Running Shorts Notebook: Race Series banquet is tonight; Abbey Cooper to visit Triad; weekend runs support hunger causes

News and notes about running in the Triad.

Running Shorts Notebook: Race Series banquet is tonight; Abbey Cooper to visit Triad; weekend runs support hunger causes
Junction 311 Endurance Sports' Craft Half Marathon and 5K in Winston-Salem in April 2021.

A new recipient of the Will Caviness Award will be introduced Wednesday night at Junction 311 Endurance Sports' banquet for the Omega Sports Race Series.

The banquet also will honor the overall and age-group winners for the 2021 race series.

The Caviness Award was created in 2011, and it recognizes runners who help or inspire others in the community. Caviness died in October 2011 after collapsing near the end of the Chicago Marathon, which he ran while raising money for the International Association of Fire Fighters' burn foundation.

Hollis Oberlies, who started and coaches the running program at Kiser Middle School in Greensboro, is the last individual to have been recognized in 2019. With COVID wiping out most racing in 2020, Junction 311 and Omega Sports recognized the Triad's running community because of its perseverance through the pandemic.

ICYMI, David Fleming for produced an extraordinary story two years after Caviness' death. Click here to read.

Previous recipients of the Will Caviness Award:

2011: Kristi Hunter, Tommy Boles

2012: Gregg Westbrook, Chris Hicks, Chris Lindstrom, Ty Jenks, Kevin Rice

2013: Naomi Ballen

2014: Jeff Keezer

2015: Eddie Wooten

2016: Frank Smith

2017: Carl Cook

2018: Danny McCormick

2019: Hollis Oberlies

Abbey Cooper is guest for Twin City Track Club Winter Seminar

Olympic runner Abbey D'Agostino Cooper, part of one of the great sportsmanship stories in sports history, will be the guest for the Twin City Track Club's Winter Seminar Feb. 19 at the Bermuda Run Country Club.

Cooper, a Boone resident with husband, Jacob, just missed making the U.S. Olympic team for the Tokyo Games with a fourth-place finish in the 5,000 meters at the U.S. trials in June 2021.

Click on the video to see highlights of the women's 5,000 final at the U.S. Olympic trials in June 2021.

Cooper's race in the final, just days after securing an Olympic qualifying time in a crowd-thrilling preliminary, came five years after her memorable fall with Nikki Hamblin during a 5,000 meters heat at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Click on the video to see the story of Abbey D'Agostino Cooper and Nikki Hamblin at the 2016 Olympics.

Cooper, later diagnosed with a torn anterior cruciate ligament and torn meniscus in her right knee, immediately helped Hamblin back to her feet. Later in the race, Hamblin came to the aid of the struggling Cooper. Hobbling to the line, Cooper finished the race and shared an embrace with Hamblin. Cooper not only needed surgery for those injuries but she returned to the U.S. trials after also having managed foot, Achilles and hamstring issues.

A social is scheduled for 6-7 p.m., followed by dinner. Cooper, a seven-time national champion at Dartmouth, is scheduled to speak about 7:45 p.m. The cost for the evening is $35. Click here to learn more and to sign up.

Earlier on Feb. 19, a social fun run is scheduled for 9 a.m. The run is open to everyone and will start at Dough-Joe's Doughnuts & Coffee, 114 Reynolda Village, Suite C, Winston-Salem.

The track club's lineup of speakers, going back to 1988, is impressive. Bill Rodgers, Frank Shorter, Uta Pippig, Zola Budd, Jeff Galloway, Dick Beardsley, Hal Higdon, Bart Yasso and Dave McGillivray are among an all-star list of guests.

Running for H.O.P.E. in Winston-Salem

Justin Bailey is going the extra mile to help H.O.P.E.

The Winston-Salem resident, who ran 43 miles on his 43rd birthday to assist the non-profit that helps feed families with children, will go 44 miles on Saturday to celebrate his 44th birthday.

Bailey, friends and anyone who would like to join them will run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Kimberley Park, 355 NW Crawford Place, Winston-Salem. Bailey plans to donate to H.O.P.E., or Help Our People Eat, for every mile run. His efforts in 2021, supported by about 75 friends and community members, raised more than $6,000 for the organization.

Click here to sign up and learn more.

"The event will be similar to last year," Bailey writes via email, "except that we have more community backing in the Year 2. Crazy Running will be setting up a tent with activities for kids, we'll have at least one food truck, a DJ will be playing music, and we have partners like Fleet Feet of Winston-Salem who donated prizes for giveaways."

Northwest Guilford students hosting run for food donations

Kara Dell, a sophomore and a runner at Northwest Guilford High School, is organizing a run to help collect canned food for the Interactive Resource Center in Greensboro. She founded a club that provides support for IRC.

The untimed event, featuring hot cocoa at the end, will be at 2 p.m. Jan. 29 at the school at 5240 Northwest School Road.

The entry fee is a donation from the attached list. But grab a bag full of items to take, and click here to sign up.

Junior high prepared me

Some serious tones have been sounded on important topics throughout this post.

So I'll leave you on a lighter note.

The story that went around Farmville Junior High School after the coach directed basketball tryouts in the mid-1970s went about like this.

"What's your name?"
"Eddie Wooten."
"You're cut."

It's not a true story. But it could've been.

I relived that one Saturday after Greensboro's Buffalo Creek Run Club captured the Gwyn's Grace 50K Relay at the Frosty Fifty in Winston-Salem. A group of runners stood in a circle in the parking lot, talking about running, and I stopped by to listen in.

Up walked Tyler Robakiewicz, one of the four runners on the championship team with Keith Gruchacz, Harrison Brown and Michael Koballa. Tyler greeted each person in the circle, offering a fist bump and a word of encouragement before turning to the next runner.

"Good job!"
"Good job!"
"Good job!"

Then, turning to me, without breaking his cadence:

"Thanks for showing up!"

Big laughs all around, especially from me.

Now that's a true story!

Running Shorts resources

Race Days: Road and trail races in the Triad
A listing of road and trail races, plus virtual options, across the Triad (with a few beyond).
Running groups in the Triad: Greensboro, Winston-Salem, High Point and more
A directory of running groups across the Triad that are free to join and would welcome you.
Tracks in the Triad: Here’s where you can run and walk
A guide to tracks in Guilford and Forsyth counties that are considered open for runners and walkers.