The McCourt Foundation welcomes 6,000 runners to Santa Monica

September 12, 2022

Sergio Reyes and Allison Lynch win Santa Monica Classic 5k; Luis Gutierrez and Franziska Vansickle win 10,000 titles; Participants benefit from a quick arrival on Ocean Ave; post-race party at the dock

SANTA MONICA – Sept. 11, 2022 /ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – The 6,000 runners and walkers who lined up at the start line of the 17th Santa Monica Classic presented by ASICS were treated to the typical California atmosphere of the South: swaying palms, crashing waves, the Ferris wheel and the party scene atop the Santa Monica Pier.

“It’s such a vibrant community,” said men’s 5k winner Sergio Reyes. “There are so many colors near the beach, very interesting people that add a lot of flair to the place. And Santa Monica is obviously very beautiful to cross.

“It’s lively and energetic, even at 8am on a Sunday. It’s great to be part of this community.

When it came to 5K, no one was faster than Reyes, who lives in Palmdale. On a wet morning, Reyes, a 40-year-old master runner, accelerated to the strip in 15 minutes and 51 seconds, at a pace of 5:07 per mile. Santa Barbara’s Cory Smith was second in 16:16.

“I felt a bit like a car wash sponge the whole ride,” Reyes added. “I was soaked. It was wet. But I crossed the finish line and luckily chose the 5K today. Running at that pace for 10 km would have been a punishment.

Allison Lynch of Venice Beach defended her title in the women’s 5k, winning in 18:51, a pace of 6:04 per mile. She finished eight seconds ahead of Deanna Erwin of Pasadena.

Lynch moved to SoCal from New England and gave props to the local racing scene.

“There are a ton of welcoming people,” she said. “It’s a fun community.”

It was a big morning for the master runners as Franziska Vansickle won the women’s 10k in 37:54, a pace of 6:06 per mile. Vansickle won by nearly two minutes with Inglewood’s Alejandra Santiago taking second in 39:44. Vansickle was born in Germany and lived the last eight years in Switzerland before recently moving to Huntington Beach.

Of the atmosphere in Santa Monica, Vansickle said, “It’s absolutely amazing. Palm trees and the ocean. It’s just exceptional. We get to run where people go on vacation.

Vansickle said the running community in Southern California is more inclusive than in Europe.

“It’s much more of a community here,” she says. “It’s much more convivial, everyone helps each other. In Europe, it’s much more competitive and more difficult.

In the men’s 10k, it was a Gutierrez-themed podium. Rancho Cucamonga’s Luis Gutierrez won in 32:12, a pace of 5:11 per mile. John Gutierrez of Santa Maria, no relation, took second in 32:32. It had been nine years since Luis ran the Santa Monica Classic and that year he opted for the 5K.

Winning in the sprint on Ocean Ave, Luis said: “We basically finished together. I just went for the kick and got it.

As for the race day surroundings, John Gutierrez watched the party unfold atop the pier, the palm trees, the ocean and said: “The finish line, man, it’s so much fun. .”

The Santa Monica Classic cares about giving back to the community. More than 25 runners participated with the TMF team, raising funds to support the McCourt Foundation, which is dedicated to finding cures for neurological diseases. For full results, photos and more, visit

About the McCourt Foundation

The McCourt Foundation (TMF) is a 501c3 organization committed to building a healthier world through research, partnerships, and education. TMF empowers individuals and communities to make a difference through its educational events and forums. Now in Los Angeles and Boston, we’ve expanded our giving capacity and global impact from coast to coast.

Since 1992, when the McCourt brothers organized a road race in honor of their father who battled multiple sclerosis, TMF has been committed to improving the lives of patients and families affected by neurological diseases (MS , ALS, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s). From this unique fundraising event, TMF expanded its mission to include youth health and wellbeing and other health challenges, and its portfolio of world-class events to include the Los Angeles Marathon. Angeles presented by ASICS, LA Big 5k, Rose Bowl Half Marathon & 5K, Santa Monica Classic 5K/10K, Boston Waterfront 5K, South Shore Tour, the McCourt Gala & Auction and the Educational Update. These nine community events attract over 100,000 attendees each year and are expertly leveraged by TMF to drive impact. For more information, please visit

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