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Bill Gould nipped Jeff Hayes in a virtual photo finish to win the first annual Chestnut Hill Cross Country classic on September 21. Colleen Farrell won first place in the women's division.

Bill Gould (L) is congratulated by race director Paul Hines for his first place finish. More Photos

Gould, who is the coach of the Cardinal Docherty cross country team, completed the three-mile course in 16:19:04 to defeat Chestnut Hill resident Hayes by a mere two-tenths of a second. The pair fought side by side down the home straightaway before the finish.


Farrell of Gwynedd-Mercy Academy ran the course in a swift 19:36:02, finishing 20 seconds ahead of women's runner-up Ashley Corby of Methacton High School.

More than 70 runners competed in the event which was held under sweltering sunshine over the Chestnut Hill Academy cross country course. The field included Wissahickon Wanderers, Valley Forge Striders, Bryn Mawr Running Club members, and Philadelphia Masters as well as runners from Arcadia College and a number of local high school teams.

Top Wanderers finisher was Chris Moore in 19:51:05 which earned him 16th place followed by Mike Branca in 18th with a time of 20:00:04. Stephanie Peteraf ran an impressive Wanderers debut fiinishing 29th in 21:36. Other strong Wanderers performances were turned in by Sally Gordon, Josephine DePalma and Pam Zisselman.

The race was was organized in conjunction with Chestnut Hill Academy and with the assistance of CHA coach Paul Hines. The course followed the perimeter of the CHA athletic fields and then continued around the Philadelphia Cricket Club golf course before finishing with another circuit of the CHA fields. With the undulating hills on the golf course and the heat in the high 80's, the race tested the endurance of all the runners.

The open race followed an interscholastic race which included more than 10 local high school teams. With all the competitors and many family members from the earlier race watching the race, there was plenty of encouragement for the runners in the Chestnut Hill Classic.

Many area runners commented on the lack of cross country races for adults in the Delaware Valley region. Hopefully, the Chestnut Hill Classic will help to fill this void.

A special thanks to Paul Hines and to Leslie Turchetti of the Wanderers for helping to organize the event. Leslie was a star helping to register, photographing and organizing the results among many other duties.

View the results here.

View the Photo Gallery here.

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