Cross, 47, said he was determined to make it his best Bean Run, regardless of where he finished.
“I come out every year and show some community support,” said Cross, who finished the course in 34 minutes, 40 seconds.
He was five minutes faster than his closest competitor, Kikin Yanez, also of Tracy (39:41).
Cross also finished 45 seconds ahead of his 2012 Bean Run time, when he was the winner in the 40-49 age group, and well ahead of last year’s overall winning time (35:16).
In all, 198 runners, ranging in age from 7 to 84, competed in this year’s 10K and 5K races, which started and finished on Eaton Avenue in front of Lincoln Park.
The women’s 10K turned competitive in the last half-mile as Sunduk “Sunny” Kim, 34, of Mountain House (43:08), overtook defending champion Marika Kouda, 38, of Tracy (43:22).
“I’ll bet she’s a marathon runner,” said Kouda, who cut two minutes off her 2012 time. “I could tell, because she kept pacing and getting closer and closer.”
Kim has 12 marathons behind her and three more on her calendar this year. Shorter races, such as the Bean Run, get her ready for big events.
“It was a little bit hard, but I like it,” Kim said. “I hope it gets bigger and bigger each year.”
The winner of the men’s 5K race was defending champion Javier Maciel, 42, of Modesto, a 1990 graduate of Tracy High School. His time on Saturday (16:26) was 1:27 faster than his 2012 result.
“I’ve been getting better every time,” Maciel said. “I had been finishing fifth or sixth every time, but lately I’ve been winning.”
The women’s 5K winner was Trudy Mohr, 49, of Sacramento (20:31). Mohr, a 1982 graduate of Tracy High School, ran the course a second time to cool down after she won the race.
“It felt great. Beautiful day, beautiful weather, beautiful course, beautiful everything,” she said afterward. “I look forward to checking out the rest of the festival.”
Among the runners was a contingent of students from Tracy Learning Center, two of whom placed second and third overall in the women’s 5K and shared the first-place medal in the women’s 18-and-under division. Priyana Patel, 15, and Estefania Torres, 16, finished the race side by side (24:13). Both run for the Millennium High cross-country team, which went to the California Interscholastic Federation state championships in 2012.
“They’re expecting us to go to state again, so we want to do good for the team and the school,” Patel said.
The youngest runner in the 5K race was Allison Brown, 7, of Tracy (44:10), and the oldest was Chris Brodehl, 84, of Lodi (48:57).
Brodehl, who placed third in the men’s 70-and-over age group in the 5K race, said staying active at his age is a matter of determination.
“You have to make up your mind to do it and do it,” he said. “I don’t think I’d be around if it wasn’t for running.”
Mackenzie Willis, 15, a sophomore at Tracy High, and her brother Brady Willis, 13, an eighth-grader at Hawkins School, were among the youngest 10K runners. Mackenzie was first in the women’s 18-and-under age group (59:35), and Brady was second in the men’s 18-and-under group (50:55), behind Mo Harrison, 14, of Tracy (42:34).
Brady said the experience of crossing the finish line after a tough race made the effort worthwhile.
“It feels like everything around you stops and all you hear is the crowd cheering for you,” he said. “Even if you were 53rd overall, you feel like you won.”
• Contact Bob Brownne at 830-4227 or email@example.com.