Young and old, walkers and runners, and everyone in between gathered together for the 31st annual Race on the Base in Los Alamitos today.
Hip hop music provided by staff from 97.1 AMP Radio filled the air mingling with the excitement at the Joint Forces Training Base. Athletes and spectators alike came together to support their loved ones, the local military, and the USA Water Polo National Aquatic Center. There competition brewed between a few top athletes, but for most, the day served as an opportunity to enjoy a sunny, spring-like Saturday.
The 5K run included participants of a myriad of ages and sizes with walkers and runners coming together to run around the Base. The green-tagged runners started the race in full swing. There were some athletes fully clad with Race on the Base gear as well as mothers pushing strollers to bring their babies in for the ride. In the meantime, the blue-tagged walkers waited for the runners to clear out. In addition to the 5K walk/run, there was a 10K run/skate/wheel, a reverse triathlon, and a kids run.
The morning kicked off with a 7:30 am 10K run/skate/wheel race. The sun wasn’t yet out, but the energy was bright among the athletes with blue, green, and purple bibs for their race numbers. One man stood out among the skaters with his contagious smile and noticeable wrinkles.
Six-year supporter of the Race on the Base and 22-year skater, Colombia native Steve Abenoza can be considered a skating professional. Along with Los Alamitos, Abenoza has skated in San Francisco, New York, Tahiti, Cozumel, and Florida. And his age, 72, is not stopping him from skating any time soon.
“Last month, in honor of my 72nd birthday, I skated 72 miles in Newport Beach,” Abenoza said.
For those, setting a slower pace, Anthony TC Carson, a member of the race crew entertained the walkers while they waited their turn to begin the 5K.
“Walkers, we’re just giving them [runners] a head start!” Carson said as walkers chuckled and nodded in agreement.
Carson has worked on the announcements and DJ crew for the last four years at the Race on the Base.
“I love that this race supports the military. The community comes out together to show their support, and the race always attempts to challenge the participating athletes,” said Carson.