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Robaczynski wins two road races in six hours; Jones sets new course record

Runners take off at the start of the 12th annual Avon Road Race Sunday. Marc Robaczynski and Marisa Jones each won the third time.

Runners take off at the start of the 12th annual Avon Road Race Sunday. Marc Robaczynski and Marisa Jones each won the third time.

AVON, May 15 – Avon runner Marc Robaczynski had a busy Sunday. In the morning, he won the 12th annual Avon Road Race for the third time in four years with a winning time of 16:54.6 over 3.1 miles.

It was a nice warmup for his next run. In the afternoon, Robaczynski, 41, won the sixth annual Shine on 5K road race (3.1 miles) at Lewis Mills in Burlington with a course record time of 16:42. The Avon Road Race began at 8:30 a.m. with the Shine on 5K kicking off at 1 p.m.

“Two (races) in a day is a bit of a stretch for an old man,” Robaczynski joked after the winning in Avon. “But it’s for another good cause.” The Shine On 5K benefits the Karen DuCotey Fund for Kids, named in honor of the late Lake Garda Elementary School teacher who passed away in 2010.

Marisa Jones (585) and Marc Robaczynski are among the leaders early in Sunday's Avon Road Race.

Marisa Jones (586) and Marc Robaczynski are among the leaders early in Sunday’s Avon Road Race.

Robaczynski enjoys the Avon Road Race, which begins at Pine Grove School, runs up Scoville Road to the Farmington Valley River trail and back through several neighborhoods before ending up at Pine Grove for the finish.

“It’s just a great event,” he said. “It’s a great school. Everyone is outgoing and friendly and they do a great job promoting it. It’s also fun to run on the roads you jog on each day. You don’t have to worry about getting lost.”

Another local athlete had an exceptional day at the Avon Road Race. Avon’s Marisa Jones won the women’s race with a course record time of 17:32, breaking the mark of 18:02 that she set a year ago. Jones, who finished second behind Robaczynski, won the race for the third time in four years. The second place finish is the best by a woman in the race since Jones took third in 2013.

Jones was a collegiate runner at Springfield College in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. She has been racing more in the past few years. A week ago, she won the Race for the Cure in New Britain.

Jones was accompanied by her husband Troy and their two sons, Ryder and Beckett.

As usual, there were plenty of youngsters in the race and running in the Sandy Jarem Memorial Fun Run – races of a quarter mile, a half mile and one mile in the Pine Grove fields behind the school.

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Families ran together Sunday.

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Friends ran together.

There was plenty of encouragement for the runners.

There was plenty of encouragement for the runners.

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Classmates cheering each other at the finish.

Sandy was a long-time secretary in the Pine Grove office who passed away in February 2015. Proceeds from refreshments sold at the race went to the Sandy Jarem scholarship fund.

“Everything went really well,” said Ashley Backmann, the chair of this year’s race organizing committee.

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Runners race to the finish.

2016 Avon Road Race
At Avon
Top 10 overall: 1. Marc Robaczynski, 16:54.6 for 3.1 miles; 2. Marisa Jones, 17:32.0 (new course record. Old Mark, Jones, 18:02, 2015); 3. Nicola Beretta, 17:51.6, 4. Bill Thramann, 18:35.5, 5. Alan Fosberry, 19:25.3, 6. John Meaney, 19:55.7, 7. Alexey Lyashenko, 20:04.4, 8. Suit Dickson, 20:06.1, 9. Christian Winkley, 20:16.2, 10. Blea Vincent, 20:20.1

Top 10 women: 1. Marisa Jones (2nd overall), 17:32.0 (new course record. Old record, Jones, 18:02, 2015); 2. Summer Yule (34) 23:40.7, 3. Kelly Nevins (35) 23:45.0, 4. Madison Sides (36) 23:57, 5. Jessa Sahl (48) 24:56.4, 6. Sofia Preuss (49) 24:59, 7. Taury Miller (54) 25:10.6, 8. Erin Klotz (64) 25:56.6, 9. Zoe Werner (66) 26:19, 10. Audrey Wallace (67) 26:21.1

2016 Avon Road Race results

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years.

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