Thousands Run in Great Harbor Race Despite Weather

Northport’s Great Cow Harbor 10k went off in a chilly rain Saturday, with thousands of athletes filling the streets and thousands of others lined up to cheer them.

Winners were Weini Kelati in the women’s field and Clayton Young for the men, with times of, respectively, 31:57 and 28:49. The race also served as a USATF 10 km championship. Race results.

Runners crossed the starting line in waves, based on their record of running times. Wave one was made up of elite runners, many of them professionals. By wave 15, the announcer was telling runners that they were his favorite group–while asking them not to tell anyone that–and they happily cheered their status.

Others ran with relatives, work colleagues, or those with a connection, such as triumph over illness. A number of firefighters ran decked out in full gear. Still others wore costumes or parts of costumes reflecting the Cow Harbor theme. Some wore ponchos or trash bags substituting for rainwear, while many others wore caps or windbreakers to ward off the inclement weather. At least three men ran bare-chested.

Those watching cheered on runners with shouts, cheers, music and the clang of small cow bells.

Volunteers from various groups, including a Huntington Hospital group led by  Dr. Nick Fitterman that handed out Northwell-branded towels as runners crossed the finish line, helped out, and other volunteers supplied water.

With an event that large, surprises and twists would seem to be inevitable. This year, Justin Buell pulled off a marriage proposal just past the finish line, surprising his intended, Lexie Atherton of Northport, who accepted. She then put on a sash supplied by friends that read, “I said yes.”

At one point during the race, some news photographers aboard a truck just in front of the runners began yelling to the vehicles at the front of the race to speed up, since runners were quickly gaining on them.

The event included a virtual run and a 2k fun run/walk.

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