Half Marathon Draws More Than 4,000 Runners

Top male finisher is from Washington DC; top female finisher is from Frederick.

They were running all over Frederick on Sunday. More than 4,000 people took part in the Half Marathon which is part of the 2016 Frederick Running Festival.

Mayor Randy McClement welcomed the runners to the city as they were getting ready to cross the finish line along East Patrick Street in front of the Fairgrounds. “We parted the rain for you just for today. Wasn’t that nice,” he said.

The top male finisher was Girma Gebere, whose originally from Ethiopia, but is currently living in Washington DC. He came in at 1-hour, 8-minutes and 10-second as he was crossing the finish line in front of the grandstand. Speaking through a translator, Gebere explained why he was limping as he cross the finish line. “He had an hamstring¬† problem on his leg,” said his manager, Ayele Belete. “That makes him slow.”

But Gebere was satisfied with the course and the race. “He said he’s very happy for the win. He’s very happy for the course, everything,”¬† Belete said.

The top female finisher was Stephanie Wright of Frederick. “I just decided yesterday {Saturday} that I was going to run. And I’ve never done a half-marathon before so I really had no idea what to expect. But I’ve watched this race for many years because I’m from Frederick. And so it’s very exciting to come out and win it,” she said.

She also said she liked the course. “I heard that they took out some hills, but I still thought it was pretty hilly. The last three or four miles were definitely tough. But I love the course. It’s similar to the route that I run for my long run every week so I’m very familiar with it. So that was fun,
she said.

The 13-mile course takes runners through downtown Frederick, Baker Park, the Hood College campus and past Frederick Memorial Hospital. Race

Director Rachel Ridgeway commented on that, as well as the fact that Sunday was Mother’s Day, to the runners as they were getting for the start of the race. “I’m happy to celebrate Mother’s Day with you because this race has really been my baby for about ten to 12 years. So I’m very proud of the new course that we have. It’s been nine months in the making so this is a great Mother’s Day for me with a great new course,” she said.

Corrigan Sports Enterprises, which puts on the race, said the Frederick Running Festival has an economic impact of $3.5-million to the local economy.