Current Londonderry High School runner Eric Nowak, 17, edged out fellow Lancer Matthew Griffin, 15, by 12 seconds to win the 39th Annual Lundgren/Londonderry Old Home Days 5K early Saturday morning, Aug. 18.
Nowak outpaced the rest of the field of 148 runners participating in the annual trek with a time of 17:38.9, averaging 5:40 per mile.
Matthew Griffin took a close second followed by the race’s long-standing record holder, Dave Dunham, now 54, who grabbed third place with a time of 18:23.5.
Dunham, who lives in Braford Mass., holds the men’s and overall records at 14 minutes and 44 seconds, which he established in 1991.
The female winner of the 2018 race was 14-year-old Londonderry resident Grace McDonough. She finished 11th overall in 21:06.3, she came in nearly a minute ahead of the next female competitor, Caitlin Boufford, 16, also of Londonderry, who finished at 22:04.
The annual event was run in humid, wet conditions, with a full cloud cover overhead and periods of light rain.
Out of the first 11 finishers of the race, seven were Londonderry residents. Along with Nowak and Griffin, other top locals included, 6th, Tyler Kraft, 20:21.8, 7th, William Bieler, 15, 20:22.9; 8th, Tim Porter, 37, 20:26.9, and in 11th place ovcerall was McDonough..
Londonderry female residents who won age group titles were: Linsey Gregoire among the 12-and-under girls (26:06.6), Grace McDonough in the 13-16 girls’ division (21:06.3), Kaelyn Rourke won the 17-19 women group (24:24.5), the 20-29 women winner was Briell Evangelista, (24:20.7), Heather Bell, took the 30-39 women age group (24:42.1), in the 40-49 women division Deb Setterland, (23:55.5), and Donna Ambrose came in first for the 60-69 women competitors (35.45.9).
As for the male runner’s results, top Londonderry finishers were: for 12 and under, Aiden Oljey, (21:58.3), the 13-16 winner was Matthew Griffin (17:50.1) Nowak took first for the 17-19 year old males, and the 20-29 male winner was local Noah Schrank, (20:12.5),
Of special interest, the now 93-year-old runner, Lou Peters, drove himself to the race on Saturday morning from Methuen Mass., got a fifteen minute head start and finished in 57:56.2. Peters has run in the Old Home Day race over 30 times over the decades.