Columbus, March 3, By Matt McGowan - The 23rd annual Arnold 5K Pump & Run was one of the events held during the 36th annual Arnold Sports Festival.  1,000 athletes registered for the Arnold 5K Pump & Run from twenty-seven States, Washington D.C. and Canada. This event is the largest of its' kind in the World.

Arnold was on hand to start the race on High Street by the Arnold Schwarzenegger statue. The race ran towards downtown and looped around the town before finishing on High Street in front of Greater Columbus Convention Center.

Before the runners started their run they spent the morning weighing in and bench pressing to reduce their running times. The lifting rules were: Men 39 and under bench pressed 100% of their weight, men 40 - 49 did 90% of their weight, men 50 -59 benched 80% of their weight, men 60-69 did 70% and men 70 and over lifted 60%. Women 39 and under benched pressed 70% of their weight, women 40 - 49 benched 60% of their weight, women 50-59 benched 50% of their weight and women 60 and over lifted 40%. For each lift a runner's time was reduced by 30 seconds with a maximum of 30 reps counted.

Waverly’s Zach Holbert (37) returned to the winner circle as he maxed out the 30 lifts and ran 16:26 to win in 1:26.  Last year’s winner and a numerous top five finisher Maryland’s Vaughn O’Brien (48) had 30 lifts and ran 16:49 to take home runner up honors in 1:59.  Cincinnati’s Larremy Gray (41) had 30 lifts and a run time of 17:25 to capture the bronze in 2:25.  Alabama’s Matthew Mullens (43) recorded 30 lifts and a run time of 17:42 to record a time of 2:42 for fourth.  Avon’s Frank Rizzo (25) had 29 lifts and took home fifth for the second year in a run with a run time of 17:58 and a finish time of 3:28.

Oregon’s George Totonchy (46) recorded 30 lifts and ran 18:36 to finish sixth in 3:36.  Minnesota’s Alec Blenis (29) had 29 lifts and a run time of 18:08 to place seventh in 3:36. Kentucky’s Eddie Neel (40) maxed out the 30 lifts and ran 18:41 for eighth in 3:41.  Brookville’s (35) Charles McNew had 30 lifts and ran 18:46 to finish ninth in 3:46.  Columbus’ Nathan Aichele (42) recorded 30 lifts and ran 19:04 to round out the top ten.

Michigan’s Lisa Veneziano (59) recorded 30 lifts and a run time of 18:09 to finish fifth overall on her way to her eleventh Arnold 5K Pump & Run gold with a final time of 3:09.  Mayfield Village’s Jordyn Musi (25) recorded 30 lifts and a run time of 19:27 to take home the silver in 4:27.  Delaware’s Claire Malbone (50) recorded 30 lifts and a 20:31 run time to finish third in 5:31. Virginia’s Allison Bowersock (41) had 29 lifts and a time of 20:16 to place fourth in 5:46. Columbus’ Marla Antunes (29) had 27 lifts and a 20:51 to finish fifth in 7:21.  

Enon’s Kimberly Wise (53) had 30 lifts and a run time of 22:35 while Worthington’s Kathy Gertler (55) also ran 22:35 and recorded 30 lifts to tie for sixth with a finish time of 7:35.  Columbus’ Mallery Ingmire (40) maxed out the 30 lifts and ran 23:04 to place eighth in 8:04. Canal Winchester’s Jessica Heren (49) record 30 lifts while running 23:06 to finish ninth in 8:06.  Akron Charlee Quinn (44) record 30 lifts and ran 24:03 to place tenth in 9:03.

Columbus Running Company’s Andy Harris and staff timed the event after Jeff McGowan passed.  Harris and Heath Gibson served as race directors for the third year with the help of his staff and volunteers.  Matt McGowan and Tim Pancher the co-race directors for the first twenty years served in an advisory capacity.

Jim Lorimer, co-founder of the Arnold Classic passed  on Thanksgiving Day in 2022, he was 96. Lorimer was an attorney and Special Agent of the FBI who organized the Arnold Sports Festival since 1989. After assignments in three different FBI field offices, he moved to the private sector joining Columbus Nationwide Insurance for a 37-year career where he served as Vice President of Government Relations and established that company’s leading corporate fitness program. Lorimer founded the National Championship Ohio Women’s Track Club in 1959 and served as Chairman of the U.S. Olympic Committee for Women’s Athletics during the 1960s. He promoted National Championships in track and field and weightlifting in Columbus – and in 1970 directed the World Weightlifting Championships and Mr. World Contest. Arnold Schwarzenegger won the 1970 event and that developed into a friendship and partnership. When Arnold became Chairman of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports – Jim Lorimer served on that Council with him. Lorimer also served as Mayor and Vice Mayor of Worthington for 52 years.

Twenty-five years ago, I got a call from Jim Lorimer and he wanted to meet with me and he asked if I would head up a new event for the Arnold Sports Festival – the Arnold 5K Pump & Run. He had read an article of an event where runners lifted a portion of their weight based on their sex and age and for each successful lift their run time would be reduced (later I found out the event Jim read about only had 23 participants). Jim and I thought we might get 50 – 100 athletes to try this new event. After a week we had 150 entrants and we closed entries at 200 to guarantee we could handle the participants successfully. Years later we would raise the entrants to a 1,000 limit and would sell out as quick as two days. Tim Pancher oversaw the lifting for the 20 years and we worked with Jim on this event for the Arnold Sport Festival. Jim was a great friend and a champion for athletics.

Hilliard’s Andrew Taylor (15:05) took home the gold in the Arnold 5K.  Columbus Tricia Hengehold (17:45) won the women’s crown.

Complete results are posted on – https://runsignup.com/Race/Results/13973/#resultSetId-440767;perpage:25  

Race photos on - https://www.runohio.com/index.php/photos/2024