gearing for Gate River Run 15K
Annual Jax 15k: 20,000+ runners, March 9
By Randy Lefko
JACKSONVILLE-Orange Park master’s runner John Metzgar kept his opponents guessing for yet another upcoming Gate River Run 15km race as the wily veteran placed third overall Saturday at the Daily’s Ortega River Run while two of the three Steinbergs of Fleming Island, David and John, duked it out one last time before the March 9 showdown in Jacksonville.
In the five miler, Metzgar took third overall in a quick 28 minutes, 16 seconds split behind the top two finishers, David Martinson, 36, and Shawn Williams, 37, both of Jacksonville, who finished in 27:57 and 28:13, respectively. In the 2011 Gate River Run 15km, Metzgar battled Fleming Island’s Sean McCormack in a classic mano-a-mano death march that put McCormack on top of the 45-49 age group with a 51:22 time with Metzgar second just 27 seconds behind. In 2010, Metzgar won the 45-49s in 53:14.
For the women at the Ortega River Run, former U.S. Olympic marathoner Kim Pawelek Brantley, 38, of Jacksonville, was top runner in 30:15.
For David Steinberg, 21, who finished in 10th overall in 30:36 for first in his age group, his run was a good indicator that his recent Disney Marathon debut effort (a 3:15 finish) has receded from his legs and has put his training pointed toward a fast Gate River Run 15km. Steinberg’s father, John, 53, stayed with David until three miles but ran out of spring after that with a 15th place, tops in age group 31:13 finish. "He definitely had more spring in his legs for this one," said John Steinberg. "He was just ahead of me at the mile at 5:40, but looked very smooth. I think he is fully recovered from the Disney race."
For David Steinberg, a hard effort at the Ortega race was paramount for him to be mentally prepared for March 9’s Gate River Run 15km where he will not only but his father and his younger brother Luke, a student at University of Central Florida, and also a distance runner. In last year’s Gate River Run, David Steinberg (59:34) topped brother Luke (1:04:27) while John stayed on the sidelines with a hip ailment. In the 2007 River Run 15km, before his hip ailment kicked in, John Steinberg was second master’s in a fast 50:40.
"This year, you better be at the top of the Hart Bridge because there could be Steinberg’s three wide barreling down to the finish," said John Steinberg, a former top-ranked collegiate runner. "For me, it is something special to have the opportunity to watch my sons compete right next to me although I hope they are behind me at the end."
STAFF PHOTOS BY RANDY LEFKO
Green Cove Springs runner Brenton Graham, 28, finishes third mile just past Ortega Bridge on US Highway 17 en route to fifth in age group finish in 28:45.
Read 258 times
Published in Sports
David Steinberg, No. 442, and John Steinberg, No. 443, take off from start of Daily’s Ortega River Run five mile race Saturday morning in Jacksonville. David Steinberg outdid his dad, John, with a 10th overall finish with John in at 15th overall.
Eight year old Luke Gould of Middleburg takes off at start of Daily’s Ortega River Run five mile run Saturday morning in Jacksonville with nearly 2,000 runners around him. Gould finished 21st in his age group in 58 minutes, 58 seconds.