BANGOR, Maine — Bangor native Adam Goode wasn’t concerned with his time during the 34th annual Walter Hunt Memorial Fourth of July 3K road race Friday.
“I just wanted to win. I was in the mid 4:40s for a mile and that is one of the slowest miles I’ve ever run,” said Goode, who had finished second in the last two Hunt races and desperately wanted to win his hometown race.
And he did so in impressive fashion despite humid conditions with a cloud cover that supplied the runners with a small respite from the heat.
“If the sun had been out, it would have been brutal,” said 77-year-old Dick Storch of Orono who was one of the 566 runners.
Goode took the lead three-quarters of a mile into the race and built a 20-yard advantage by the time they reached the Joshua Chamberlain Bridge that took the runners from Brewer into Bangor. He pulled away to win by 33 seconds over second-place finisher Luke Rand of Orrington.
Goode, Bangor High School’s boys and girls cross country coach and a Maine legislator, finished in 8 minutes, 44 seconds for his first-ever Hunt win. He has run 10 of the last 11 Hunt races, missing only the 2009 race.
Brewer’s Kristine Guaraldo captured the women’s division for the second time in three years. She posted a time of 10:53. She was 33rd overall.
“It’s awesome. It went great,” said Goode. “A lot of my close friends, people who are on my Christmas card list, have won it so it’s cool [to be included on the list with them].”
Goode said his race strategy was based on the field.
“If Riley or Louie were in it, I wouldn’t have been able to go out fast,” said Goode, who did take the lead early. Eighteen-year-old Connor Wagner of Bangor’s John Bapst High School was one of the other runners who went out strong.
“He ran really strong. He was with me for almost the entire first mile,” said Goode.
Following the 18-year-old Rand, who just graduated from Brewer High where he was one of their top distance runners, were Orono’s Ken Akiha (9:21), Bangor’s Dominic Martin (9:23) and Wagner (9:26). Rounding out the top 10 were Ian Fraser of Brewer (9:32), Dustin Ramsay of Hampden (9:42), 13-year-old Gabe Coffey of Bangor (9:46), Perry LeBreton of Kenduskeag (9:47) and Doug DeAngelis of Ipswich, Mass. (9:51).
“Adam ran a really good race,” said Rand, who was pleased with his performance.
“I was happy. I wasn’t expecting to finish second,” said Rand, son of Brewer High School boys and girls cross country and outdoor track coach Glendon Rand. “I’ve been training for longer races. This is one of the shorter races in the (Sub5 TradeWinds Marketplace Race Series) so I used it as speedwork.
“I’ve been running this race since I was little and this is my best finish, by far,” said the University of Maine-bound Rand.
Seventeen-year-old Kaitlin Saulter of Hermon (11:04) was second in the women’s division followed by Hampden’s Elizabeth Labun (11:11), Carrie Pike of Bangor (11:30), Randy Whitmore of Milford (11:35), Katherine Collins of Winterport (11:36), Casey Dunn of Limerick (11:37), Amy Curtis of Newburgh (11:38), Tessa Condon of Bangor (11:41) and Heather Knowles of Brewer (11:58).
Eight-year-old Ruth White of Orono finished in 12:43 which was 20th-best among the women.
Last year’s women’s winner, former Mt. Blue High School of Farmington and University of Maine runner Jordan Daniel, did not participate.
“Relatively speaking, I [raced] up to expectations,” said Guaraldo, who celebrated her 38th birthday earlier this week and is coming off a win in the Tour du Lac 10-miler in Bucksport last weekend. It was her fifth Tour du Lac triumph in six races and fourth in a row.
She has won two Hunt races.
She said one of the keys to her success was a pair of New Balance cross-trainer shoes she purchased “six to nine months ago.”.
“I had been having trouble finding a shoe that worked for me,” explained Guaraldo. “Now I can finally run again [comfortably].”
Saulter was an All-American soccer player at Hermon and posted the fastest-ever time by a girl in the state in the 400-meter run during the state Class B meet in Brewer last month (56.95). She will attend the University of Maine and play soccer for the Black Bears in the fall.
“It was good. It was fun,” said Saulter. “I hadn’t done it in a while, not since I was 10. I was pretty happy with my time. I have been running a lot while training for soccer so it wasn’t too difficult.”
Saulter finished 37th overall.
One of the attractions of the race is the family atmosphere and there were 30 family teams.
“It’s a great opportunity to get out and do something as a family,” said Lin White, who ran with wife Kari and daughters Nora (10), Ruth (8) and Clara (6).
“We look forward to it,” said Erika Lebel, who ran the race with husband Mike and daughters Caleigh (14 years old), Madison (10) and Kassidy (6).