“Patrick Rizzo” may very well become a household name to runners and enthusiasts across Illinois and the nation. The 27-year-old Schaumberg High School runner recently finished the Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago ½ Marathon in a blistering 1:06:19 earning him first-place honors and a new course record.
Besides his impressive championship run at the 2010 Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago ½ Marathon, Rizzo has been collecting top three finishes for years. In 2010 alone, he has placed third in the Miami Half Marathon, the Ohme Marathon (Japan) and grabbed a second place finish at the Rock N’ Roll Seattle ½ Marathon for the second time in two years. Many Chicagoans may also remember Rizzo’s 2009 Chicago Half Marathon victory and 2009 Boston Marathon third American overall finish.
The former North Central College track star also raced in the 2008 US Olympic Trials finishing 26th with a personal record time of 2:18:30.
Racing in an event designed around fun and grooving good times, Elizabeth Bilitz got serious and marched her way into first place female honors at the 2010 Terrapin 5K in Chicago with a time of 19:36.
Bilitz’s latest win has propelled her to 17th on the complete women’s standings for the Chicago Area Runners Assocication’s 2010 circuit standings. The standings represent points achieved through placement at CARA-certified events. Victories and top finishes allow runners to slide up the standings.
This year, Bilitz, a 24-year-old Chicagoan and former cross-country athlete at Illinois Institute of Technology, has claimed top age group honors at the Chicago Fire Fighters Run for the Kids 5K and a second place women’s group finish at the ABC 7 Jim Gibbons 5K Traffic Jam.