Ansonia resident Tim Milenkevich regained his Commodore Hull Thanksgiving Race 5K title by finishing ahead of the field of 650 runners on Thanksgiving morning. He jumped to a very short lead over Mike Padilla who won the very first race back in 2002. They matched each other virtually stride for stride through downtown Shelton and across the Derby/Shelton Bridge into Derby. As they turned onto Elizabeth from Main Street and headed up the incline to the Derby Green, Tim started to open space between the two that would increase as the race went on. At the finish line, Tim’s lead was 13 seconds with a winning time of 16:24 (5:17 per mile pace). In his two previous championships (2012 & 2013) he ran times of 15:56 and 16:00 respectively.
Mike, now a resident of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, ran a time of 16:08 back in 2002 on a course that was different than the one currently used. James Mas of Shelton finished third with a time of 16:48.
The trio were the only runners to finish under 18 minutes.
Anna Pluta of Weston took the women’s title with a time of 19:53 (6:24 pace). 2013 winner Emily McNeil was second with a time of 20:13 while two time defending champion Lauren Flament finished third at 20:22.
There were no new course records set this year. Richard Stoliker established the men’s record in 2015 at 15:39 while the women’s record of 18:50 was set by Kristin Wenstrom way back in 2003.
This was the 15th year for the event which was started to honor the achievements of Commodore Isaac Hull who was born in Derby and also lived in Shelton. He was the commander of the U.S.S. Constitution, Old Ironsides, in the War of 1812. There were runners from 13 states and Canada in this year’s race with the youngest runner being six years old and the oldest was 82. The race has raised approximately $175,000 for the Boys & Girls club of the Lower Naugatuck Valley.
For more information as well as pictures and video, visit the race website at hullrace.org.