Keira D'Amato didn't have much to worry about when it came to racing during a pandemic on Saturday as she separated herself from a stout field that included NAZ Elite's Lauren Paquette and Stephanie Bruce.
D'Amato cruised to a first-place finish in 15:07.4 at the Sugar Run 5K in Memphis, claiming the $2,000 prize as well for the elite-only race that saw Paquette cross the line in third at 15:38.7 and Bruce take fourth with a time of 15:40.3.
Paquette earned $1,000 for her third-place result as she raced on a course familiar to her. The runner-up Saturday was Aisha Praught-Leer, who clocked a 15:34.5 and won $1,500 for her effort on the cloudy day.
D'Amato, who ran the first mile in about five minutes flat, led early and extended it as the race unfolded. She climbed the final hill stretch of the race to make sure to hold off Praught-Leer and the NAZ Elite duo.
Due to COVID-19, this year's Sugar Run was limited to a handful of elite racers only for the in-person event, as others competed virtually.
As of now, NAZ Elite has no races scheduled for the rest of November; however, it does have slated The Track Meet for Dec. 5, with Bruce, Paquette, Tyler Day, Danielle Shanahan and Kellyn Taylor set to compete in it.