Former champions win at Corinth

By John L. Pitts/NEMS Daily Journal

CORINTH – With the defending race champions sitting this one out, the 2009 winners stepped up to lead the way Saturday morning at the 30th annual Corinth Coca-Cola Classic 10K.
Julius Kosgei of Searcy, Ark., found himself in a spirited battle down the stretch and won in 31:00, with Micah Tirop of Murfreesboro, Tenn., second in 31:04.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better day,” said Kosgei. “The weather was good and we had a lot of support out there on the course.”
Candace Jacobs of Huntsville wasn’t seriously challenged as she won the women’s division in 36:50. Jessica Myers of Ripley was second in 42:09.
Kosgei, a native of Kenya, won the 2009 race in 30:37 but skipped last year. Jacobs won in 37:19 in 2009 and was second last year in 39:44.
“I feel like I have improved a lot since last year,” said Jacobs, 30, who won the Rocket City Marathon in her hometown back in December. “I wasn’t really pushed today, from about Mile 3 on.”
The race records – 29:25 for men, 34:28 for women – weren’t threatened.
The field of 1,295 runners was up about 400 from last year’s race, which was run under a threat of bad weather, including a tornado warning that presaged last May’s severe flooding.
There were no such problems on Saturday. It was clear and still in the mid-50s when runners began gathering on Fillmore St. for the start and was in the mid-60s by 10 a.m.
After four miles, the leaders, including Kosgei and Tirop, were in a small pack by themselves. They picked up the pace again about the five-mile mark.
“That last mile was great,” said Kosgei, 32, praising the new downhill finish on Foote St. as “wonderful.”
Other notable finishers included former Tupelo High School running and soccer coach Nathan Hall (8th, 37:29) and Gum Tree 10K race director Andy Hughes (19th, 39:30), who quickly turned his attention to talking up this Saturday’s race in Tupelo among his fellow finishers.
Both Hall (34) and Hughes (39) won their age groups.
Douglas Price of Corinth was the wheelchair race winner in 26:58, with Jay Poindexter of Michie, Tenn., second in 31:57. The female winner was 11-year-old Courtney Fortune of Corinth in 1:06:40.
The top Alcorn County finishers, both from Corinth: Bobby Holley (38:05), 10th overall, and Ivy Price (43:15), 46th.
The youngest high finisher was Caleb Cobb, 6, of Baldwyn, 286th overall in 54:28. The oldest, Frank Key of Madison, Ala., was 915th in 1:26:32.
There were 1,140 finishers.

Contact John L. Pitts at 678-1522 or john.pitts@journalinc.com

Race results
Corinth Coca-Cola Classic 10k
(6.2 miles in downtown Corinth)
Overall
Male: 1, Julius Kosgei, 32, Searcy, Ark., 31:00. 2, Micah Tirop, 28, Murfreesboro, Tenn., 31:04. 3, Josh Whitehead, 32, Madison, Ala., 31:51. 4, Douglas Martin, 26, Jackson, Tenn., 32:52. 6, Eric Butze, 40, Memphis, 36:16. Female: 7, Candace Jacobs, 30, Huntsville, Ala., 36:50. 37, Jessica Myers, 37, Ripley, 42:09. 40, Danielle Cobb, 15, Baldwyn, 42:22. 42, Peggy Butze, 32, Memphis, 42:28. 46, Ivy Price, 21, Corinth, 43:15.
Masters (over 40)
Male: 5, Bo Boatner, 42, New Albany, 33:54.
Female: 67, Julie Pittman, 41, Corinth, 45:06.
Grandmasters (over 50)
Male: 11, Robert Whitaker, Owens Crossroads, Ala., 38:19. Female: 81, Jeanine Watts, 50, Lamar, 45:42.
Wheelchair
Male: 1, Douglas Price, 47, Corinth, 26:58. 2, Jay Poindexter, 23, Michie, Tenn., 31:57. Female: 1, Courtney Fortune, 11, Corinth, 1:06:40.

Age group leaders(Complete results at www.coke10k.com)
5-9
Male: 88, Tyler Cobb, 9, Baldwyn. 286, Caleb Cobb, 6, Baldwyn, 54:28. 393, Davis Brawner, 9, Corinth, 58:52. Female: 147, Mercy Cobb, Baldwyn, 48:53. 258, Mycah Sanders, Belden, 53:29. 346, Ava Newhouse, Memphis, 57:07.
10-14
Male: 53, Ken Gassaway, 13, Tupelo, 43:46. 65, Clay Johnson, 12, Saltillo, 45:01. 94, Ethan Kemp, 11, Florence, Ala., 46:27. Female: Kailyn McCarley, 13, Vicksburg, 45:10. 78, Julie Johnson, 13, Saltillo. 106, Martha Chunn, 13, Blue Springs, 47:00.
15-19
Male: 18, Andy McElyea , 19, Walnut, 39:25. 21, Duck Christopher , 19, New Orleans, 39:49. 27, Drew Kerby, 17, Corinth, 40:53. Female: 153, Olivia Johnson, 16, Saltillo, 49:03. 171, Mary Chunn, 19, Blue Springs, 49:53. 283, Mary L. Wayne, 16, Corinth, 54:19.
20-24
Male: 20, Charles Huffman, 23, Tupelo, 39:35. 22, Luke Searcy, 21, Humboldt, Tenn., 39:51. 3, Kevin Storm, 23, Ballwin, Mo., 39:58. Female: 182, Mary Faust, 20, Henderson, Tenn., 50:14. 234, Brianna Steffy, 21, Henderson, Tenn., 52:29. 272, Elise Beisel, 22, Jackson, Tenn., 53:59.
25-29
Male: 23, Bobby Gallagher, 29, Memphis, 39:53. 30, Joel Duff, New Albany, 25, 41:14. 62, Daniel Turner, 27, Belden, 44:43. Female: 143, Lyndsay Shipp , 27, Jackson, 48:38. 170, Emory Kirk, 27, Tupelo, 49:52. 221, Melanie Mills, 29, Corinth, 52:08.
30-34
Male: 8, Nathan Hall, 34, Tupelo, 37:29. 9, Thomas Parker, 31, Jackson, Tenn., 38:00. 13, Eddie Morrow, 31, Booneville, 38:43. Female: 75, Heather Duley, 34, New Albany, 45:28. 93, Jennifer Shipp, 33, Corinth, 46:26. 103, Jessica Ferguson, 33, Starkville, 46:56.
35-39
Male: 19, Andy Hughes, 39, Belden, 39:30. 35, Frank Davis, 36, Corinth, 41:33. 38, Derrick Spradlin, 36, Henderson, Tenn., 42:19. Female: 54, Jane Clair Shettles, 39, Tupelo, 43:50. 89, Bridgett Jolly, 36, Tupelo, 46:16. 188, Lee Forbes-Belue, 36, Memphis.
40-44
Male: 12, Chris Butler, 40, Grant, Ala., 38:30. 15, Tony Palazzo, 41, Tupelo, 39:09. 31, Rob S. Laher, 41, Corinth, 41:22. Female: 114, Esther Sanders , 41, Belden, 47:16. 116, Mary Shirah, 42, Tuscumbia, Ala., 47:27. 155, Anita Monroe, 40, Saltillo, 49:09.
45-49
Male: 10, Bobby Holley, 45, Corinth, 38:05. 17, Stacey Lemay, 48, Florence, Ala., 39:24. 49, Alan Smith, 49, Corinth, 43:37. Female: 168, Debbie Searles, 45, Bolivar, Tenn., 49:48. 197, Kimberly Young, 46, Cordova, Tenn., 50:54. 201, Julie Braziel, 45, Florence, Ala., 51:08.
50-54
Male: 14, Frank Buscher, 52, Memphis, 39:04. 25, David McKinney, 52, Baldwyn, 40:16. 59, Dennis Jackson, 52, Horn Lake, 44:25. Female: 148, Barbara Tatge, 52, Lakeland, Tenn., 48:54. 263, Marsha Cosby, 53, Columbus, 53:43. 303, Dale Davis, 53, Waverly, Tenn., 55:15.
55-59
Male: 48, David Branner, 58, Tupelo, 43:35. 51, David Clark, 56, Tupelo, 43:31. 66, John L. Aikin, 58, Florence, Ala., 45:05. Female: 318, Nancy Hall, 55, Leighton, Ala., 55:46. 338, Ruthie Baker, 57, Bolivar, Tenn., 56:40. 433, Brenda Johnson, 55, 1:00:28, West Point.
60-64
Male: 83, Stephen Truelove, 60, Columbia, Tenn., 45:57. 102, Larry Jackson, 60, Booneville, 46:52. 118, Lawson Thornton, 64, Germantown, Tenn., 47:28. Female: 298, Jan Woods, 62, Savannah, Tenn., 55:10. 413, Cheryl Raymus, 62, Muscle Shoals, Ala., 59:35. 428, Kathleen Thayer, 60, Bartlett, Tenn., 1:00:11.
65-69
Male: 124, Glen Stewart, 66, Collierville, Tenn., 47:38. 126, Roger McMillin, 65, New Albany, 47:48. 133, John Sepko, 66, Collierville, Tenn., 48:04. Female: 520, Sue Burcham, 68, Booneville, 1:03:23. 804, Barbara A. Prather, 66, Corinth, 1:18:34. 876, Margaret Orr, 68, Corinth, 1:23:41.
70-over
Male: 158, Larry Wayne Howell, 70, Saltillo, 49:22. 181, Marshall Jones, 70, Hernando, 50:11. 223, Jerry McBride, 72, Baldwyn, 52:09. Female: 5693, Betty Long, 70, Shannon, 1:11:59. 817, Clark Taylor, 70, Memphis, 1:19:23. 830, Mary Perry, 76, Humboldt, Tenn., 1:20:13.
75-over
Male: 412, Gerald Holbrook, 79, Germantown, Tenn., 59:32. 487, Jim Moulds, 76, Brandon, 1:02:16. 517, Herb Perry, 75, Savannah, Tenn., 1:03:16.