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Runners, walkers visit Marshall for Oaklawn Hospitality Classic

MARSHALL – Mitchell Klingler, 24, of Coldwater, set the overall best time in the 10k and 5k races during the annual Oaklawn Hospital Hospitality Classic on Saturday.

With a time of 32 minutes and 23 seconds, Klingler scored the top speed during the 10k race, administered by Classic Race Management.

Abigail Longhurst, 25, of Battle Creek set the best time by a female in Saturday’s 10k race, with 39 minutes and 32 seconds. Longhurst is a Marshall native.

Klingler also achieved the overall best time in the day’s 5k race. That time was 15 minutes and 38 seconds.

The best time in the 5k set by a female was 19 minutes and 57 seconds, set by Jenny Robinson, 34, of Fort Wayne, Ind. Robinson said it was her first visit to Marshall, and her first time participating in the Hospitality Classic.

About a thousand runners and walkers typically take part in the annual event, and organizers called Saturday’s turnout gratifying.

“We had a wonderful day and there was only a very slight drizzle for just a short time,” said Theresa Shippell, the event’s coordinator. “Everyone had fun and it was a great time.

“We’re so grateful for all of the community’s ongoing support, and for all of the help from the volunteers,” Shippell said. “They really pitched in to make this one of the most enjoyable annual events that we can share in Marshall.” Eaton Corp. was the event’s top corporate sponsor.

Full results of the various events may be found at www.classicrace.com.

The 10K course record for males was set in 1986 by Louis Hoekstra, with a time of 31:17. The female record holder in the open category, also set in 1986, is Ann Forshee, with a time of 37:31.

In 2014, Anthony Winnie of Jackson set the overall best time in the 10k race, with a time of 36 minutes and 53 seconds. Also last year, Erica Harrell of Potterville set the best time by a female in the 10k race, with exactly 42 minutes.

Also in 2014, Matt Melvin of Bangor achieved the overall best time in the 5k race. That time was 16 minutes and 5 seconds. The best time in the 2014 5k for a female was 19 minutes and 13 seconds, set by Amanda Weaver of Marshall.

The course records for the 5K for males is 14:56, set by Duane Daughtery in 1997 and females 17:19, set by Jenny Goodpaster in 2000. During the 5K in 2012, the overall winners were Michael Klinger of Coldwater, whose time was 15:59, and Amanda Weaver of Marshall, whose time was 18:28.

Participants Saturday ranged in age from 1 year old up to age 88. Most were from communities throughout Michigan, but other runners and walkers came from Indiana, Arizona, Texas and Florida.

George Youngdahl of Marshall sang the National Anthem at the onset of the day’s activities. In addition to the hospital’s sponsorship, the event’s top corporate sponsor was Eaton Corp.

The event coincided with National Hospital Week, sponsored by the American Hospital Association.