Freshburst Five-Mile Run titles go to McCabe, Hulme

By on July 13, 2016


Chris McCabe cruises to the finish line with the men's title in last Saturday's Freshburst 5-Mile Run. (Photo by Matt Libhart)

Chris McCabe cruises to the finish line with the men’s title in last Saturday’s Freshburst 5-Mile Run. (Photo by Matt Libhart)

Chris McCabe has learned from his past races.

In previous outings, the Lancaster resident has jumped out to a fast start, only to fade down the stretch.

Last Saturday in Lititz, McCabe was more strategic about his game plan and it came with a nice reward.

After passing Mike Spooner with roughly one mile left in his first-ever Freshburst Five-Mile Run, the 26-year-old overcame muggy conditions to cross the finish line at Johnson & Johnson with top honors in a time of 26:58. Spooner took runner-up in 27:07.

“I knew I didn’t want to lead going out because in some of the races where I’ve kinda blown up, I’ve taken it out a little bit too hard,” McCabe said. “So I wanted to let (Spooner) take it out and see where the pace was at … I felt good. I wanted to go under 27 and I hit just about that, especially given the humidity, and a win is a win, so you can’t be disappointed with that.”

There was no disappointment for Emily Hulme, either as she led wire-to-wire in the women’s race en route a first-place finish in 30:16. Samantha Snukis was second among the women in 30:25.

“I was hoping for a faster time,” Hulme said, “but all things considered with the weather, I think it was actually a pretty good race overall.”

Emily Hulme took first-place honors in the women's division in last Saturday's Freshburst 5-Miler. (Photo by Matt Libhart)

Emily Hulme took first-place honors in the women’s division in last Saturday’s Freshburst 5-Miler. (Photo by Matt Libhart)

Overall, a total of 223 runners completed the Five-Miler, with another 66 finishing the 5K Walk. All proceeds benefited the Pennsylvania chapter of the Dream Factory, which has granted more than 25,000 dreams to chronically and critically ill children nationally since its inception in 1980.

McCabe, whose opening two mile-splits were in the 5:15 range, and Spooner were at the front of the pack most of the way. As the runners headed out Lincoln Avenue, then turned left onto Penn Valley Road, McCabe was holding the second-place spot about 10 meters behind.

Maintaining what he thought was a manageable pace, he found himself reeling in Spooner as they approached the three and a half mile point.

“I started realizing that I was gaining just a little bit on Mike,” McCabe said. “It was a good race pace for me.”

Finally, he made his move at the four-mile spot.

“Just from the warm-up, I had an idea in that last mile it would start going a little bit downhill,” McCabe said. “So I just tried to pick it up a little bit past him and then just hold on.”

Originally from the Wilkes Barre-Scranton area prior to attending Pitt and then law school in Carlisle, McCabe only began running in March, 2014. Admittedly shy of the running experience that many of the local top-tier runners have, McCabe was happy to be able to pull off Saturday’s victory.

“I’ve won other races, (but) I probably haven’t really beaten anybody of Mike’s caliber,” he said. “He runs for the Keystone Track Club, and just from other races around this area, I know a lot of those guys are pretty good, and I usually try to run with them. But I haven’t really had too much success ultimately beating them for a win. But I’ve been closing the gap that they’ve had on me of late, so it was good to finally get a win.”

Hulme was back on the Freshburst course for the first time in more than a decade, when she was still a recent Cedar Crest High School graduate.

Now living in Milford after spending a couple years in Vermont, she took advantage of Saturday’s opportunity to get back to Lititz.

“My parents live in the area and I knew of the race from having done it before,” Hulme said. “I like Lititz, it’s just a wonderful town and a good race.”

Averaging a …. mile pace, she might have caught a quick glimpse of any potential challengers on the loop from Penn Valley Road to Limerock to Lexington and back to Lincoln Avenue, but she was never really threatened.

“I was really just sorta focused on my own race,” Hulme said. “I don’t run five-mile races very often, but my goal was to break 30 and I had to adjust a little after starting off and it was just so humid.”

Hulme is certainly hopeful that the conditions will be a little cooler when she competes in the Akron (Ohio) marathon this fall.

“I’m hopefully targeting a fall marathon and a couple other shorter races along the way,” Hulme said. “I haven’t done (the Akron Marathon) before, so it’s something new, something different.”


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