By Teresa Varley
A crisp and sunny morning was the perfect setting for the 21st annual Gatorade/Steelers 5K Race, Fitness Walk and Kids Kickoff Run at Heinz Field on Sunday.
The conditions were perfect for runners and that was ideal as a record crowd of 3,013 participants took place.
Former Steelers wide receiver John Stallworth served as the chairman for the race, encouraging participants and greeting runners at the finish line on the Heinz Field track.
"I think it was a great day," said Stallworth. "We had more participants than we ever had. It's really growing."
Ryan Sheehan, originally from Pittsburgh, shattered the course record, finishing first with a time of 14:41. He was followed by Jay Dolmage of Morgantown, WV at 15:15; Steve Strelick from Allison Park, Pa. at 15:30; Ian Fitzgerald of Glenshaw, Pa at 15:34 and Sean Kennedy of Pittsburgh at 15:36.
On the ladies side Leah Shouey of Monroeville, Pa., finished first with a time of 18:01. She was followed closely by Allison Lasnicki of Cazenovia, New York at 18:21; Jessica Gangjee from Pittsburgh at 18:32; and Pittsburgh's Kristen Balogh at 18:37 and Kateyln Baldys at 18:56.
The top finisher in the men's and women's division won a trip for two to the Steelers-Browns game in Cleveland on December 10. Prizes were also awarded in other divisions.
The Kids Kickoff run was an opportunity for youngsters to have fun, running a 40-yard dash along the South end zone of Heinz Field.
The annual event benefits the Art Rooney Scholarship Fund, which awards a college grant to students at each of the three North Side high schools.
For complete results from the race, visit Gatorade/Steelers 5K Results.