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Running notebook: Cross over the bridge

     You'll have to cross the international border to compete in a race this week. The one event on the schedule is all the way up in Hamilton, Ont.

     That's right, it's time for another Around the Bay event, the oldest race in North America (started in 1894). It's usually a difficult event, but the cold weather forecast ought to add an extra element of "fun."

     A couple of other notes:

     * Former Western New Yorker A.J. Walsh had a fine run in last week's Los Angeles Marathon. He ran a 2:42:51 to place 39th overall.

     The L.A. event was held in heavy rain. A highlight was that someone held up a sign at the 5-mile mark that read, "The Kenyans are already at 15 miles." Maybe so -- but everyone still gets the same shirt.

     * Last week I wondered if a $25 price tag for preregistration would scare off some runners from the Bengal Run 5K. By one standard, it did. Finishers went from 542 in 2010 to 434 in 2011. There can be other explanations for that drop, of course, but as I mentioned I did hear a lot of complaints about the price in the days leading up to the race.

     I should mention, though, that the headband premium wasn't something Wilt Chamberlain wore during his basketball days, but rather a nice, embroiderered winter item that covers the runners' ears. I've never gotten one of those before at a race.

--- Budd Bailey

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