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Saturday, June 19, 1999 -- Charleston
Mountaineer Spirit 5-Mile Run & 2 Mile Fun Walk
Story and photos by Marty Lamp

[Coverage] Pics: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]

Mountaineer Spirit
The start of the Mountaineer Spirit 5 Mile Run
The streets of Kanawha City were filled with beautiful sunshine and over 160 runners and walkers on Saturday for the Mountaineer Spirit Run. Even the Mountaineer Mascot, Brandon Flower, was there to fire his thunderous musket for the starting gun. What else would you expect since it was the weekend before West Virginia Day, plus the Mountaineer Spirit Run supports scholarships for West Virginia University Students.

With this kind of turnout, you know the racing is gonna be good, and it was. Starting in front of the CAMC building, runners and walkers of all ages took off into the sun promptly at 8am, facing a flat, out and back course that would total 5 miles. Walkers turned around after 1 mile, for a total of two.

Mountaineer Spirit
Dave McCollam winning the Mountaineer Spirit Run
The first person to speed back to the finish line was Dave McCollam(25:55.4). McCollam pushed out to an early lead, and slowly left the front pack, averaging just 5:11 for each mile. Keeping things close was Tony Basta(26:27.8). Basta had McCollam within range most of the race, but could never pull past him. Basta's equally impressive pace of 5:18 per mile was good enough to earn him second place overall. Kevin Williams(26:59.3) finished third overall.

The fastest female on the block this day was Roxann Polo(30:19.6). Polo finished impressively in 13th place overall while maintaining a pace of 6:04 per mile. Never letting Polo rest was Christina Rawson(30:48.7), finishing with the second fastest female time, and a pace of 6:10 per mile. Rounding out the top three female finishers was Kelly McGraw(31:08.6).

Mountaineer Spirit
WCHS Channel 8 News knows where the fun is
In the masters division, things weren't much slower. For the men, it was Glen Baldwin(27:23.3) finishing first for the 40 and over crowd. Baldwin's pace of 5:29 was fast enough to get him a 4th place finish overall. Fred Waybright(28:56.7) and John Frazier(29:19.9) finished second and third in the masters class, respectively. Tammi Jeffrey(34:49.5) finished first for the female masters, while Diana Morris(37:44.3) and Sharon Myers(37:19.8) finished second and third, respectively.

After the race, the little runners even got a chance to race against the Mountaineer Mascot in the always entertaining kids race.

Thanks must go out to Natalie Tennant and Eric Wells of WCHS Channel 8 Morning News for their coverage and support of the Mountaineer Spirit Run, and to race director Sam Sutton, Pat Board, and the numerous volunteers on the course and at the registration tables.