2010 Catch the Leprechaun Winners among South Carolina Elite

Neville Miller, winner of the 2010 Catch the Leprechaun, was named the men's South Carolina Long Distance Runner of the Year.  The top female finisher, Anne Clinton, took home the women's runner-up honors.

USATF SOUTH CAROLINA LONG DISTANCE RUNNERS OF THE YEAR

Article by Bill Marable, USATF State Record Keeper
http://www.usatf.org/assoc/sc/content/longdistancerunneroftheyear.html


Neville Miller and Kristi Arledge have been chosen South Carolina Long Distance Runners of the Year by USA Track and Field for 2010. Also chosen were outstanding masters competitors, George Luke and Susi Smith.

Winning 21 of 25 races, Neville Miller dominated the Lowcountry running scene. Originally from St. Louis, he went to the University of Missouri, where he walked on the track team and earned All-America honors as a middle distance runner. He has personal bests of 1:47.08 for 800 meters and 3:45.24 for 1500 meters along with competing in the 2008 US Olympic Trials in the 800. In 2006, he graduated from college with dual degrees in atmospheric science and communications. In July 2008, he joined WCIV-TV in Charleston as a weekend meteorologist and began running road races. His best wins came at the Rice Run 5K in 15:12 and at Charleston’s Race for the Cure 5K in 15:06. The 28 year old Mt. Pleasant resident ran well in the big races, placing 24th at the Cooper River Bridge Run 10K in 31:29 and being the runner-up at the Turkey Day 5K in 15:05. The year was also important as he got married to a former Missouri track athlete. He was selected for this award over Eric Ashton, Wallace Campbell, Jon Stoehr and Karl Walsh.

With her 40th birthday coming up in 2010 and the goal of a sub 3 hour marathon, Kristi Arledge really dedicated herself to running, and it paid off. The Simpsonville resident won 4 of 8 state races, including 2 of 3 half marathons, winning Greer Earth Day in 1:23:01, iRecycle in 1:26:36 and finishing runner-up at Runfest in 1:24:17. Two of those races came after a car accident in which she suffered arm and knee injuries. The best victory for the mother of two came in the Green Valley Road Race 10 Mile clocking 1:02:36. She finished an impressive second at the Reedy River run 10K in 37:49 and third at the Run Downtown 5K in 18:39. On the marathon front, she accomplished her goal at the end of 2009 and then ran another in 2:58:52 the following year, in winning the Tobacco Road Marathon in Cary, NC. She is employed at a local YMCA as a group fitness trainer. In winning this award, she beat out Anne Wyman Cipolla, Anne Clinton, Sara Powell and Caitlin Ranson.

Setting three state records, George Luke won his age group in all 19 races he competed in. Having turned 70 in March, he had his best performances in five years after having taken up running way back in 1978. The Syracuse, NY native established 70-74 age group records for 5K at the Spring Water Festival in 20:24, 8K at the Sunrise Run in 34:23 and 10K at the Reedy River Run in 43:47. The father of four and grandfather of ten also ran a fast downhill 12K of 51:59 at Ray Tanner’s Home Run. He and his wife moved to Greenville in 2002 from New Jersey, when he retired from his career as a research chemist. The other contenders for this award were Eric Ashton, Chris Giordanelli, Tom Mather and Bob Schlau.

A 30 year running veteran Susi Smith had one of her best years, winning her age group in all 14 races she entered. Upon turning 50 at the end of 2009, she started coming on strong after several years of battling injuries. The Greenvillian had impressive age group wins at the Cooper River Bridge Run 10K in 39:55, the Reedy River Run 10K in 40:47, the Run Downtown 5K in 19:45 and the Runfest Half Marathon in 1:29:04. During the year, she was the top masters in eight events and scored an overall win at the Governor’s Cup 8K in 32:46. A mother of three and grandmother of one, she set a 50-54 age group state record of 1:06:51 for 10 miles at the Green Valley Road Race. She is the Executive Director of Communities in Schools of Greenville County, which is a non-profit that helps young people successfully learn, stay in school and prepare for life. After appearing on the cover of a local fitness magazine, she has gotten into coaching other women runners. She won this award over Kristi Arledge, Dian Ford, Sarah McClean and Lisa Tolley.

A runner must be a resident of the state and a United States citizen to be eligible for this award. Only distance events in South Carolina are considered.

VOTING RESULTS

MALE
Neville Miller 56
Eric Ashton 7
Jon Stoehr 7
Wallace Campbell 6
Karl Walsh 4

FEMALE
Kristi Arledge 36
Anne Clinton 31
Anne Wyman Cipolla 7
Caitlin Ranson 4

MALE MASTERS
George Luke 43
Eric Ashton 18
Tom Mather 10
Chris Giordanelli 6
Bob Schlau 2

FEMALE MASTERS
Susi Smith 35
Dian Ford 20
Kristi Arledge 17
Lisa Tolley 4
Sarah McClean 1