With fair weather affording a clear view of the New York skyline, participants ran along a course that stretched along the Hudson River Walkway and across to Liberty State Park with views of views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the Verrazano Narrows Bridge in the background.
The Newport Liberty Half Marathon follows a USA Track & Field certified course and with generally flat terrain is considered a fast course.
Runners competed for the $3,000 that went to winning runners and teams in specific USATF-NJ categories, with proceeds donated to Jersey City Medical Center – RWJ Barnabas Health.
A post-race celebration took place at Newport Town Square with refreshments, music and drawings for a host of prizes.
Runners began and ended the 13-mile run in the Newport section of Jersey City. The course cut inland so runners could make their way to Liberty State Park. This year the half marathon took runners along Town Square Place, Washington Boulevard, Grant Street, Johnston Avenue and Hudson Street.
Traditionally, participants in the half-marathon will come from all over northern New Jersey and are not limited to Newport or Jersey City residents. But many this year came from other states as well as other nations, which local officials say raising the visibility of the Newport community along the waterfront. Home to several high-rise developments and a popular mall, the Newport area has over the past year hosted a number of cultural events designed to foster more of a neighborhood feel in the area.
Newport features many cultural and recreational amenities and free outdoor activities, including concerts, dance lessons, a soccer showcase, marathon races, as well as special events like its annual Newport Beach Party, which showcases many of the restaurants at Newport.
Traditionally, participants in the half-marathon will come from all over Northern New Jersey and are not limited to Newport or Jersey City residents.
This year’s first place winner was Joshua Lzewski of Doylestown, Pa. Lzweski completed the 13.1 miles run with a time of 1:11:46.65. In second place, Lucas Giugliano, 22, of Sparta, clocked in at 1:12:13.60. The top woman finisher, and third place overall finisher, was 27-year-old Sairi Maeda, of Ikeda, Japan, with a time of 1:12:48.32.
A number of local runners finished within the top 100. These included Will Appman, 27, of Hoboken, who finished 5th; Stephen Rathbun, 25, of Hoboken, 13th; David Hollinger, 42, of Union City, 18th; Jacks Khawaja, 42, of Jersey City, 24th; Segundino Cardines, 46, of Jersey City, 31st; Ivan Krga, 45, of Jersey City, 47th; Mario Souza, 54, of Jersey City, 50th; Nicholas Williams, 31, of Union City, 57th; Michael Benvenuto, 33, of Jersey City, 60th; Mike Lockmeyer, 40, of Hoboken 61st; Brian Chin, 24, of Hoboken, 68th; T.J. Berardo, 31, of Jersey City, 82nd; David Small, 46, of Hoboken, 90th; Chris Flores, 30, of Bayonne, 91st; Michael Tornello, 28, of Jersey City, 92nd; and Matthew Bermingham, 29, of Jersey City, 97th.
Friends and family lined the streets to cheer on runners as they made their way through the course. Kevin Williamson, the Director of Recreation for Jersey City, delivered opening and closing remarks.
Al Sullivan may be reached at email@example.com.