Racing News > Long Beach, Calif.

Fellow Skaters Honor Long Beach Masters Champ
Peggy Girgenti has won the master division six times
By Planet staff

After last October's Long Beach Inline Marathon in California, the organizers — for reasons still unclear — skipped the award ceremony for inline skaters.

The top runners got medals and trips to the podium. But skaters got squat!

One of the skaters who deserved to be honored (but wasn't) was Peggy Girgenti of Anaheim Hills, Calif.

For the sixth straight year, Girgenti won the master (35 and over) women's division of the marathon.

Finally Saturday, five months after the event, she was recognized for the accomplishment — although not by the race organizers. Instead, it was her training partners at El Dorado Park in Long Beach who surprised her with a trophy before practice.

Veteran inline racer Jonathan Seutter presented the trophy, which is engraved with the words:

Long Beach Inline Marathon
Six Time Pro Masters Champion
Peggy Girgenti

The trophy also notes that Girgenti holds the Long Beach course record for master women: 1 hour, 18 minutes and 37 seconds.

Seutter made a short speech, at which point Girgenti started to cry.

Fellow skater Stephen Kenney said later, "If you win a race twice that's impressive. But six years running ... that's phenomenal!"

Aside from the Long Beach, Girgenti is a perennial contender in the Northshore Inline Marathon and other top events.

"Peggy is one of those rare individuals who is not only a very gracious winner but very gracious even when she doesn't win," Seutter said.

Skaters use the 1.7-mile loop at El Dorado Park to train on Saturday mornings.

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(Posted March 28, 2006)

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Copyright © 2006 by Robert Burnson

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