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Aaron Sharp, a 2008 qualifier for the United States Olympic Trials, bettered his time from last year to defend his title at the 2014 Santa Anita Derby Day 5K.
Sharp won in 15 minutes, 1 seconds - two seconds faster than in 2013 - to capture the 20th running of this classic 5K. Sharp, 35, from Port Hueneme, averaged better than 4:50 per mile.
Meanwhile, Ashley Ramirez of Oxnard was also a run-away winner at Santa Anita Park. Ramirez won the women's title in 17:48.
Sharp repeats as men's winner
Ramirez wins women's title in 2014 Santa Anita Derby Day 5K
Runners charge out of the starting gate at the Santa Anita Derby Day 5K. Some 15 minutes, 1 second later, Aaron Sharp (right) defended his title. Scott Christopher Stolarz Photography photos.
ARCADIA, April 5, 2014 - With Aaron Sharp and Ashley Ramirez leading the way, more than 5,500 runners and walkers added a spectacular chapter to the history of the 20th annual Santa Anita Derby 5K.
"This," said race director Kathy Kinane of Kinane Events, "was fantastic, one of the best races we've ever had."
Under ideal conditions, Sharp and Ramirez proved that perhaps the most scenic 5K course in the Los Angeles area also is fast. Sharp's winning men's time of 15:01 bettered his time of last year, while Ramirez' first-place women's time of 17:48 was almost a minute faster than the winning women's time in 2013.
Behind them, a long line of runners and walkers completed a course that began in an official Santa Anita Park horse racing gate, went through the L.A. County Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, and finished down the famous homestretch of Santa Anita.
On hand to enjoy it was the man whose vision helped create the race 20 years ago, Pete Siberell, Santa Anita Park Director of Special Projects.
"The Derby Day 5K has become an annual tradition for hard core runners and more casual joggers and walkers, especially among families wanting to do things together," Siberell recently told the Arcadia Weekly. "We put on a well organized event over an attractive race course and have something for everyone after the race! Lots of food, drink (a beer garden helps), entertainment and most importantly, a great card of Thoroughbred horse racing.
"In short, we have grown the event from under 1,000 people to well over 5,000 over the years," Siberell added. "Word has gotten around, and people like to come back!"
Running through the Arboretum.
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