As with other running events across the country, Get in Gear doesn't just recognize its top overall finishers in each event. GIG also recognizes the top men, top women and top finishers in these age groups: 14 and under, 15 to 19, 20 to 24, 25 to 29, 30 to 34, 35 to 39, 40 to 44, 45 to 49, 50 to 54, 55 to 59, 60 to 64, 65 to 69, and 70 and above.
There is cumulative prize money for each of the top finishers in the 10K. The top male and female in the open category get $1,000 each, with $500 going to the second finisher and $250 to the third finisher. The respective prizes in the master's category are $500, $250 and $100. There are also bonus prizes of $200 for finishing under 30 minutes (male) or 34 minutes (female), and $500 for setting a new course record. Whether or not you're the top overall, you could also get a $50 incentive bonus for being first in your age group.
Those top runners aren't the only winners on race day. GIG has corporate team awards in certain age groups for the 5K, 10K and half marathon. GIG also gives out special race-day-only prizes for randomly-selected participants, including gift certificates and promotional items.
As of this writing, no female runners have set a new GIG course record for the 10K since three-time top female and champion marathon runner Janis Klecker in 1992 (32:52). Alemtsehay Misganaw of New York, NY, is a recent three-time winner, taking the top female spot in 2007, 2009 and 2010. Her 2007 time was just 6 seconds shy of Klecker's course record. Janice Ettle dominated from 1981-1991, taking the top female spot five times in those years. Other multi-year top females include Jan Arenz (1978, 1979), Deb Gormley (1995, 1996, 1998), Kelly Keeler (1999, 2000) and Lynbol Kremleva (2002, 2003).
Jonah Koech set the current GIG 10K course record for males in 1994 with a time of 28:45. Koech is a native Kenyan and a respected track-and-field star from Iowa State University. The 2010 top spot went to Richard Kandie from Coon Rapids, Minn. The males have repeat winners, too, including Dan Held (1991, 1992, 1993), Jared Segera (1999, 2003, 2004) and the recent two-time winner Sammy Malakwen (2008, 2009) who shares Koech's Kenyan heritage.
For more on 10Ks and other distance running topics, run over the links on the next page.