Burns of Watertown (59:59.8, 0:30.6) took fourth.
Jeff Jones ran the best time on the long course at 44:06.8.
Kailin Backus of Rennselaer Falls turned in the best prediction on the short course in a very close competition. Her time of 30:02.00 was a near perfect 0:00.3. Abagail Greguire of St. Regis Falls ran a 256:45 to place second at 0:03.3 and was followed in the top eight by Pam Beaudette of Cant (41:44:00, 0:04.00), Beth Colello of Canton (31:09 0:04.10), Amanda Stopa Goldstein of Canton (23:24. 0:04.7), Jim Triolo of Norwood (59:30, 0:06.8), Ben Gallozzo of Potsdam (25:30, 0:07.5), Wendy Jacobs of Ogdensburg (34:48, 0:07.7) and Dwayne Ghostlaw of Brushton (27:47, 0:07.7).
Dean Finnegan of Potsdam led the short course runners by time with a 22:09.
Along of the New York State entries participants also came from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Pennsylvannia, Ontario and Quebec,
NOTE: complete results of the race are available on line at SportsStats.com
GOBBLER GALLOP THURSDAY
Jackie Bill also directs the Gobbler Gallop which will be held on Thursday at the Heuvelton Fire Hall.//
"Please join us for our 7th annual Thanksgiving Day walk/run to benefit the Heuvelton Food Pantry. Registration begins at 9:15 with walkers starting at 9:45, runners at 10 a.m.. The entry fee is two or more non-perishable food items and all ability levels are encouraged! Bring your friends, bring your family, bring your pets to walk or run this 5k-ish course through the village of Heuvelton," she said inviting any interested to participate.