By Randy Pierce
Incorporating the annual Holy Trinity Catholic School “Titan Trot” walk/run event into the parish’s fall picnic proved to be a great idea as comfortable weather and an increase in participants contributed to the success of this year’s competition held on Saturday, September 22.
In 2017, the Titan Trot was held on Saturday morning, October 28, during bitterly and unseasonably cold conditions that, while it did not have a great impact on the number of entrants, made things considerably bit more challenging for all involved, even the organizers.
Formerly held in the spring of the year prior to 2017, the Titan Trot for 2018 was rescheduled so that the runners and walkers in it could enjoy the parish picnic which got underway as the run/walk was ending.
Using a course that took in part of Fountains Parkway in front of the Holy Trinity property and went to the east then back, the Titan Trot included both a 10K and 5K distance with awards presented for the top performers in each, utilizing the timing and start/finish equipment from Toolen’s Running Start of Shiloh.
Meghan Hanna of Highland had the top spot among the females in the 10K with her time of 53 minutes and 15 seconds while Colby Garmin outran the men at 35:51. In the 5K, Richard Dale of St. Louis was first at 18:32 and Angela Reckelhoff-Mueller of Troy came in ahead of the other women in 20 minutes and 20 seconds.
Holy Trinity parishioner Monica Ybarra, at age 44, was third among the women in the 5K at 24:07 followed by 50-year-old Libby Rich just 50 seconds behind.
Monica’s 13-year-old son Dylan was second among the men in the 5K at 18:59 followed by another young parishioner, Holy Trinity Catholic School 2018 graduate Zachary Bilzing with a time of 19:42.
Zach’s younger brother, Caleb Bilzing, was only two places behind overall in the 5K with a time of 20:54.
Only seven women and 12 men finished the grueling 10K distance, with Ryan Dale, brother of Richard who won the 5K, coming in second behind Garmin with a time of 37:29.
It is difficult not to offer praise to the second, third and fourth place finishers in the longer 10K event among the females, primarily because of the endurance they showed in completing the course at their respective ages: Christina Sotoropolis, 44, Lynne Kuldell, 58, and Maggie Juscius, 57.
Among the men in the 10K group, Garmin is 40, Dale 25 and third placer John English is 37. Chris Shriver, 50, and Robert Hoef, 55, toughed it out in the 10K too, coming in sixth and seventh respectively.
The oldest participant by far was a man who has consistently joined in numerous similar events around the area, Bill Beebe, age 71, who impressively came in 31st of the 43 males in the 5K, ahead of 11 others, all but one who are under the age of 37.
Post-race awards were presented by Holy Trinity Catholic School Principal Kristy Frawley and Father Nick Junker.