Utica’s Hermin Garic finishes eighth in Boston Marathon
Utica’s Hermin Garic competed in the Boston Marathon earlier this week and finished eighth overall in the wheelchair division. Garic finished with an official time of one hour, 35 minutes and 38 seconds.
It was Garic’s fourth time competing in the Boston Marathon, but the first time he’s been invited as an elite athlete.
“(Being an elite athlete) means you get there on Thursday — or whenever you want before the marathon — you get hotel included, travel paid, entrance (paid),” Garic said. “Basically everything is covered.
Prior to the Boston Marathon, Garic participated in the Cooper River Bridge Run in South Carolina, where he broke the course record – which he set in September – with a time of 22 minutes and 34 seconds and finished at the first place.
The Cooper River Bridge Run and the Boston Marathon are just a continuation of what has been very successful over the past 12 months for Garic. During that time, he had two top-10 finishes in the Boston Marathon, two wins in the Cooper River Bridge Run, a win in the Falmouth Road Race, and his first-ever Boilermaker Road Race win.
Boilermaker 2021:Hermin Garic of Utica earns his first victory
“Everything I do in terms of training and working with my coach is paying off,” Garic said. “I’ve obviously noticed my pushes and things improving since last year, and even at the start of 2020 things started to improve and my times were getting faster and faster. So that’s amazing because, like I said, you put in the time and you hope for results and they show up.”
The wheelchair class winner at the Boston Marathon was Daniel Romanchuk with a time of one hour, 26 minutes and 58 seconds.
Romanchuk is a household name in the Utica area, having won the Boilermaker Road Race four times.
“Hats off to Daniel,” Garic said of Romanchuk’s success in the wheelchair division. “I still have a lot of work to do to catch up with Daniel, but it’s good to see him at some of my sites in some of these races for longer as he’s usually the leader of the pack.”
Jason Robinson, a graduate of Westmoreland High School, also ran in the Boston Marathon. The 19-year-old finished 16th with a time of one hour, 44 minutes and three seconds.
After:Jason Robinson continues to make his mark as a wheelchair track athlete
On the racing side, Garic is preparing for the Lilac Bloomsday Run which will take place in Spokane, Washington on May 1.
“We haven’t done this race since COVID happened,” Garic said. “So I’m really looking forward to it, it’s a really fun race.”
There are plenty of events ahead, but Garic is also set to defend his crown as the Wheelchair Division winner at the Boilermaker this summer.
“I haven’t missed one yet – knock on wood – since 2005,” Garic said of the Boilermaker. “It’s my hometown race, I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
Off the road, Garic is preparing for the 18th Annual Sitrin Celebrity Wheelchair Basketball Game taking place at the University of Utica at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 28.
Sitrin STARS: Sitrin hosts the annual Celebrity Classic wheelchair basketball game
This year’s game will feature Syracuse University basketball stars Jimmy and Buddy Boeheim as part of the celebrity team that will face off against Garic and the rest of the Sitrin STARS.
“I’m going to try to relax as much as possible,” said Garic, who will set off for the Lilac Bloomsday Run the day after the basketball game. “I hope the celebrities don’t yell at me too much. I’ll kind of talk to them aside and say, ‘Hey, look, everyone’s fair game, but I have to fly the next day to Washington. .'”
Garic says the night is a lot of fun for everyone involved.
“It’s literally just a fun night of basketball and laughs,” Garic said. “Having some of these athletes as a buddy (Boeheim) there and you playing just to notice, ‘wow he’s used to playing, obviously standing up and the hoop being so much closer to his head than ours and able to pulling buckets like no tomorrow’, but once you sit down it humiliates them.”
Tickets for the Sitrin Celebrity Wheelchair Basketball Game can be purchased at sitrin.com/celebrityclassic.
Kenny Lacy is a sports reporter for the Observer-Dispatch. Email Kenny Lacy at [email protected]