The Chattanooga Track Club

Promoting Running and Fitness in Chattanooga

By John Hunt
Posted: Thursday, May 28, 2015
John Gilpin has done plenty of training in North Chattanooga and is very familiar with the Chattanooga Chase and the series of hills the oldest race in Chattanooga is known for.

Jennifer Stocks has done more than her share of workouts on those roads, so she was fully aware of the challenge she faced when the starting horn sounded.

Both were overall winners in this unique 8K race as Gilpin was the overall winner in 25 minutes, 33 seconds while Stocks wasn’t far behind as the women’s overall winner, taking ninth overall with a time of 29 minutes, seven seconds.

Everyone knows about the hills, but there are times when the weather can be a force as it has been really hot in years past. Sunday’s race was held under near-perfect conditions with virtually no humidity and temperatures in the upper 60s.

Gilpin graduated in December from UTC where he was a standout for coach Bill Gautier’s cross country and track teams. The 23-year-old from Nashville will be here a few more years as he enters physical therapy school in the fall.
He was in a race by himself most of the way as runner-up Geno Phillips finished 35-seconds back in 26:08.

Jack McGinness was third in 26:41 while Alan Outlaw and Matt Jenkins were fourth and fifth, respectively, with times of 26:54 and 27:12.

Stocks averaged 5:52 per mile in winning with her 29:07.

Jennifer Curtis was a ways back as she finished 23rd overall in 33:12 while masters winner Lisa Logan was the third female and 33rd overall in 35:35.

Lisa Becht and Jessica Suddeth were fourth and fifth with times of 36:21 and 36:33, which were 38th and 39th overall, respectively.

But on a beautiful day when Truman Smith led everyone in the singing of the National Anthem before the race began, this one belonged to the younger generation.

“This is fun stuff,” Gilpin said shortly after finishing a tough run.

“I just wanted to see if I could get close to that 25:04 (the course record), but Minnekahdah was as tall as always. I didn’t feel so good when I got to the top, but I was feeling better about halfway down.

“I was just under five minutes at the first mile and figured if I could get somewhere near 25:30 that I’d be okay,” he added.

While Gilpin will be starting PT school in the fall, the 24-year-old Stocks is just a year from completing the same. She has plans to run the Peachtree 10K in Atlanta on July 4th and she’s pointing toward the Marine Corps Marathon in October, so this was just another step in
that process.

“I’ve been doing workouts on this course for the past few weeks and the preparation made it seem easier. I’m really pleased with my effort today,” she said after averaging 5:52 for the distance.

“My goal was to not let anyone pass me on the downhill, but one guy did. I might should have gone out a little harder, but it was a great run and I’m happy,” Stocks, who was the Chickamauga Chase 5K winner in 18:23, concluded.


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