Celebrating 50 Years of the Granby Road Race

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Granby Road Race, photo by Paula Johnson

The 50th running of the Granby Road Race went off without a hitch in perfect weather on Sept. 18. The race, founded by David Hildreth, David Bale and Dennis Lobo in May 1971, is one of Connecticut’s oldest race events. It has been enjoyed by many runners over the past 50 years; this year being no exception. The race has 5K and 10K courses with portions of the race routes weaving through Salmon Brook Park and the McLean Game Refuge. This year’s race happened to coincide with Granby’s annual Open Farm Day, and an excellent opportunity to showcase the wonderful town of Granby.

There were 290 total registered runners. Mary Anderson took 1st for the Women’s 5K at 21:20 and Brett Abbott took 1st for the Men’s 5K at 17:37 9, breaking his own record from 2020. The winner of the Women’s 10K, Jody DiCicco, came in at 42:02 while the Men’s 10K winner, Michael Paulin, completed the course in 39:51. The top Granby finishers were Daniel Owen for the Men’s 10K and Melody Smith for the Women’s 10K. The top Granby finishers for the 5K were Brody Landheer for the Men’s 5K and Mary Anderson for the Women’s 5K.

Dennis Lobo, the surviving founder of the Granby Road Race, attended, as did Ned Hildreth and Vicki Bale Saunders on behalf of their late fathers who were also founders of the race. David Schupp, longtime advocate and leader of the Granby Road Race joined in on the festivities. The Granby Road Race Committee would like to extend a special thank you to David for making the 50th race weekend a wonderful experience for committee members, volunteers, and runners. 

The race committee marked this 50th annual race by naming areas of the course in honor and recognition of Dennis Lobo and the other founders. The “Dennis Lobo Start Line”, “Hildreth Hill” and the “David Bale Finish Line” will forever be a part of the Granby Road Race course. By starting the race and helping it to continue year after year, the founders left a lasting impact on the race and the town of Granby. The Farmington Valley YMCA and the Granby Road Race Committee are thankful to them for their contributions over the past 50 years.

The Granby Road Race is run in honor of David A. Schupp Jr., and the committee is honored to announce that the “David A. Schupp Jr. Memorial Mile” will be a permanent fixture for all future races. The race committee is grateful for the stewardship and leadership of David A. Schupp throughout the many years he has been involved in the race.

Hundreds of volunteer hours went into the successful race on Saturday and for that commitment the Granby Road Race Committee members, in particular, are recognized and thanked for their dedication and vision of the race. Without them and their efforts, the race would not be what it is. A huge thank you as well to the race day volunteers who spent the morning directing runners, providing water, and cheering on the 5K and 10K participants. And, the day would not have been complete without Brad Field at the microphone, announcing winners and acting as emcee for the special day.

The Race Committee would also like to extend thanks to the local businesses and individuals who supported the 50th road race. Your generosity and dedication to our town’s race make the race possible. Donations from the sponsors support the Farmington Valley YMCA’s Annual Campaign and the race received over $30,000 in sponsorships and race entries.

If you are interested in joining the Granby Road Race Committee or being a sponsor for the 2022 road race, please contact Brian Liss at granbyroadrace@GHYMCA.org