PORTLAND — When the energetic and enthusiastic Jeremy Adler crossed the finish line Sunday morning, arms raised, it took only minutes for him to become chief spokesman for the Maine Marathon.

“This is the best course I’ve ever run on,” Adler said. “It’s so scenic. The crowd support is fantastic. They’re all cheering. I love the small marathon feel. Nothing beats it.”

Adler spoke clearly and without pausing for a breath, as if he just completed a walk in the park — which it seemed like, given Adler’s four-minute winning margin.

Adler, 29, of New York City, won the Maine Marathon men’s division for a second straight year, in 2:36:35.

Jenny Jorgensen, 27, of Glastonbury, Conn., won the women’s race in 3:00:55.

“Perfect day. Perfect weather,” Jorgensen said, repeating an oft-heard comment on the 44-degree temperature at the start, rising to the low 50’s at the finish.

“You can’t get a better day than this,” said Adler, who bettered his winning time of last year by 2:22.

Last year, Adler had time on his hands. He had just finished taking the bar exam and was waiting to begin his career as an attorney. But being a first-year lawyer in New York did not slow down Adler.

“He’s always gregarious,” said his wife, Bridget. “And he gets up so early to run.”

Adler’s preferred training run is across the west side of Central Park. But his favorite race is farther north.

“I love Maine,” Adler said. “I’ve vacationed up here since I was 12 years old.”

Back then, Adler was a camper at Camp Laurel in Readfield. Later, Adler attended school in New England, at Brown, where he was on the cross-country and track teams.

And now he’s a two-time champion, breaking out on his own after four miles.

“I just tried to enjoy the scenery. Tried to stay calm. Hold on the last 10 miles,” he said. “It worked.”

Marc Gilbertson, 41, of Hyde Park, Vt., was second in 2:40:49, followed by Brennan Galloway of Glastonbury, Conn. (2:41:21) and Adam Goode of Bangor (2:44:30).

Jorgensen, like Adler, was also once a student in New England, recently attending graduate school at the University of Connecticut. But she had never before been to Maine.

“This seemed like a good reason to come up here,” said Jorgenson, who is originally from Minneapolis and attended Colorado College. She now teaches seventh grade math at Illing Middle School in Manchester, Conn.

On Sunday, Jorgensen jumped quickly to the lead, but she was not alone, running alongside the women leaders in the half marathon.

“They were great, fun to run with,” said Jorgensen. But she soon parted from them, “and the second half was tough.”

Behind Jorgensen was Lynn Stanford, 47, of Lancaster, N.H. Stanford could not see Jorgensen, but she knew she was somewhere.

“Everybody kept telling me — you’re No. 2 — which is nice, but not so nice at the same time,” Stanford said.

Stanford called the route from the Back Cove in Portland, north to Yarmouth and back — a “great course. Beautiful.”

But, like others, Stanford found the return from Yarmouth tough.

“Everyone was thinking there would be a nice tailwind at the back and there wasn’t,” said Stanford, who finished in 3:11.35.

Beth Shipley, 29, of Woolwich, finished third in 3:12:01.

In the Masters category for runners 40-and-over who did not finish in the top three of the overall race (ala Gilbertson and Stanford), Candace Herrick, 40, of Chapel Hill, N.C. won in 3:21.09. The Masters men featured a Maine sweep with Tim Carven, 47, of Kittery Point (2:49:53); Byrne Decker, 43, of Yarmouth (2:50:10) and Jack May, 40, of Freeport (2:56:19).

Decker is a previous six-time winner of the Maine Marathon, last winning in 2006.

The wheelchair racing winner was Steven Kruger, 55, of Atlanta (4:15:19).

Chris Oppenlander of Troy, Mich., placed first among the race walkers in 4:40.53.

The marathon featured a total of 992 participants, not counting the relay runners. The half marathon had 2,030 finishers.

In the relay, the Dirigo Running Club quartet of Sheri Piers, Kristin Barry, Josh Zolla and Rob Gomez finished in a course record time of 2:21:22.

Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be contacted at 791-6411 or at:

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