Vassallo’s Dominate the Day at Smuttynose Palooza 5k

by EJN Comments (0) Articles, Racing

By Steve Dowsett

The Vassallo’s stole the show at the Smuttynose Palooza 5k on March 7th. While most people are done competing once they cross the line, the speedy couple still had work left to do in the karaoke contest. They are as entertaining in karaoke as they are fierce in racing, which is why it’d be a shame to not cover the karaoke contest as well.

The itself race is part of the very popular Will Run For Beer Series put on by Loco Sports. Loco sports did a great job of making this race happen despite how many races on the North Shore have been cancelled due to record setting snow. While icy roads along with the public parking lot being used as a snow farm could have led to cancellation, the race committee and volunteers made the race day a success anyway. The course was rerouted and volunteers helped direct people where to park. Someone in the parking lot even dug a spot out for me while I was trying to park!

The race went right off as scheduled at 9am. The temperature was 20 degrees with a strong wind coming of the ocean. While this sounds like an appalling forecast for a March road race, it didn’t stop 848 racers from finishing. New England runners have become accustomed to training and racing in these conditions over the past few months whether they wanted to or not.

When the gun went off Dan Vassallo of CMS shot right out behind the lead vehicle with Derrick Hamel and I in chase. Dan would stay in the lead through the finish where he crossed the line in 15:35 while Derrick and I exchanged positions during the first 1.5 miles. Derrick finally pulled away during the second mile and went on to finish second in 15:53 and I held on to third in 16:16.

Dan’s wife Katrina Vassallo of Craft Concept Racing dominated the women’s race, breaking the tape in 18:04. Katrina comfortably won by a margin of almost 3 minutes over Carmela Taveras, who was the top master on the women’s side. The top master on the men’s side was Alan Pimental, who was 25th overall at 20:03.

While the racing was done in under an hour the competition didn’t stop there. This race featured a karaoke contest with cash prizes. While Dan and Katrina Vassallo have both won this race multiple times they had not taken the top spot in the karaoke contest and this year they were out for redemption. They took to the stage and performed Angel by Shaggy. Dan can do a surprisingly impressive Shaggy impression and it was enough for them to take home their second win of the day. If you weren’t lucky enough to witness it in person we have the video here so the Level Legion can see Dan and Katrina’s talents aren’t limited to running fast.

This was my first trip to a Loco Race and I was very pleased. I picked up a backpack full of gear and a Smuttynose gift certificate for my efforts and I know they had prizes for all the age groups too. Along with the prizes there was free pizza and Smuttynose beer for all finishers. My decision to go to the race was last minute but in the future I plan on checking out some of their other events.

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