Laurent White didn’t need to worry about a surge from a competitor near the end of the race.
The closest runner in the HiTOPS Princeton Half Marathon was more than two minutes behind the 34-year-old Flemington resident as he kept his even pace to finish the second annual race in 1:18:29, beating the winning time for the 2013 race.
The win in the women’s race was a little more complicated. It appeared as if Meghan Bruce of Princeton was the top female finisher with her time of 1:29:36, but about a dozen runners missed a turn on the course, including the front-runner for the women.
For reasons that are still unclear, a race worker was not directing runners at the turn on Deer Path for a brief time. Julie Macedo of Wilmington, Delaware was ahead of all of the other women by more than a minute before she and other runners missed the turn. The group ran an extra 9/10 of a mile.
When awards were given out, the results were adjusted to reflect the time lost due to the runners going in the wrong direction. Macedo, 20, was declared the top female finisher with her time of 1:31:26. Six minutes were taken off of Macedo’s chip time, which was changed to 1:25:26 for the win.
Bruce, 24, won the Mayor’s Cup, an award that goes to the top male and female finishers representing Princeton area businesses. She is the assistant manager at the Princeton Running Company.
In the men’s division, Daniel Shea, 41, of Princeton came in second place with a time of 1:20:43. Kevin Sun, 15, of Princeton came in third place with a time if 1:28:59. The youngest runners competing in the race this year were 14 years old.
In the women’s division, Grace Doramus, 27, of New York, took third place with a time if 1:31:55.
For complete race results, visit the Mid Atlantic Timing website, where you can also search for runners by name, bib number or team.
Except for the missed turn, the race went off without a hitch, officials said. Princeton Police Chief Nick Sutter said the race was pushed back a half an hour this year. The move helped things run smoother, he said.
More than 1,250 runners from several states participated in the second race hosted by HiTOPS. International runners from as far away as Brazil and New Zealand ran. The majority of runners were from the Tri-State area, with a strong showing from Princeton, Pennington and Hopewell.
Crowds lined the Princeton streets in spite of the cold temperatures. When the race started at 7 a.m. it was only about 40 degrees. Well-wishers bundled up and clutched coffee and hot cocoa as they cheered the runners on. On Herrontown Road, one spectator waved a sign that said it all: “Hurry up, I’m cold!”