Blackstone Valley Adventure Race Winners Announced

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First place team in the master's division of UniBank's Greenway Challenge, a Northbridge team headed by Henry Lane, far right.
First place team in the master's division of UniBank's Greenway Challenge, a Northbridge team headed by Henry Lane, far right. Photo Credit: Deborah Gauthier

NORTHBRIDGE, Mass. - Winners and results of the 2012 UniBank Blackstone River Valley Greenway Challenge “Adventure Race — Like No Other,” held Sept. 29, have been announced.

The race was the largest in its 12-year history — with 457 athletes and 87 teams running, paddling, and biking in a variety of competitive and fun divisions on a seven-leg, 44.5 mile course through the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

The mission of the race is to raise the public’s awareness of the history, natural beauty, and environmental significance of the Corridor.

The official results:

Championship Division (Pure thrill of victory)

First place,  defending their 2011 championship title with the best overall time of 3:49:23 was team Great Canadian from Sutton -  Captain Dave Mingori, Astrid Trahan, Mark Trahan, Alex White and Alice McKeon.

Second Place Silver medal winners and returning for the 12th year was the Woonsocket Teachers Guild team, with a time of 4:01:24 - Captain Kevin Plouffe, Mike Lemay, Dan Gagnon, Richard Forget, Chris Gazzola and Corey Brunelle.

Bronze Medal winners, a new entry team from Hopedale and completing the course in 4:08:32 was team “Do Not Resuscitate” - Captain Rick Nelson, Doug and Mary Guertin.

Corporate Cup (Teams of co-workers from the same company or organization). A field of 13 teams entered this division.

First place was awarded to Millbury Federal Credit Union with a finishing time of 4:35:17 - Captain John Piscitelli, team members Sandra Piscitelli, Kelly Lizotte, Tom Robert, Emily Gaudet, Paul Crimlisk, John Chase, William Kerrissey and John Barron.

Second place silver Medals were awarded to returning 2011 silver medalist from RI Dept of Transportation - Captain Michael DeRotto, Jeff Martins, Sean Raymond, David Amalfitano, Ivan McTaggart and  Steven Kut completed the course in 4:35:57.

Third place bronze medals were awarded to the Greenway Challenges title Sponsor’s team “UniBank competing for the 12th year - Captain John Czebota, Steve Anderson, Jim Quitadamo, Jon Goozey, Nick Bertone, Dan Donahue, Joanne Griego and Gary Rice completed the course in 4:45:21.

All-Women Teams (Teams of all female competitors)

First place, returning 2011 Women’s Champions R.I. Department of Environmental Management’s team “RI DEM Ladies” - Captain Kate McPhearson, Marisa Desautel, Heidi Travers, Andre Madeiro, Marcella Recher, Ann Battersby and Jane Sawyers, completing in 4:51:16.

Second place went to the returning Victorious Secrets from Worcester - Captain Shirley (Cote) Shepardson, Patricia Lambert, Sharon Foster, Christina Berry, Joan Clifford and Angela Smith in 5:09:28.

Third place went to Liberty Chicks from Liberty Mutual in Hopkinton - Captain Amanda (Young) Normandeau, Jean Rineer, Angela DiDomenico, Jacqueline Ibbitson, Jessica Zent and Melissa Hurley with a time of 5:23:02.

Ironman (One male athlete with a support person)

First place Josh Flannagan from Cohasset returned to defend his 2011 Ironman title and claimed the 2012 title in 4:05;44, also third overall time, with support person Justin Dreary.

Second place silver medals went to Ironman John McCarthy from Ludlow and Crystal Popko completing in 4:33:31.

Third place bronze medal went to Cumberland, R.I.’s Ironman David Fagnant and Tim Finocchio finishing in 4:34:51.

Ironwoman (one female athlete with support person)

First place Kara Trottier (previously competing on a team) this year from Douglas, with her support person Donna St. Louis, entered the Ironwoman division and took first place with a time of 6:02:31.

Second place silver medal went to Diane Legere\, from West Boylston, with her support person Joan Recore, with a finishing time of 7:03:40.

The Masters (Senior athletes aged 50 years or older)

Returning division Champions “Fairlawn & Friends” from Whitinsville - Captain Henry Lane, Greg Ebbeling, Jeff Smith, Cary VandenAkker and Don Vescio completed the course in 4:29:14 to retain the 2012 title.

Silver medals were won by Team Hawaiian from Chepachet, R.I. - Captain Paul Brais, David Schachte, Ray Martin, Wayne Mallory, Bert Brais, and Paul Russell with a finishing time of 4:34:56.

Bronze medals went to EcoTarium’s TVFR from Worcester - Team captain Joe Hamm, Bruce Ackman, Jeff Hattem, Hirashi Morimoto, Daniel Devin, John Parker and Ray Lussier with a finishing time of 4:49:19.

Recreational (teams of up to nine members: men, women or youth aged 16 or older)

 A returning team for many years, claiming the first place title in the Recreational Division for 2012, from Mendon was the “Tri Valley Front Runners” in 4:16:03 - Team captain Rich Victor, Glen Miller, Aaron Milne, Brendon Cairney, Jlia Caruso and Jason Stock.

Silver medals went to returning 2011 second place division title team “Gang Green” from Shrewsbury - Team Captain Chris Marques, Dan Marques, Mark Hamilton, Thomas Connor, Rob Barter, Bob Branscombe and Mike Garcia completed the course in 4:17:21.

Bronze medals went to the “Late Comers” from South Grafton - Captain Pete Schotaus, Garrett Ott, Steven Segenchuck and Trent Kopopman completed the course in 4:21:24.

The race began at 9 a.m. at Diamond Hill Park in Cumberland, RI. The course included three running segments — trail (1.5 miles), street (5 miles), and cross country (4 miles); two biking segments — mountain (5 miles) and street (22 miles); and two paddle segments (3 miles and 4 miles).

Final athletes crossed the finish line at River Bend Farm in the Blackstone River and Canal Heritage State Park in Uxbridge, at 7:03 p.m.

A complete list of race results for all participating teams and individuals will be posted on the Greenway Challenge website at

The 2012 UniBank Blackstone River Valley Greenway Challenge promotes the recreational quality of life in the Blackstone River Valley. Working with the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission and other partner organizations, the Greenway Challenge, now in its 12th year, supports clean water campaigns, hiking and biking trails, wildlife projects, environmental education and development of waterway access.

UniBank is the 2012 Title sponsor. River Champions sponsors are Red Star WorldWear, the Taco/The White Family Foundation, the Telegram & Gazette, and Cumulus Media. Trail Blazer sponsors are the Whitin Community Center, MRA Multisport, the Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection, and the Massachusetts Dept. of Conservation and Recreation.

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