Tuesday, May 2, 2017

No one catches Suzanne Hutchins at the Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon

Chasing Jefferson Davis MarathonA month after General Robert E. Lee surrendered to the United States, rebel leader President Jefferson Davis was fleeing through rural South Georgia. On the morning of 10 May 1865 his flight ended when Davis was captured by the United States Army. 30 years later, Fitzgerald, Georgia was founded 15 miles away from where Davis was caught as a colony for veterans of the Rebellion. Later still, the Jefferson Davis Historic Site was established at the spot where the soldiers snared Davis. 150 years later locals noticed that the site was almost exactly the length of a marathon--26.2 miles--from Abbeville, Georgia, inspiring the first Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon in 2015.

The marathon has become an annual affair, and the third Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon was run from Abbeville to the Historic Site on Saturday morning, 29 April 2017. Suzanne Hutchins of Gastonia, North Carolina was the overall winner of the race, as well as the fastest master runner and the first woman, running 3:10:25. Close behind Hutchins at 3:10:46, Kevin Sweeny was the overall runner-up, the first man, and the first male master.

Evan Cain of Fort Gordon, Georgia was second in the men's standings and third overall in 3:11:07. Fort Mill, South Carolina master runner Jeremy Sisler was the third man and fourth overall in 3:27:57.

Thomaston, Georgia's Aprille Oxenford was the women's runner-up, placing ninth overall in 4:19:23. Master runner Donna Morris of Brooksville, Florida was the third woman and twelfth overall in 4:24:54.

Top Five Women, 2017 Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon
  1. 3:10:24.1, Suzanne Hutchins (F, 42) Gastonia, NC
  2. 4:19:22.3, Aprille Oxenford (F, 34) Thomaston, GA
  3. 4:24:53.7, Donna Morris (F, 49) Brooksville, FL
  4. 4:26:26.4, Lori Lyons (F, 34) Kathleen, GA
  5. 4:26:45.1, Mariette De Meillon (F, 41) Marietta, GA

Top Five Men, 2017 Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon
  1. 3:10:45.5, Kevin Sweeny (M, 47)
  2. 3:11:06.8, Evan Cain (M, 27) Fort Gordon, GA
  3. 3:27:56.9, Jeremy Sisler (M, 41) Fort Mill, SC
  4. 3:29:53.7, William McGill (M, 47) Minerva, OH
  5. 3:56:56.5, Benjamin Power (M, 42) Spring Hill, FL

Since the inception of the Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon in 2015, the event has also included a half marathon race. Edward Ostrander, a seventh-grader on the Lee County Middle School cross-country team, won the 2017 edition of the 13.1-mile race, running 1:53:49. Master runner Brian Trotter of Lake Wylie, South Carolina was runner-up in 1:55:07. Jacksonville, Florida's Igor Tavuzhnyanskiy was third overall in 2:02:35.

Hawkinsville, Georgia master runner Betsy Goslin captured the women's title, finishing fourth overall in 2:02:53. Stephanie Freeman of Rochelle, Georgia was the women's runner-up and fifth overall in 2:06:42. Abbeville, Georgia athlete Rebecca Rhodes took third in the women's standings and sixth overall in 2:14:19.

15 athletes finished the 2017 Chasing Jefferson Davis Half Marathon.

Top Five Men, 2017 Chasing Jefferson Davis Half Marathon
  1. 1:53:48.1, Edward Ostrander (M, 13) Leesburg, GA
  2. 1:55:06.8, Brian Trotter (M, 42) Lake Wylie, SC
  3. 2:02:34.7, Igor Tavuzhnyanskiy (M, 29) Jacksonville, FL
  4. 2:27:05.8, Dean Hettenbach (M, 55) Alpharetta, GA
  5. 2:32:20.3, Greg Waters (M, 52)

Top Five Women, 2017 Chasing Jefferson Davis Half Marathon
  1. 2:02:52.2, Betsy Goslin (F, 40) Hawkinsville, GA
  2. 2:06:41.7, Stephanie Freeman (F, 38) Rochelle, GA
  3. 2:14:18.5, Rebecca Rhodes (F, 29) Abbeville, GA
  4. 2:29:52.1, Kelly Holland (F, 38) Kathleen, GA
  5. 2:46:30.9, Megan Sharrow (F, 35) Douglasville, GA

Chasing Jefferson Davis Marathon winners, 2015 - 2017
9 May 2015Marathon3:14:03, Jack McDermott4:15:59, Christine Stahl27
Half-Marathon1:34:38, Elder Cobler1:48:26, Allison Cauthen15
14 May 2016Marathon3:09:22, Kerry Hobbs3:29:42, Elizabeth Magato39
Half-Marathon1:23:02, Hunter Tucker1:28:10, Kelli Squires19
29 April 2017Marathon3:10:46, Kevin Sweeny3:10:25, Suzanne Hutchins37
Half-Marathon1:53:49, Edward Ostrander2:02:53, Betsy Goslin15