Chilmonczyk, Shi­flett win Bat­tle­field Marathon

Chattanooga Times Free Press - - PAGE 2 BITS - BY RON BUSH STAFF WRITER Con­tact Ron Bush at rbush@ times­freep­ or 423-757-6291.

Paul Hough won the Chicka­mauga Bat­tle­field Marathon in 1987. He was in the mil­i­tary, sta­tioned at the time in Hamp­ton, Vir­ginia.

His son Bran­don came from Day­ton, Ohio, and fin­ished sec­ond Satur­day in the Vet­er­ans Day week­end race at Fort Oglethorpe — and could have won if not for his good sports­man­ship.

The win­ner in­stead was 25-yearold Ma­son Chilmonczyk of At­lanta, run­ning in only his third marathon. He was sec­ond last year in the Bat­tle­field Half Marathon, which in­cludes one loop through the na­tional mil­i­tary park. The marathon in­cor­po­rates the loop twice, and Chilmonczyk headed to­ward it for a third time.

“It was early in the 25th mile. He was 30 or 40 me­ters ahead of me and I saw him make a wrong turn. He was go­ing to take the loop again. He was go­ing to make it an ultra,” said Hough, who yelled to Chilmonczyk to let him know his mis­take.

The ap­pre­cia­tive Ge­or­gia Tech doc­tor­ate stu­dent cut across “ba­si­cally a ditch” through weeds and mud to get back on the right course and later told Hough’s mother what a fine son she has. They ran to­gether most of Satur­day’s race.

“There’s a big­ger pic­ture than just win­ning,” Hough, 28, mod­estly ex­plained.

He fin­ished in 2 hours, 43 min­utes, 18 sec­onds, com­pared to Chilmonczyk’s 2:42:31.

The women’s win­ner, also in her third 26.2-mile race, was

Alice Shi­flett of Rome, Ge­or­gia, also 28. She grew up in East Aurora, New York, but came south to run for Berry Col­lege and now works for the school af­ter a year liv­ing in Colorado.

“Berry brought me here, and Berry kept me here,” said Shi­flett, whose 3:24:33 fin­ish was about five min­utes faster than her time in May in Den­ver that qual­i­fied her for the 2019 Bos­ton Marathon.

“My first marathon was in Pen­sacola, Florida, about four years ago, and my time was like 4:30,” she said.

She planned to run the Bat­tle­field Marathon in 2015 but got hurt and couldn’t.

“So I de­cided to sign up and give it a try again,” she said, not­ing that the course “was hillier than I ex­pected.”

Shi­flett fin­ished 20th over­all. The sec­ond and third fe­males were 24th and 25th: Con­stance Bai­ley of Knoxville (3:28:16) and Julie Russ of Chat­tanooga (3:30:31).

Four-time Bat­tle­field Marathon win­ner Ja­son Alt­man of Knoxville, now 39, was third over­all in 2:48:30, and Ryan McGin­nis of Chat­tanooga (2:56:57), Chance Collins of Sey­mour, Ten­nessee (2:57:30) and Eric Al­brecht of At­lanta (2:59:19) also beat three hours.

Win­ner Chilmonczyk did not run col­le­giately but has been a dis­tance run­ner “off and on, most of my life,” he said.

Still, he usu­ally avoids marathons — his first qual­i­fied him for his sec­ond, which was Bos­ton this past spring — but his half marathon ex­pe­ri­ence at Fort Oglethorpe last year mo­ti­vated him to come back for more.

Harold Smith of Cleve­land and At­lanta res­i­dent Alissa Pal­ladino (20th over­all in 1:36:47) won this year’s half marathon, which like the marathon is des­ig­nated the Ge­or­gia state-cham­pi­onship race for its dis­tance by the Road Run­ners Club of Amer­ica. Smith, a for­mer Bradley Cen­tral and Lee Univer­sity stand­out, com­pleted the 13.1-mile course in 1:11:00, 54 sec­onds ahead of run­ner-up and 2017 win­ner John Gilpin.

Hix­son’s Paul Ar­cham­bault was third and the masters win­ner in 1:19:02.

The half had 804 fin­ish­ers Satur­day, while the full marathon had 335.

An­other 250 fin­ished the Fort Oglethorpe 5k, which was won by Cody Fulkerson in 17:39, eight sec­onds ahead of Gavin Chan­dler. Karin El­liott (20:30) and 13-yearold He­len Webb (20:42) were the first two fe­males, 10th and 12th over­all.

Ma­son Chilmonczyk

Alice Shi­flett

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