RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) -
Despite rainy weather, nearly 40-thousand people attended the 15th annual Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10k on Saturday.
More than 36,000 children and adults braved the wet weather to run in the fourth largest 10k in the nation.
Some runners enjoyed the rain. “Light rain, the mist, this is great running weather,” said runner Katie Dohrman. Others had to pay more attention to the slick pavement. “I tried to look down to make sure I didn’t wipe out on any slick bricks or twigs,” said Jackie Woods.
Two university students from out of town took the top spot in both gender categories. They were competing in the first Collegiate Running Association 10k Road Race National Championships. Nearly 1,400 college athletes took to the streets of Richmond to compete for prize money.
Paul Chelimo, a senior at University of North Carolina-Greensboro, placed first in the men’s group. He crossed the finish line in 29 minutes and 24 seconds. “I'm happy I won the race. It's a good day for me,” Chelimo said. Chelimo was the runner-up in the 5,000 meters at the 2012 and 2013 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. He hopes to compete in the Olympics one day.
Kellyn Johnson, who attends college in Flagstaff, Ariz., won first place in the women’s group. She finished in 33 minutes and 18 seconds.. Johnson said her side hurt during the race but she focused on her goal of winning. "You just have to push through and keep going and you'll see the finish line eventually," said Johnson. Johnson placed 4th at the 2014 USA XC Championships in February and went on to win the NACAC XC Championships in Trindad while representing Team USA
About 100 participants also ran in costume. Some dressed as comic book characters Captain America and Superman.
Missy and Mike Murchie dressed up as movie couple Forrest Gump and Jenny from the movie “Forrest Gump.” Missy Murchie said, “We dressed in costume last year and we wanted to do it again this year. So we were trying to think of movie couples so people would recognize and thought run, Forrest, run works well for the 10K.”
“The most fun part of it was we had a lot of people cheering us, run, Forrest, run,” said Mike Murchie.
Armed with umbrellas, thousands of spectators cheered on their loved ones.
After the race, people enjoyed music and food at a festival in Monroe Park.
Money raised from the race will go towards cancer research at the Virginia Commonwealth University’s Massey Cancer Center.