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Hundreds of runners cross the Burby finish line
Spectators cheered as former track coach Russ Brazill fired the gun to start the 32nd annual Bill Burby Inspirational Fun Run on Saturday, leaving athletes just enough time to finish the race before heading to the Strawberry Festival Grand Parade.
This year nearly 400 people participated in the 10K run, 5K run and 5K walk.
Scott Healey, 37, was first across the finish line for the fourth year in a row, winning the overall 5K run with a time of 16:30, a pace of 5:19 per mile. Graham Peet, 15, followed in second place with a time of 16:40 and Jacob Huisingh, 17, took third with a time of 17:05.
Shuichi Komatsuzaki, 24, took first in the 10K, finishing in 38:57, a pace of 6:17 per mile. Robert Ripley, 51, placed second with a time of 39:07, followed by Kevin Ross, 39, in third at 39:40.
Only a fraction of a second separated the first and second place winners of the women’s 10K race. With a time of 41:43.2, Christine Mosley, 27, claimed first, and second place went to Carey Lyons, 19, with a time of 41:43.6. Megan Hatch, 26, took third at 44:23.
First place in the women’s 5K race went to Michelle Neal, 49, with a time of 21:31. Second place went to Katrina Mares, 28, with a time of 23:24. Kate Cunningham, 41, took third with her time of 24:02.
“The Burby” has become a festival tradition for many island families, whether they run, walk or cheer from the sidelines.
Neal’s son Alex Williams said he remembers that his mom used to win a lot when he was growing up.
“They used to have skis for prizes and when I wanted a new pair I would just tell mom that she should go win a pair for me,” he said.
Neal recalls the first time Williams participated in the race.
“I carried him in a backpack while I ran,” she said with a laugh.
This year, for the first time since they both started running in the event, Williams edged out his mom in the 5K race, beating her by just under 12 seconds.
Neal’s daughter, Enya Pooler, 9, took second in her age group in the 5K behind her friend, Meg Cunningham, also 9.
Pooler was easy to spot decked out in hot pink from head to toe.
“Dressing crazy makes me feel better,” she said before the race, “I get all pumped up.”
Vashon High School volleyball coach and teacher Kara Sears joined in the 5K walk, pushing 17-month-old Colton. Her husband Andy Sears, a VHS basketball coach and teacher, helps organize the event each year.
Due to a printing error, sponsor logos did not appear on the back of this year’s T-shirts.
“We count on our sponsors to make this event happen,” said Andy Sears, “we want them to know how much we appreciate them and feel awful that this happened.”
Proceeds go to support Vashon High School athletics and an annual scholarship for high school athletes.