Maryland Takes Center Stage

The weather was perfect this weekend for an exciting and eventful array of sports around the state. From horse racing to cycling to extreme races, there was something for everyone to participate in. Here is a snapshot of why Maryland is a growing Sports destination:

Maryland will have another, as the 137th Preakness featured the largest crowd ever. Over 120,000 people donned their snazziest outfits, partied, jammed and celebrated horse racing at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore City. The horse racing did not disappoint either. I Will Have Another narrowly defeated Bodemeister to put itself in position to become the first Triple Crown winner since 1978. Stay tuned to see if I Will Have Another attempts to make history at the Belmont Stakes on June 9th.    

The 2012 Men’s and Women’s NCAA Lacrosse Championship 2nd Round matches were decided this weekend as the Road to Foxborough (for the Men) and Road to Stony Brook (for the Women) continued. The Men’s matches took place at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, which pitted #1 Loyola-MD vs. un-seeded Denver and un-seeded University of Maryland vs. traditional powerhouse #5 John Hopkins. Loyola narrowly defeated Denver, 10-9, to advance to the Final Four against Notre Dame. UMD continued its masterful run with an 11 to 5 victory over Hopkins. Maryland will play rival #3 Duke University in their Final Four match at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA this weekend.  In the Women’s bracket, #3 UMD defeated #6 Loyola-MD, 17-11, to advance play #2 Northwestern in the Final Four this Friday at Stony Brook. Be sure to watch the Maryland lacrosse teams on their quest for a National Championship.

Over 1,700 people descended upon Centennial Park in Howard County for TriColumbia’s signature event, The Columbia Triathlon. The 1.5K swim, 41K bike and 10K triathlon annually attract professional and amateurs from across the country and across the world. The Columbia Triathlon is recognized as one of the most challenging and longest running triathlons in the USA.  In the professional division, 2011 defending champions, Lindsey Jerdonek and Andrew Yoder both returned to reclaim their thrones. However, both fell short of that goal. Cameron Dye took the crown for the Men while Andrew Yoder and Ben Collins finished in second and third, respectively. For the Women, Annabel Luxford finished in first place followed closely by Leanda Cave and Laurel Wassner finishing in second and third, respectively. Click here for more results and information about TriColumbia.

Bike Jam 2012 played host to the Mid-Atlantic Bike Racing Association Age Graded Criterium Championships at Patterson Park in Baltimore City. Over 350 International caliber and local racers of all ages and levels competed for cash and prizes all day. The day long festival celebrated all things cycling and also featured events for families. There were two recreational bike rides of 12 & 31 miles, a cycling stunt show, interactive village, Bike & Health Expo, food and live music. Awards were given for the male and female winner of each age group and for the winner of each Pro division. In the Pro Division, the Men’s race came down to a photo finish with the top-three places separated by 3 tenths of a second. In the end Shane Kline from PA took first place with Daniel Holloway from CA and Michael Chauner from PA in second and third, respectively. The Women also featured close races with a tie for first and second in Category 3. Renne Roth from MD and Antonina Esposto from PA both crossed the line at 40:28.4. Go here for more information on Bike Jam 2012.

Slightly over 1,200 competed in the First Annual St. Michaels Running Festival through historic St. Michaels and the waterfront communities. A portion of the proceeds benefited many of local organizations in Talbot County with the YMCA and the St. Michaels Community center being the primary beneficiaries. Participants from across the U.S., including New York and Virginia, competed in one of three races: Half Marathon, 5K Run/Walk or 10K. Awards were given out to the top three male and female competitors in each age group which ranged from 1-19 to 70+. In the 5k, the male and female winners, both aged 36, won decisively over their younger counterparts and proved the old cliché, “Age aint nothin’ but a number.” For more results from the St. Michaels Running Festival, click here.

Mud, fire and 10 other obstacles were no match for the 18,000+ ambitious men and women that competed in the Warrior Dash; the world’s largest running series, at Budd’s Creek Motocross and Speedway. The first wave of Warriors departed at 8:00am with subsequent waves leaving every half hour until 4:30pm. After conquering the 3.02 mile dash, Warriors refueled with a free beer, turkey legs and sweet corn on the cob while jamming out to live bands. Click here for results from the Warrior Dash.

It was an eventful and exciting weekend of sports in Maryland. To stay up to date on all the events that are happening in the state, head to our events page.

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