Discover Whitewater Series a racing success

Runners of the Discover Whitewater Series Half Marathon started their race socially distanced from one another while wearing masks as a safety precaution. See more photos in the Sept. 24 Whitewater Register. (Bob Mischka photo)

The Discover Whitewater Series: Half Marathon and 5K’s eighth annual event took place on Sunday, Sept. 20 and was a huge success according to organizers, with 300 runners and over 100 volunteers from all over.

Everyone came together to put on an athletic, community event, they said.

Race organizers commended community members for making the event safe for runners, volunteers and creating a healthy atmosphere.

“Thank you to everyone for making the eighth annual event such a success,” a news release states. “The safety of participants, volunteers and the entire Whitewater community were the top priority of this event and, thanks to everyone’s cooperation, the DWS team was able to hold a fun and safe event.”

Unlike previous years, the race brought a different look as face masks were required for everyone, except for runners, to mitigate COVID-19.

The runners, however, put on face masks once races were completed.

“From start to finish everything felt safe and controlled, and truly this event was an awesome opportunity to get participants out during and do physical activity,” said 5K participant Tiffany Pernat. “In a time when motivation is really hard to find, this was a huge victory.”

The DWS is a charity event and designated proceeds from the race go to five local charities: Bethel House, Whitewater Unified School District, Whitewater LEADS, J-Hawk Aquatic Club and Working for Whitewater’s Wellness (W3).

The top three men and top three women received awards for the half marathon and 5K runs.

In the half marathon, which drew participation from 114 runners, Palmyra’s Stacey Kincaid, 43, won the female event with a time of 1:25:33:10 followed by second place finisher Lisa Mautz, 42, of Delafield, who completed the race in 1:28:54.43. Paulina Fote, 25, of Port Washington, notched third at 1:31:52.67.

Kincaid notched seventh overall in the half marathon.

For the men, Michael Hatter, 21, of Brodhead, won the half-marathon with a registered time of 1:14:22.88. Samba Binagi, 31, Milwaukee, placed second at 1:18:37.84 while Whitewater’s John Ejnik, 52, finished third at 1:21:45.43.

The 5K run, meanwhile, brought in 118 participants.

For the women, Mount Horeb’s Anna Ollendick, 17, won the 5K race with a time of 20:50.48. Heidi Mane, 37, Whitewater, placed second at 21:27.18 and Samantha Benson, 16, Milton, finished third with a time of 21:38.75.

Ollendick finished seventh among all participants.

Austin Depuydt, 17, East Troy, captured the men’s 5K race and crossed the finish line at 16:26.59. Mark Elworthy, 50, Whitewater, finished second with a time of 16:41.91. Monroe’s Heath Huschitt, 17, placed third at 17:39.73.

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