Saturday, April 29, 2017

Haynes and Centner gather roses in Thomasville

On Saturday morning, 29 April 2017, for the 40th year in a row athletes converged on Thomasville, Georgia for the annual Rose City Run. This time nearly 400 athletes made the ten-kilometer tour of the Thomasville streets, and this time the fastest runner was Chris Haynes of Tallahassee, who won the race in 32:57. Ann Centner of Blakely, Georgia was the top woman, running 40:56 and placing eighth overall.

Chris Haynes
Chris Haynes

As in the 39 previous Aprils, the athletes gathered on Broad Street for the start of the race. Just as in many of those Aprils, race director Dr. Jim Story informed the competitors, “When the gun fires, you go. If the gun doesn’t fire, you go anyway.” The gun fired. The runners went.


Dustin Reynolds, a senior on the Seminole High cross-country team, bolted to the front of the pack. He was stalked by two Tallahassee runners, Chris Haynes and Leon High senior Matt Cashin. Just two weeks earlier, Haynes had run a 15:43 for 5K, placing second at the Palace Saloon Run. Cashin had races even more recently, going 9:38 in the 3200 two days previously at the FHSAA 3A Region 1 track meet. The two runners weren’t strangers.

Chris Haynes, Matt Cashin
Chris Haynes & Matt Cashin

“He’s our assistant coach at Leon,” said Cashin. “We’ve been training a lot together.”


Haynes and Cashin, coach and athlete, soon overtook Reynolds.


“He was still with us at the mile,” recalled Cashin.

Mickey Moore
Mickey Moore

But not much longer. By the uphill climb near Cherokee Lake during the second mile, Reynolds was already half a minute behind Haynes and Cashin. Soon after that Haynes took over completely.

“Right before the two-mile mark is where we started splitting,” said Cashin.


After that Haynes was alone with the heat, humidity, and hills, ultimately building up a lead of more than half a kilometer--not that he ever looked back to check.


“I thought Matt was closer,” said Haynes. “If he had been with me when I crested Heartbreak he could have gone right by me, because I was toast.”

Ann Centner
Ann Centner

The Rose City Run’s Heartbreak Hill, though, is less than half a mile from the finish line, and no one was close to Haynes. He was home with the win in 32:57.Cashin took second in 34:51. Mickey Moore of Tallahassee was the top master runner in the race, taking third overall in 38:05. Dustin Reynolds was fourth in 38:16 and Perry, Florida master runner Michael Rhodes was fifth in 39:02.


Haynes did his collegiate running at the University of North Florida. Women’s champ Ann Centner, on the other hand, was a University of Georgia distance runner. The former Bulldog was ahead of the rest of the women’s field almost immediately after the start of the Rose City Run.

Ann Centner, Katie Sack
Ann Centner & Katie Sack

“I have trouble with going out too fast,” said Centner. “I have to work on that.”


Poor pacing didn't have any dire competitive consequences for Centner that morning, though, as attested by Tallahassee runner Katie Sack, who spent the entire race chasing Centner.


“I closed in a little between three and four miles,” said Sack. “But that was it.”

Alyssa Terry
Alyssa Terry

Centner ran home in 40:56 for the women’s title. Sack was the women’s runner-up and eleventh overall in 41:44. Alyssa Terry of Tallahassee was third in the women's standings and 26th overall in 44:52. Leon High junior Cynthia Paterson was the fourth woman and 43rd overall in 47:30. The top woman master and fifth female finisher was Tallahassee realtor Nancy Stedman, 46th overall in 48:01.


Neither Chris Haynes nor Ann Centner had raced Rose City before. There were some veterans of past Rose City Runs in the field, but few if any who were at the first race in 1978. But even as the faces in the race have changed, much else about Rose City has stayed the same. The runners have covered the same course for 40 Aprils, the band still plays on the fourth mile, and the Big Oak still provides shade during the awards presentations. And in spite of testimony to the contrary, Heartbreak Hill hasn’t got any steeper in the last 40 years. Thomasville’s Rose City Run has had a good first 40 years, and I hope it’s not asking too much to wish for at least 40 more.


Top Ten Men, 2017 Rose City Run 10K
  1. 32:57, Christopher Haynes (M, 24) Tallahassee, FL
  2. 34:51, Matthew Cashin (M, 17) Tallahassee, FL
  3. 38:05, Mickey Moore (M, 47) Tallahassee, FL
  4. 38:16, Dustin Reynolds (M, 18) Brinson, GA
  5. 39:02, Michael Rhodes (M, 48) Perry, FL
  6. 39:12, Travis Parks (M, 22)
  7. 40:31, Joseph Ashebo (M, 15)
  8. 41:01, Tim Unger (M, 57) Tallahassee, FL
  9. 41:39, Tad David (M, 48)
  10. 41:53, Duane Evans (M, 49)

Top Ten Women, 2017 Rose City Run 10K
  1. 40:56, Ann Centner (F, 25)
  2. 41:44, Katie Sack (F, 25) Tallahassee, FL
  3. 44:52, Alyssa Terry (F, 23)
  4. 47:30, Cynthia Paterson (F, 17) Tallahassee, FL
  5. 48:01, Nancy Stedman (F, 55) Tallahassee, FL
  6. 48:56, Christina Linton (F, 36)
  7. 49:38, Rosalie White (F, 22)
  8. 50:26, Jennifer Douglas (F, 43) Thomasville, GA
  9. 50:55, Courtney Krick (F, 30) Santa Rosa Beach, FL
  10. 51:04, Angie Cipriani (F, 18) Thomasville, GA

40 years of Rose City Run 10K champions, 1978 - 2017
DateMenWomenFinishers
29 April 197831:25, Gary Slayton36:45, Janice Hochstein
28 April 197931:47, Mike Rasper37:49, Janice Hochstein
26 April 198031:18, George West38:14, Colleen Joiner
25 April 198130:21, Mabry McCray40:26, Nicole Batchelder
198230:33, Ernie McKee38:31, Nicole Batchelder
198330:47, Noel Shuman34:57, Darien Andreu
198433:05, Gary Slayton37:51, Barbara Balzer
27 April 198532:36, Rick Miller37:41, Barbara Balzer
26 April 198632:05, Rick Miller37:35, Janice Hochstein
198729:57, Herb Wills37:39, Karen MacHarg
198831:55, Jessie Close37:59, Karen MacHarg
198931:39, Jessie Close36:49, Karen MacHarg
199031:56, Jessie Close37:04, Karen MacHarg
199131:15, Jessie Close38:33, Vikki Saga
199233:04, Trent Smith37:48, Vikki Saga
24 April 199331:28, Gary Droze38:24, Vikki Saga
23 April 199430:19, Robin Rogers37:37, Lisa Herman
29 April 199531:52, Jessie Close35:37, Suzanne Rigg
27 Aprl 199632:18, Jessie Close39:37, Carrie Weyant
26 April 199732:29, Brian Erb36:40, Sarah Docter-Williams
25 April 199831:58, Alan Black36:07, Sarah Docter-Williams
24 April 199932:21, Alan Black37:14, Sarah Docter-Williams
29 April 200034:15, Sean Daniels35:20, Anna Pichrtova
28 April 200132:05, Paul Spangler36:22, Sarah Docter-Williams
27 April 200230:53, Alan Black39:35, Jane Johnson
26 April 200331:58, Matt Kalinski41:53, Julie Carico
25 April 200433:44, Jessie Close39:52, Kate Remillard
23 April 200533:44, Jessie Close37:08, Sarah Docter-Williams
29 April 200634:32, Jessie Close38:38, Barbara Jarnagin
28 April 200731:21, Alan Black39:02, Sheryl Rosen
26 April 200833:10, Malcolm Campbell37:40, Donna Garcia
25 April 200932:34, Nathaniel Haskins41:38, Mary Anne Grayson
24 April 201032:51, Chris Lake37:42, Amy Hines
23 April 201132:46, Chris Lake38:58, Donna Garcia
28 April 201232:51, Chris Lake36:51, Sheryl Rosen
27 April 201332:52, Will Stanford37:08, Sheryl Rosen
26 April 201433:21, Chris Lake38:58, Amy Hines
25 April 201532:04, Nathan Haskins41:32, Beth Sweeny
23 April 201634:37, Roger Schmidt38:11, Ani Veltcheva358
29 April 201732:57, Christopher Haynes40:56, Ann Centner392


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