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Trot champ has 2 titles on line
By BOB PUTNAM, Times Staff Writer
Published November 21, 2007
At the finish, Kevin Lyons looked around, never totally comfortable with a lead that grew to nearly 10 seconds.
After all, a former high school rival, among others, was trying to run him down.
Making his initial move after the second mile of last year's 10K Turkey Trot 6.2 miles, Lyons helped to splinter a lead pack halfway through the race.
Near the end, Lyons built a sufficient margin to make history. The former Clearwater Central Catholic standout became the first male runner to win the 5K Wingding (3.1 miles) and 10K Turkey Trot in the same year.
"It was really a dream come true," said Lyons, who graduated from Harvard in the spring. "I've wanted to win these races for so long."
Now comes the hard part. He's trying to become the first in the 29th annual event to defend two titles.
"It will be tough," Lyons said. "I know I'm running the 5K. I'll have to see how much energy I have for the 10K."
On the women's side, former Keswick Christian and USF star Christa Benton is going for her third straight win in the 10K.
Race director Skip Rogers expects more than 12,000 to participate in the Thanksgiving Day races: the 5K (3.1-mile) Wingding that's off at 7:30 a.m., the 1-mile Gobbler at 8:30 or the 10K (6.2-mile) Turkey Trot at 8:45.
All races begin at Keene Road just south of Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard and end at Jack White Stadium at Clearwater High School.
The 29th annual Times Turkey Trot will be Thanksgiving Day at Jack White Stadium at Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave. These races begin on Keene Road south of Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard:
- 5K Wingding, a 3.1-mile course, starting at 7:30 a.m. $12
- 1-mile Gobbler, a fitness run/walk, starting at 8:30 a.m. $8
- 10K Turkey Trot, a 6.2-mile course, starting at 8:45 a.m. $12
- A kickoff party is scheduled for 5 to 7:30 p.m. today at Jack White Stadium. This is the last chance to register in advance (exact amounts in cash or check). There will be snacks, live music and games.
- Onsite registration begins on race day at 6 a.m. Fees are higher on race day ($18 for Wingding and Turkey Trot and $10 for Gobbler).