Run for Lobster: Chilmark Road Race Attracts All Ages on Hot and Hazy Day
Jacob Kramer

Boarding the shuttle from Beetlebung Corner to the starting line of the 28th annual Chilmark Road Race on Saturday, one could smell the excitement.

The excitement, as it happened, smelled like 50 sweaty runners in a school bus. Race officials blared Highway to Hell by AC/DC in the background, a subtle nod to the day's combination of 90 degree heat and 80 per cent humidity.

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Sun-Dappled Day Draws Hundreds to Race
Rachel Nava Rohr

Looks of calm, looks of determination, looks of pain and of pride: the expressions were as varied as the runners themselves, crossing the finish line of the annual Chilmark Road Race on Saturday morning - or, for the walkers, afternoon.

Just over 1,500 people ran the race, ranging from six to 79 years old. The youngest and oldest runners finished just 14 seconds apart. Some runners were turned away toward the end of registration, since 1,500 is the town's set capacity for the race.

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Chilmark Road Race Is Summer Institution
Jacob Kramer

The Chilmark Road Race is a chimerical beast, part family-oriented charity jog, part cutthroat competition. Perhaps the contradictory spirit of the now-legendary institution was best summed up by Willy Anderson, age 10. When asked about his plans for the race, the bespectacled youth declared, "I really want to beat my mom. We'll start out together, but at the end I'll try to beat her."

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At Age 78, She Has Achieved a Doctoral Degree in Running, Not to Mention Life
Alexander Trowbridge
Susan Wilson is a runner. She runs everywhere she goes — Egypt, France, Viet Nam, England, her home in Princeton, N.J. and Chilmark. They’re all good places to accelerate her body past a walk. In fact, at 78, she was the fastest female in her age category in Chilmark Road Race last Saturday. She has won that honor 11 times, in her 60s and her 70s.
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Thousands Run for the Lobster
Alexander Trowbridge

With the sounding of the horn, some 1,600 runners in the 31st Chilmark Road Race took off. The herd shot toward the press truck like raptors in a Steven Spielberg film and the red pickup sped up to avoid being overtaken. John Ciccarelli was at the front, his face just feet from the photographers’ lenses. Behind him two boys in pink shirts attempted a 100-meter dash in the beginning of the 3.1-mile race and soon dropped off to the side.

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Loping for Lobster Again in Chilmark
Jacob Kramer

The Chilmark Road Race is about much more than speed. How many contests pit septuagenarians against seven-year-olds? How often do you see Crocs on the starting line? Where else do people doing a 20-minute mile get such an enthusiastic round of cheers?

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Chilmark Road Race Saturday Will See Exactly 1,500 Runners
Jim Hickey

When Hugh Weisman organized the first annual Chilmark Road Race some 32 years ago, he wasn’t exactly sure how many people would show up. Mr. Weisman, an avid runner who at the time was offering a clinic at the Chilmark Community Center, estimated beforehand that 200 runners might show up.

Maybe more, maybe less.

But he never imagined that the little race, stretching over five kilometers along Middle Road, would grow to become the phenomenon it is now.

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Chilmark Road Race Draws Thousands
Peter Brannen

As 1,500 runners anxiously milled about the starting line on Middle Road Saturday Morning, West Tisbury selectman Jeffrey (Skipper) Manter brandished a streamer-topped car antenna, holding it up to the sky.

“In case I need to wave down a med-flight,” he told curious fellow runners in the 34th Chilmark Road Race.

The sweat-soaked Mr. Manter had already run the course that morning in preparation for a half-marathon in Lowell and was beginning to feel the miles.

“Stay in front of me and you’ll be all right,” he said.

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Fleet-Footed Find Lobster at Finish Line
Matt Sohn

Wearing a bright orange top and neon green running shoes, David Melly was easy to spot along Middle Road on Saturday morning. Then again, it wouldn’t have been difficult to find Mr. Melly at nearly any point during the 2011 Chilmark Road Race, as the 18-year old from Newton blew away the field. His winning time of 16:22 was more than a minute faster than the time of runner-up Jake Quagiaroli of Fishers, Ind., who crossed the finish line in 17:28.

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Chilmark Road Race Starting Line Full-Up, Lobsters Remain Wary
Ivy Ashe
In the beginning, there were 254 runners toiling up and over the hills of Middle Road.
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