Boy, 9, takes wrong turn on 5K race, wins 10K race instead
SARTELL, Minnesota — It took 9-year-old Kade Lovell longer than expected to finish his 5-kilometer race in Minnesota, but only because he was accidentally winning a separate 10-kilometer race.
Lovell’s mother became worried when he did not cross the finish line of the Francis Franny Flyer 5 kilometers in Sartell on Sept. 21. The St. Cloud Times reports she drove along the 5-kilometer (3.11-mile) route looking for him and was “bawling” when no one else saw him, either.
“I had everyone looking for him, even a fireman,” Heather Lovell said. “I was like, ‘You need to go find my son.'”
Then, a spectator called Heather Lovell’s brother-in-law, who was in the 10-kilometer race, to let him know there was a “little kid who was running really well” in the 10-kilometer (6.21-mile) race.
Kade said a woman told him to keep going when he approached the 5-kilometer turn so he did, despite his confusion.
“A lady told me to keep going straight. So I kept going straight,” he said.
Race organizers told Kade’s mother he finished in first place and she thought they meant in his age group. But he was first-place overall. His finished in just over 48 minutes — a minute faster than the 40-year-old second-place contestant.
“He actually probably did better than he normally does because he was trying to finish and in panic mode,” Heather Lovell said.
Even though he’s only 9 years old, Kade is already an experienced runner. He started running with a cross country club when he was 6. JB