By Skip Vaugh, USAG RedstoneSeptember 11, 2009
Redstone is sending an experienced running team to defend its title in this year's Army Ten-Miler.
The two-time defending champion in the government agency division, Redstone will compete in the 25th annual race Oct. 4 in Washington, D.C. Most of its runners are back from last year.
"I believe this year's team will do quite well in the field of runners they'll be running against," coach Harry Hobbs, professor of military science at Columbia High and
a retired chief warrant officer 5, said. "I'm proud that our team represents the full Army team - which consists of active Army, DA civilians and contractors. That's why we run in the government agency division. I feel that our premier runner, David Riddle, will lead us to a championship again in the government agency division."
Riddle, an aerospace engineer with the Aviation and Missile Research Development and Engineering Center, returns for his third year. Last year he finished in 50 minutes and 51 seconds, better than his 52:31 in 2007. He was eighth overall, among 18,857 finishers.
"It's been going really well," Riddle, 27, said of his running. "The end of last year was really good. I ran my first marathon at Rocket City. Really this year I've been taking a little time to recover from that marathon. I haven't focused on racing this spring. I still ran about what I have been at Cotton Row the past two years."
He did Huntsville's Cotton Row 10K in 32:03 in May and was the first local finisher.
Asked his goals for the Army Ten-Miler, he said, "That's tough. I really had one of the best races of my life last year. It'll be hard to beat that. I just really want to run well again. You just never know what the competition is going to be like.
"As long as I help the team come home with the team trophy that's all I really care about."
Tim Vinson, 45, an assistant product manager at the Program Executive Office for Aviation, is back for his fourth year. The retired major finished last year's Army Ten-Miler in 1:02:46. His best time was 1:01:53 in 2006.
A Madison resident, Vinson placed 10th overall in the Mountain Mist 50K in 4:42:12 in January at Monte Sano. He did the Mercedes Half-Marathon in just over 1:26 in February in Birmingham.
"I'm once again happy to represent Redstone Arsenal, to be a part of the team," Vinson said. "I have two goals (for the Army Ten-Miler). The first is to just help the team bring home a championship, first place again. And then second I want to get under 1:01."
Hobbs expressed his appreciation for the support from the Garrison and its Directorate of Family and Morale Welfare and Recreation, the Aviation and Missile Command, and the Redstone/Huntsville Chapter of the Association of the U.S. Army.
Redstone is competing in both the government agency and all-comers divisions. Members of Redstone One, in the government agency division, include Hobbs, Capt. Laura Matejik, Col. Bob Pastorelli, Jason Reneau, Greg Reynolds, Riddle, Vinson and Brad Schroeder. Members of Redstone Two, in the all-comers division, include Liz Biondi, Command Sgt. Maj. Rick Cooper, Jason Gilliam, Nathan Graham, Maj. Brian Hackenberg, Randy McFarland, Brett Wilks and assistant coach Skip Vaughn.