Cardboard Classic

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Nov. 3, 2002

Cardboard Classic
Clarkston, MI

November 3: A crisp, sunny, windless morning greeted the 10 teams and 86 competitors in this year’s Cardboard Classic at Independence Oaks County Park near Clarkston. The Cardboard Classic is a 8km cross country race that had its start15 years ago as a friendly competition among area running clubs. It is primarily a team competition, and runners who arrive solo are encouraged to group together to form impromtu teams. The race features no shirt, no refreshments, no numbers, no individual time results, and a course that has been described as "not flat, not fast, not TAC certified." It also features no entry fee and a beautiful, yet difficult, run through the woods.

A unique aspect of this year’s Cardboard Classic was the handicapped starting system. Runners were placed in starting groups based on their age and gender and each group was assigned a time handicap based on the American record 10k time for that age and gender group. 70+ females started first and other age groups followed at specific times based on their handicaps, with the open male division leaving last, 17:34 after the first group departed. This start time handicapping system places all runners on an equal basis by the time they get to the finish line, and allows teams consisting of runners of different ages and genders an equal opportunity to win the team championship.

The pre-race favorites for the individual title this year were Laura Murphy, a two-time Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier, and Donnie Richmond, defending champ and 11th place finisher in the Division 1 state cross country championships the previous day. Murphy’s handicap put her nearly 2 minutes ahead of Richmond at the start, but behind a large number of masters runners and youth runners who began the race with even larger handicaps. By the halfway point of the race, however, Murphy had passed all those that had started ahead of her to take the lead. At that point Richmond and teammate Tim Rowland were running together about 30 seconds behind. Rowland began to drop off as Richmond pushed the pace to catch Murphy just after the 4-mile mark and go on to the win. Murphy held on for 2nd, with Rowland 3rd, and a fast charging Brett Sanborn 4th.

1. Team Whoosh — 41 (1, 3, 8, 11, 18, 29)
Donnie Richmond, Tim Rowland, Greg Thomas, Rob Shinouskis, Adam Richmond, Tracy Priska,

2. Singles — 61 (2, 4, 5, 14, 36, 72)
Laura Murphy, Brett Sanborn, John Brabbs, Jim Laurie, Christian Hauser, Tom Cameron

3. Team Powerhouse — 66 (6, 7, 10, 17, 26)
Don Balkwell, Terry Castor, Jim Deren, Gary Greib, Jeff Kulzera

4. DC Raiders — 122 (15, 16, 21, 30, 40, 42, 47, 62, 63, 66, 73, 74)
Mike Demko, Karen Donoughe, Mike Donoughe, Mark Evans, Darrel Lamar, Ted Lindstrom, Randy May, Wendy Pete, Gary Reed, Ervil Smith, April Tasco

5. Team Speedy — 124 (13, 22, 27, 28, 34, 38, 39, 46, 51, 52, 54, 61, 68, 75, 78, 83)

6. General Motors — 162 (12, 20, 35, 45, 50, 55, 58, 60)
Gary Duke, Gordon Gibson, Jim Gillette, Allison Noe, Joe Baldwin, Jeremy Loveday, Brenda Loveday, Tom Siberski

7. Cross Country Crazy — 190 (9, 41, 43, 48, 49, 64, 67)
Steve Bartman, Chuck Byron, Kane Johnson, Rod Johnson, Drew Langton, Jim Mohler, Tim O’Donnell

8. 4 Dweebs & a Furball — 206 (19, 31, 32, 53, 71)
Mark Dedow, Claire Dedow, Greg Dedow, Lauren Dedow, Pat Furlo

9. Team Elephant — 325 (44, 59, 65, 77, 80)
Darrell Hancock, Matt Middleton, Mark Rogers, Mike Warren, Jody Winkelman

10. Zoom-Zoom-Zoom — 348 (23, 70, 84, 85, 86)
Carole Carpenter, Tom DeVos, Elizabeth Dyhouse, Robert Dyhouse, Krystal McKinsey