"I was in the middle of my long run and I saw them setting up traffic cones in front of my house," said Sununu.
The cones were for the Tulip Trot 5K, a benefit for the National Parkinson Foundation.
"I had already run ten miles," said Sununu. "But the race was for a good cause and my grandmother had died from an advanced case of Parkinson's. Fortunately I had an emergency twenty dollar bill with me."
The FSU freshman ran down to Cascades Park and entered the race with his emergency cash. Almost instantly after the 9:00 AM start of the Tulip Trot, Sununu was in the lead. 3.1 miles later he had won the race by more than 600 meters, running 17:53. James Thompson took second with a 20:24. Chiles High junior Drew Starnes picked up several places during a strong second half, placing third in 20:48. Mark McCarra of Marianna, Florida, was the top master runner in the field, finishing fourth overall in 21:03.
On the women's side, Hope Hoffman set the early pace. About two kilometers into the race, though, Kristi Johnson pulled even with Hoffman. After that it was Johnson's race as she pulled steadily away from Hoffman, eventually building up a 150 meter lead. Johnson finished the 5K in a personal best time of 23:26, winning the women's title and placing twelfth overall. Hoffman was second in the women's standings, coming in 14th overall in 24:08. Vanessa Reinhardt was the third woman finisher, coming in 17th overall in 24:49. Fran McLean edged out Nancy Proctor 24:54 to 24:55 for the top woman master and fourth in the women's division.
For Sununu the Tulip Trot was his first competition since the 50-mile race at the Tallahassee Ultra-Distance Classic last December, a run that had left Sununu's heels rubbed raw and bloody.
"I've got some pretty nice scars from that," said Sununu. "I haven't been able to get the bloodstains out of my shoes."
Scars, stained racing flats, and all, Sununu's next race will be the Run For The Cookies on 14th February 2015. Well, maybe. "I'm 90% certain," he says. After all, you never know when some other event is going to set up traffic cones in front of your house.
The Tulip Trot 5K was first held in Tom Brown Park in 2010 and 2011. After those first two races, there was a hiatus of nearly four years before the event returned in 2015 with a new USATF-certified course in Cascades Park. 202 athletes finished the revived Tulip Trot 5K.
Top Ten Men, 2015 Tulip Trot 5K
- 17:53 ~ Trevor Sununu (M, 19)
- 20:24 ~ James Thompson (M, 21)
- 20:48 ~ Drew Starnes (M, 16)
- 21:03 ~ Mark McCarra (M, 49)
- 21:22 ~ Michael La Bossiere (M, 49)
- 21:47 ~ Ryan Scolnik (M, 27)
- 22:19 ~ Tom Garrison (M, 22)
- 23:03 ~ Justin Wilmot (M, 36)
- 23:13 ~ Nico Wienders (M, 44)
- 23:24 ~ Jason Cumberledge (M, 35)
Top Ten Women, 2015 Tulip Trot 5K
- 23:26 ~ Kristi Johnson (F, 37)
- 24:08 ~ Hope Hoffman (F, 34)
- 24:49 ~ Vanessa Reinhardt (F, 28)
- 24:54 ~ Fran McLean (F, 57)
- 24:55 ~ Nancy Proctor (F, 53)
- 25:44 ~ Rebecca Cahill (F, 32)
- 26:23 ~ Kathy Watkins (F, 59)
- 26:24 ~ Stephanie Kunkel (F, 35)
- 27:09 ~ Stephanie DelCore (F, 21)
- 27:28 ~ Jena Mickel (F, 30)
|Tulip Trot 5K winners; 2010, 2011, and 2015|
|22 May 2010||16:36, Vince Molosky||21:12, Shana Ryberg||318|
|14 May 2011||16:53, Vince Molosky||18:03, Lindsay Zeiler||323|
|31 January 2015||17:53, Trevor Sununu||23:26, Kristi Johnson||202|
|The 2010 and 2011 Tulip Trot 5K races were held in Tom Brown Park.|
The 2015 Tulip Trot 5K was held in Cascades Park on USATF certified course FL14149EBM.
- Complete results of the 2015 Tulip Trot 5K at gulfwinds.org
- More photos of the 2015 Tulip Trot 5K
- 2011 story, "Tulip Trot honors for Molosky and Zeiler"
- 2010 story: "Molosky and Ryberg take the Tulip Trot 5K"
- USATF course certification map FL14149EBM for the 2015 Tulip Trot 5K
- More upcoming races, 5K and longer, in the Tallahassee region