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Quest for record falls short but Lyon wins Burlington to Collinsville Classic for 2nd time

Tyler Lyon won the Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K for the second straight year Sunday morning in Collinsville.

CANTON, May 5 – West Hartford’s Tyler Lyon is very familiar with the course of the Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K road race. Part of the race is on the scenic Farmington River Trial, which is on the banks of the Farmington River.

“I run this course all the time,” the Harwinton native and Lewis Mills graduate said. “I know what to expect.”

Lyon raced away from the start and tried to break the course record set in 2017. Lyon became the first man to win the race in consecutive years and broke his own personal record in the 10 kilometer race (6.2 miles) by 50 seconds.

But Lyon fell 12 seconds shy of the course record time of 32: 20 set by Coventry’s Alex Norstrom two years ago.

“It was great,” Lyon said. “The rain cools you off. It’s hard when you are out there alone,” Lyon said. “But the pace bike gives you a good target (to chase).”

Lyon most of the race by himself, far ahead of the pack. Southington’s Mike Lennon finished second with a time of 36:24, nearly four minutes behind Lyon’s time of 32:42. Farmington’s Chris Chisholm, who is an assistant coach with the Canton High track and field program this spring, was third in 36:54.

“The finish is a little tough (coming) up to the (railroad) bridge (that crosses the Farmington River into Collinsville),” Lyon said. “You don’t look at your watch. You just survive.”

Canton’s Monica Mays became the first Canton runner to win the race at the Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K taking the women’s division championship Sunday.

Canton’s Monica Mays won the woman’s race with a time of 43:24. Unlike Lyon, she wasn’t familiar with the trail at all. It was her first time running in the race and on the Farmington River Trial.

Mays just moved to Connecticut from California last fall. Usually, she trains on the hills in the East Hill Road area near her home.

Mays, who was keeping pace with Windsor’s Deryk Waller who finished two seconds ahead, didn’t see any women near her as she completed the course. She finished 17th overall in a field of 655 finishers – the lowest in the four-history of the race.

Canton’s Michelle Kulak was second in the women’s race with a time of 43:31 with New York City’s Glenne Fucci taking third in 45:00.

For the second consecutive year, the race was conducted in rainy conditions. It was a steady rain – not hard — but it was consistent.

2019 Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K results

Brian Kugel of Rocky Hill makes his way to the finish Sunday despite the rain.

Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K
At Canton
Overall: 1. Tyler Lyon, West Hartford, 32:42, 2. Marc Lennon, Southington, 36:24; 3. Chris Chisholm, Farmington, 36:54; 4. James Thompson, Bristol, 38:03, 5. Karlol Szoch, Farmington, 38:25; 6. John Kennedy, Canton, 40:33; 7. Brian Kugel, Rocky Hill, 40:50; 8. Kelly Barto, Torrington, 41:03; 10. Kevin Ehlich, East Hartford, 41:56
Top women: Monica Mays, Canton, 43:24 (17th overall), 2. Michelle Kulak, Canton, 43:31 (19); 3. Glenne Fucci, New York City, 45:00 (31); 4. Katie Ascenzo, Burlington, 45:32 (35); 5. Lisa Laflerty, Milford, 46:26 (44)

Runners cross the railroad bridge into Collinsville to finish the fourth annual Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K on Sunday morning.

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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. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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