• WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - An exhausted Sgt. Sam Ngatia attempts to catch his breath shortly after crossing the finish line at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Ngatia finished third overall with a time of one hour, one minute and 38.5 seconds.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - An exhausted Sgt. Sam Ngatia attempts to catch his breath shortly after crossing the finish line at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Ngatia finished third overall with a time of one hour...

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Staff Sgt. Kyle Daun gladly accepts a cup of ice-cold water from Molly Paul at the midway point of the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Minutes later, Paul's husband and race participant, Spc. Shapiro Paul, pulled up for his opportunity at hydration. "C'mon, baby, don't give up!" shouted Molly Paul. "Keep going!"

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Staff Sgt. Kyle Daun gladly accepts a cup of ice-cold water from Molly Paul at the midway point of the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Minutes later, Paul's husband and race participant, Spc...

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Runners congregate on the football field, here, prior to the start of the 2009 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler June 13.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Runners congregate on the football field, here, prior to the start of the 2009 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler June 13.

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - With the sound of the horn, runners begin their trek around Wheeler Army Airfield during the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, held June 13. More than 130 runners, made up of active duty, retired, Reservists and National Guard Soldiers, participated in the annual competition.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - With the sound of the horn, runners begin their trek around Wheeler Army Airfield during the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, held June 13. More than 130 runners, made up of active duty, retired, Reservists and National...

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - The husband and wife team of Capts. Nick and Deborah Ondrasik cross the finish line together at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, June 13, here.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - The husband and wife team of Capts. Nick and Deborah Ondrasik cross the finish line together at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, June 13, here.

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - 1st Lt. Valerie Aquino crosses the finish line at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Aquino was the first woman to finish the race, recording a time of one hour, 11 minutes and 18.3 seconds.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - 1st Lt. Valerie Aquino crosses the finish line at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition, held June 13, here. Aquino was the first woman to finish the race, recording a time of one hour, 11 minutes and 18.3 seconds.

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Runners and their family members make their way toward the starting point of the 2009 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, June 13.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Runners and their family members make their way toward the starting point of the 2009 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, June 13.

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - A smiling Capt. Shawn Dodge gives the thumb's up sign minutes after crossing the finish line, June 13, at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition. Dodge's time of 58 minutes, 10.1 seconds eclipsed the course record he set last year by four seconds.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - A smiling Capt. Shawn Dodge gives the thumb's up sign minutes after crossing the finish line, June 13, at the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler competition. Dodge's time of 58 minutes, 10.1 seconds eclipsed the course record...

  • WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Volunteer Kelcey Burke-Anderson tosses a cup of cool water on a shirtless runner at the midway point of the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, June 13.

    Captain breaks course record during local 10-mile race

    WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Volunteer Kelcey Burke-Anderson tosses a cup of cool water on a shirtless runner at the midway point of the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, June 13.

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Runners beat back the early-morning heat and humidity, here, as they watched their pacesetter blaze his way to a new course record during the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, June 13.

Capt. Shawn Dodge led the competition from start to finish, and did not appear the least bit winded as he smiled his way to a record time of 58 minutes, 10.1 seconds, breaking his 2008 record by four seconds.

Dodge, company commander, 732nd Military Intelligence Battalion, credited the event's other runners with pushing him during the competition.

"It's been an honor to run with them," said Dodge of the other 133 runners, made up of active duty, retired, Reservists and National Guard Soldiers, as well as adult family members and Department of Defense civilians.

The race began at 6:45 a.m. at Bunker Place and required participants to run two loops around the airfield before crossing the finish line at the football field.

Besides the humidity, most runners pointed to the Wheeler gulch area as particularly challenging. Beginning at the route's 1-mile marker, runners were required to descend to the lowest point of the airfield before beginning a 440-foot climb that topped off near Kunia Road - and to traverse that leg-weary stretch twice.

"The hill was horrible," said Capt. Deborah Ondrasik after the race.

"Well, the first time was OK," clarified husband Capt. Nick Ondrasik, who ran shotgun to his wife, "but the second time ... yes, it was unbearable."

Saturday's race also served as the Team Army-Hawaii qualifying event for the annual Army Ten-Miler, held in Washington, DC., Oct. 4. Dodge's win gives him and other qualifiers the opportunity to defend Team Army-Hawaii's 2008 title in the Active Duty Mixed division.

Dodge vowed that new team members would not disappoint their fans.

"I guarantee another win this year," stated Dodge, who will again serve as head coach of the U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii team.

Other top finishers who immediately qualified for Team Army-Hawaii 2009 include Capt. John Mozer (2nd place overall, 59:51.4), Sgt. Sam Ngatia (3rd place overall, 1:01:38.5), and 1st Lt. Valerie Aquino (1st place among women, 17th overall, 1:11:18.3).

Mozer, a nurse at Tripler Army Medical Center, did not participate in last year's Army Ten-Miler competition. Dodge said, "But he'll be a great asset for this team this year."

Race director Jim Perry said six roster spots will be available on the team, but positions will not be finalized until sometime in the summer. He added that qualified active duty Soldiers must also receive their commander's approval before their spots on the team can be guaranteed.

The Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation organized the 10-Mile Race Around Wheeler, with assistance from its Sports Office and Leisure Activities staff.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16