Saturday, April 8, 2017

Linton and Terry wriggle out victories at the Worm Gruntin' 5K

Worm grunting is the art of using vibrations to drive earthworms to the surface of the soil where they can be collected and recruited into a new career as angleworms. This technique is also called worm fiddling, but the villagers of Sopchoppy, Florida decided to use the less savory-sounding term for the name of their annual celebration, the Worm Gruntin' Festival. As with most small town festivals, Sopchoppy's includes a Worm Gruntin' Festival 5K. United States Navy Ensign Stan Linton won the 8 April 2017 edition of the race, running 17:49 that Saturday morning. Alyssa Terry of Tallahassee, Florida was the women's champion, placing seventh overall in 21:18.


For Linton, it was his third Worm Gruntin' 5K title. The former Florida State University distance runner had also won the event in 2012 and 2013. His time in the 2013 race was 15:56, which may very well stand as some sort of record in the annals of annelid-themed racing. Tom Parker was second to Linton in the 2017 race, running 18:41. Travis Parks, the 2014 Worm Gruntin' 5K winner, placed third in 18:56. Parks and Linton had been teammates back when both ran cross-country at Wakulla High. Duane Evans of Crawfordville, Florida ran 19:07, finishing as the top master runner and fourth overall.


Paula O'Neill of Tallahassee was the first woman master and second female finisher, placing eleventh overall in 22:21. Fourteen-year-old Abigail Schwartz was third in the women's standings and twelfth overall in 22:36.


146 athletes finished the 2017 Worm Gruntin' Festival 5K. Miles and Minutes, LLC, of Tallahassee, Florida timed and scored the race.


Top Ten Men, 2017 Worm Gruntin' Festival 5K
  1. 17:48.20, Stan Linton (M, 23)
  2. 18:40.24, Tom Parker (M, 34)
  3. 18:55.85, Travis Parks (M, 21)
  4. 19:06.82, Duane Evans (M, 49)
  5. 20:43.36, Scott Stewart (M, 47)
  6. 20:56.22, Cade Cutchen (M, 20)
  7. 21:38.88, Patrick Ake (M, 33)
  8. 21:39.36, Monte Alxin (M, 43)
  9. 22:19.32, Josiah Chadwell (M, 11)
  10. 22:36.56, Matt Puckett (M, 41)

Top Ten Women, 2017 Worm Gruntin' Festival 5K
  1. 21:17.47, Alyssa Terry (F, 23)
  2. 22:20.16, Paula O'Neill (F, 55)
  3. 22:35.29, Abigail Schwartz (F, 14)
  4. 23:04.72, Jenny Early (F, 33)
  5. 24:26.01, Missy Raffensperger (F, 37)
  6. 26:14.86, Tammy Poucher (F, 42)
  7. 26:24.31, Melissa Champaly (F, 52)
  8. 26:25.43, Dionne Wilson (F, 28)
  9. 27:01.59, Debbie Peters (F, 56)
  10. 27:54.28, Sharon Phelps (F, 41)

Known winners of the Sopchoppy, Florida, Worm Grunting Festival 5K, 2003 - 2017
DateMenWomenFinishers
12 April 2003
10 April 2004
9 April 200518:36, Mackey Tyndall20:57, Julie Clark59
8 April 2006Karl HempelKarmen Duchon55
14 April 200720:11, Brett TempletonSydney Nutting56
14 April 201217:27, Stanley Linton23:00, Julie Rose Travis111
13 April 201315:56, Stanley Linton21:46, Emily Smith139
12 April 201420:48, Travis Parks21:20, Kayla Webbe140
11 April 201517:45, Chase Savary22:05, Hannah Wheatcraft153
9 April 201617:22, Matthew Phillips20:22, Mariah Tinger154
8 April 201717:49, Stanley Linton21:18, Alyssa Terry146


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