There is no doubt that everyone remembers where they were when the news of 9/11 transpired. That day has been woven into American history as one of the most tragic, bleakest moments in our time. The memories and legacy of those lost will live on through us.
The Sara Low Memorial 5k was started in 2007 to celebrate the life of Batesville native, Sara Elisabeth Low. She was a flight attendant on the first plane to crash into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Proceeds from the race benefit the Sara Low Scholarship Fund, which is given to a Batesville High School senior.
For the second time in 5 weeks, the Arkansas Grand Prix Series found its way to historic Batesville. Last time it was the White River 4-Mile Classic. This race made its debut in the series in 2008. During that year, all but one of the course records set stood for the remaining years. However, four years later two of them would be broken.
After heavy rains blew through the state, temperatures dropped. The runners and walkers welcomed a very inviting 65 °F. The pre-race ceremony included David Meroney, Arkansas RRCA State Representative, singing the national anthem. Cody Beckett followed the ceremony by getting everyone warmed up, Zumba style.
Ken McSpadden had double duty serving in the capacity of timing the race and as race director. He started the countdown for the race to begin.
The weather ignited the runners. They went out fast! I headed down the hill to intercept them and take pictures. The leader came flying through with a considerable lead. After a few runners passed, I went to the track to see the runners finish. I noticed the Batesville High School Band was ready to add energy to the atmosphere. Wish I could persuade them to travel around with me using them as my personal theme music.
Imari Dellimore finished in 17:36 to break the course record he set in 2008. He was a minute and a half ahead of the next finisher, James Bresette. Kristen Treadway was the first woman to finish in 19:53.
Mary Jo Brinkman broke the female seniors record that was set in 2008 by Rosemary Rogers. Hank McLaughlin didn’t break a course record, but he was ecstatic about finally winning first in his age group (55-59) in the Grand Prix in his eighth attempt.
Everyone involved made the race a success. The White River Roadrunners have successfully put on two good races in a short amount of time. That, in and of itself, speaks volumes about the club.
Next Grand Prix Race
For the third consecutive week, there is a Grand Prix races taking place. The Arkansas 20k, hosted by the Saline County Striders, is Saturday, September 15 in Benton. Starting and finishing at the Benton High School, it’s an out-and-back course with rolling hills. There is an early start at 7AM, if needed.
Grand Prixers get a break in the schedule until October 13 when the series journeys northwest to Fayetteville for the only cross country race in the series, Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival. The final stretch of races features no distance less than 10k. Start strong and finish stronger!
Complete Results by Mac’s Race Timing