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MONDAY, MARCH 5, 2007
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A long-distance day
12-Hour Run brings out ultra-runners

By Michael Wetzel
mwetzel@decaturdaily.com · 340-2462

Eric Schotz and Jon Elmore sat in the sunny but windy conditions Saturday as 29 runners and relay teams passed the mileage checkpoint. As each runner passed, Schotz and Elmore smiled and offered encouragement.

Schotz and Elmore are both avid runners but their zealous desire to run in 12-hour ultramarathon in their hometown had them sitting Saturday.

The Delano Park 12-Hour Run was their brainchild. But they found themselves parked behind a programmed laptop or busy posting times or rescuing banners from the wind.

“About four or five months ago we kind of hatched this plan,” said Schotz, event co-director. “Yes, we love to run and we plan to take turns running in this thing every other year. But right now it is important the event gets off to a great start.”

DeWayne Satterfield of Huntsville liked the course and logged 66 miles from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. as the top finisher. The 42-year-old logged his first 50 miles in 7 hours, 32 minutes and 59 seconds.

Kathy Youngren, 32, of Huntsville was the fastest female at the 50-mile mark with a 9:35:46 time. The 3M Running Club won the relay event, covering the 50-mile distance in 9:09:37.

Then there was 68-year-old Richard Sitter of Erie, Pa. A veteran of more than 150 ultramarathons, Sitter was returning to Pennsylvania after running in a run in Florida last week and decided to stop for the Delano Park run.

“Decatur’s a beautiful town,” he said during the 52nd of 56 miles.

“This is my first time here, but I’ll be back. It’s been a great event, and the weather has been good.”

Elmore and Schotz admit they weren’t sure what kind of participation they would have in the first year. They said they thought maybe only 10 would show.

“We’ve got runners from nine states here today,” Elmore said. “We’re pleased with the turnout.”

Elmore said most runners shoot for a 50-mile goal. Twenty-year-old John Nevels of Decatur was one of them Saturday.

“Anything I run over 50 will be icing on the cake,” Nevels said before completing his 51-mile total.

The Delano Park run was his sixth ultramarathon.

“It’s nice having one here in Decatur,” Nevels said while running with his mother, Kathy Nevels, and friend Ricky Thompson.

“I hope we have one here every year.”

Schotz said the net proceeds from the inaugural event will go to the Friends of Delano Park for playground and garden projects.

Delano Park miles

Complete results of the total miles logged by the participants in the inaugural Delano Park 12-Hour Run on Saturday in Decatur.

Runner Hometown Miles
1. DeWayne Satterfield Huntsville 66
2. Robert Youngren Huntsville 64
3. 3M Running Club Decatur 63
4. Tim Lee Cullman 62
5. Patrick Binienda Smyrna, Ga. 59
6. Kathy Youngren Huntsville 58
7. Joe Wallace Decatur 57
8. Richard Sitter Erie, Pa. 56
9. Blake Thompson Huntsville 55
10. 5 Girls And A Boy Decatur 55
11. Steve Hogan Killen 55
12. Rosemary Evans Fleminsburg, Ky. 53
13. Caroline Williams Buena Vista, Ga. 53
14. Janet Duncan Huntsville 51
15. John Nevels Decatur 51
16. Frederick Davis III Bedford, Ohio 51
17. James Howton Ward, Ark. 50
18. Rob Apple Murfreesboro, Tenn. 50
19. Michelle Young Atlanta 50
20. Joe Brown Harrogate, Tenn. 48
21. Decatur Daily Girls Decatur 46
22. Bobby Lockhart New Tazewell, Tenn. 44
23. Patrick Flanagan Davie, Fla. 40
24. Michael O’Melia Hampton Cove 31
25. Margaret Westlake Louisville 27
26. Sue Pritchard Mahone, W.Va. 27
27. Larry Pritchard Mahone, W.Va. 27
28. Barry Meadows Decatur 26
29. Jason Trolard Huntsville 19
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