Timm, Myers top 8K cross country run



Paul Timm and Denise Myers slogged through mud and slippery asphalt to win the 8K run of the Inaugural Open & Masters Cross Country Championship last Saturday in the perimeter line of the Francisco M. Palacios/Saipan International Airport.

Timm, who is a college roommate of inaugural 1-mile run winner Keith Ketola, was the fastest in the trail run after crossing the finish line in 36:39. He was followed by Daniel Li in 37:11, while NMI national athletics team member Sildrey Viloria completed the Top 3 with his 37:47.

The 26-year-old Timm said it was sweet to win his first official race on Saipan.


“It was a blast! I was a little worried when it was getting to 6 o’clock and it was still dark and it was rainy. I was thinking I would get lost for sure. But then you know, the sun came out and we had some strong guys to run with from the beginning so it was really fun.”

Timm said while it wasn’t his fastest 8K, he was still happy with his time considering the race conditions.

“I think that it would be hard for anyone to run their best time for how muddy and wet it was,” said the 26-year-old from Colorado.

As for his good friend Ketola, Timm kind of threw out a challenge to his fellow St. Olaf College track and field member as he is planning to stay on Saipan for Run Saipan’s half marathon.

“If Keith will challenge me in the half marathon, I think I have a chance. But I think he would crush me in the mile run,” he said.

Myers, for her part, dominated the women’s division after crossing the finish line in 37:23. She was followed by Commonwealth Ports Authority executive director Kimberlyn King-Hinds and Rosemarie Chisato with times of 40:41 and 43:00, respectively. 

The silver medalist of the 2022 Mini Games steeplechase said running around the airport perimeter fence was a nice change for Run Saipan events.

“It was great. Following the fence lines was really fun. You get to see where you’re going and you can kind of tell where you’re at, right? So it’s fun because it’s not a turnaround. We don’t have to look at the same things over and over again.” 

Unlike Timm, the 33-year-old health and physical education instructor at the Northern Marianas College actually liked the rain-drenched course.

“The weather was perfect. It poured down rain before we started. But right before the race started, it cleared up and then nice, it was overcast,” she said.

Myers thanked the running community and all the volunteers of Run Saipan and Northern Marianas Athletics for helping organize the event, unofficially dubbed the Saipan International Airport Trail Run 2022.

In the 8K masters division, Joshua Castro topped the men’s division with a run of 57:59, while Terra Allen and Kathy Ruszala were 1-2 in the women’s with times of 47:17 and 50:05, respectively.

The women’s 40-44 saw Sheila Mabutas come first in 58:05 with Kathleen Tolentino next in 1:01.17.

Rommel Bartolo was first in the men’s 40-49 in 46:09 followed by CNMI national triathlete Leo Wania in 47:33 and Napoleon Dizon in 49:47.

Pastor Matthew Furan was furious in the 50-54 age group, as he blazed the trail in 41:50. Raymund Tolentino and James Abuy completed the Top 3 in 46:25 and 50:54, respectively.

Elizabeth Church was the fastest in the women’s 50-54 with a time of 47:40 with Jessica Ortizo (48:42) and Maritess Bartolo (49:11) completing the Top 3.

Dr. Ron Snyder continued to rule the 55-59 age group as he tore the tape in 46:01 with Floro Derexes coming second in 1:01.02. Maria Ornes was the lone participant in the women’s 55-59 and she finished the race in 1:09.35. 

The 60 and over division was dominated by barefoot runners Chong Nam Lee and Changwan Jang as they came in at 40:45 and 45:04, respectively. Paul Khang was third in 1:09.35. Juanita Fajardo was the lone entry for yje women and she finished in 1:10.47.

Results of the 5K cross country run will be published in tomorrow’s edition of Saipan Tribune.

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at Mark_Rabago@saipantribune.com

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