New Yorker tops Murdick’s 5 Mile Run the Chop road race

The 14th annual Run the Chop road race raised almost $11,000 for Island youth organizations.

Winner Taylor Burmeister completed the five mile race in 27 minutes and 33 seconds. — Photo by Michael Cummo

A total of 418 registered runners participated in the 14th annual Murdick’s Run the Chop 5-mile road race on Friday morning, July 4. Many sported patriotic colors as they kicked off from the starting line at the Tisbury elementary school, ran out to West Chop and circled back to the school to raise money for youth organizations on Martha’s Vineyard.

Taylor Burmeister of New York City finished first with a time of 27:33. Josh Soon, of Washington, D.C., came in second with 28:09, and Ben Bosworth of Dorchester Center placed third with 28:30. Grace Chang of Media, Penn., was the first woman to complete the race, placing 15th overall with a time of 33:39. The best time for an Island resident was Lee Greathouse of Oak Bluffs, who placed 4th with a time of 29:40.

“All the money goes to kids on the Island,” said Murdick’s Fudge general manager Michael McCourt in a telephone conversation with The Times. “We take 100 percent of the entry fees and give it to the kids, split between the Martha’s Vineyard Boys & Girls Club and the Martha’s Vineyard Rotary Club, which donates to kids charities on the Island. Murdick’s pays all the expenses.”

Entry was $20 before July 4th and $25 on the day of the race. “We had 457 runners register and more than 400 actually ran,” said Mr. McCourt. “We raised over $10,700.”

He was incredibly grateful for the volunteers. “The volunteers are what make it happen, and we had about 40,” he said. “Without the volunteers this would never happen. Peter Lambos, the director of the Boys & Girls Club, he’s huge, so is Kathy O’Sullivan, she’s volunteered on more road races than anyone, she did the registration, making sure everyone had a number. Joe and Marylee Schroeder, they do an outstanding job timing the runners. I’d also like to thank the Tisbury selectmen for allowing us to do this race 14 times since we started in 2000, and the police department for escorting the race through town. The EMTs were great too. They had cold towels for the runners as they passed the finish line — a really cool touch.”

Mr. McCourt remembers his anxiety the night before the race. “I had my fingers crossed, my eyes crossed, hoping for the weather to be okay,” he said, referencing Hurricane Arthur, which was predicted to hit Martha’s Vineyard on July 4. “Aside from being a little muggy, it ended up being perfect. Turnout was great and we were so lucky with the weather.”

The top runners and their scores were:

1. Taylor Burmeister, New York City, NY, 27:33.00;

2. Josh Sohn, Washington, D.C., 28:09.00
3. Ben Bosworth, Dorchester Center, MA, 28:30.00
4. Lee Greathouse, Oak Bluffs, MA, 29:40.00
5. Michael Schroeder, West Tisbury, MA, 29:46.00
6. Sidney Field, Leverett, MA, 30:21.00
7. Jeremy Alley-Tarter, Edgartown, MA, 31:23.00
8. Rene Da Silva, Vineyard Haven, MA, 31:55.00
9. Scott Bosworth, Dorchester Center, MA, 32:27.00
10. Ben Urnston, Sherborn, MA, 32:59.00
11. Mark Desautelle, Oak Bluffs, MA, 33:04.00