Maybe Terry Melloy should start doing full marathons at the Blue Nose International Marathon more often.
After three years of running the half, Melloy finally did a full at the Blue Nose and came away the winner on Sunday.
The Bridgewater native dethroned defending champ and three-time winner David MacLennan, capping a weekend that saw more than 8,000 participants in the fifth annual Blue Nose.
“Every year, I look at running the full and then change my mind,” said Melloy, who won the half marathon at the Blue Nose in 2006 and finished third in 2005 and 2007. “I guess I picked the right year to give it a try. I had a lot of fun with it. The crowd was great and the fans really helped keep me going when it was getting tough.”
The 48-year-old physical education teacher at Bridgewater Elementary School only started running five years ago, but has won five of seven full marathons since then.
He won the Blue Nose with his third-slowest time, crossing in two hours, 48 minutes and 43 seconds, seven minutes faster than second-place Scott Clark of Summerside, P.E.I.
Clarke said Melloy took over around the 31-kilometre mark, but for Melloy, the whole run was a blur.
“Going across the bridge (to Dartmouth) I was in fifth place and I don’t even know what happened,” Melloy said. “I don’t know where everybody went but I got up there and they said I was in the lead. Everybody just kind of disappeared.”
MacLennan, who placed sixth with a time of 3:11:39.2 said his “legs were like jelly from the get-go” and said “not enough training” cost him his fourth Blue Nose win.
“He’s getting old,” joked Melloy, three years MacLennan’s senior.
Bedford’s Pierre Laberge placed third in 3:07:09.6; Dartmouth’s Dave Nevitt came fourth in 3:08:24.4; and Murray Lowery-Simpson of Hanwell, N.B., came fifth.
“I’m surprised with the win,” Melloy said. “There were five people who had run 2:50 marathons. It was the best field they’ve ever had and I was surprised to come out on top.”
Leah Jabbour of Clayton Park took her second consecutive female title in 3:17:12.5, although she didn’t find out until about an hour after the race. Another runner finished before Jabbour, but a wrong turn invalidated her winning time.
“When you’re on the race route you have no idea where you’re finishing,” said Jabbour, who was told all along she was in second. “I assumed I was No. 2 and I ran the best I could.”
Dartmouth’s Sebastien Flynn won the half in 1:13:32.5. Bedford’s Robyn Erickson was the top woman in 1:24:53.6.
Halifax natives Philip Rasmussen and Emily Hamilton won the men’s and women’s titles in the 10-kilometre race, while Middleton’s James Hayward and Halifax’s Eskedar Temesgen captured the five-kilometre crowns.