River Bank Run deja vu: Same man wins 5K, 10K

Female 5k, 10k winners swap spots for victory

Alex Russeau (left) and Maina Veronicah (right) were the male and female winners of the 10K Fifth Third River Bank Run. (May 14, 2016)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) – One win during the 2016 Fifth Third River Bank Run was not enough for Alex Russeau.

The Dundee man was first to cross the finish line in both the 5K and 10K races Saturday.

Russeau finished the 10K with a time of 31:02 – 17 seconds faster than last year’s finisher, Alan Peterson, who also won both races.

“It’s pure adrenaline. It’s just like, your body is totally dead but you just are running, pure adrenaline is just kicking in. You’re looking at that line like ‘Come closer, please!’ It hurts pretty bad,” he said moments after his second finish.

Russeau’s victory came about an hour after breaking the 5K finish tape with a time of 15:01.

“I kept looking back which you’re not supposed to do in racing, but I did just to make sure I had a comfortable lead and I could just kind of coast in a little bit just to try to conserve a little bit of energy for this 10K coming up,” Russeau said after his first race.

About an hour after breaking the 5K finish tape, Russeau did it again during the 10K.

“I do it for the fitness. I love the sport,” said Russeau, who runs during work breaks. “It’s just a mental reliever for me.”

Veronicah Maina was the first woman to cross the 10K finish line, with a finish time of 34:18 – about 50 seconds ahead of second place finisher Sarah Boyle of Brighton.

About an hour earlier, Boyle edged Maina out to become the women’s 5K winner, with a finish time of 16:10.

“It was competitive because I did the 5k and she was strong too. Then I said, no I have to push a little bit so that I can beat her,” said Maina, who added this was her last U.S. race before heading back to Kenya.

Boyle also won the 5K last year. She told 24 Hour News 8 she felt more comfortable during this year’s race.

“We went out quicker and I felt strong and I knew I just really wanted to press from mile 1 to 2, which I did and I kind of by myself at a point and I just tried to run that last mile hard in,” Boyle explained.

Boyle didn’t much mind the windy, cold conditions.

“I’d rather have this than 80 degrees and humid,” Boyle said.

Approximately 1,980 people registered to run this year’s 5K race. Among them was Storm Team 8’s Terri DeBoer, who finished in 39:52.

For the full list of finish times from all the  Fifth Third River Bank Run events, visit the race results page on woodtv.com.

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