Bowman Cup race gives homecoming a running start

Darian Thomas

The 10th Annual Bowman Cup 5k Race started off Saturday’s Homecoming festivities with the race’s best turnout to date.

This year, approximately 600 people participated in the event, which is nearly 200 more people than last year.

In correspondence with the 10th anniversary of the race, named after former Kent State President George Bowman, 10 new items were added to the event.

One of the biggest items added was the certification and extension of the course by the United States of America Track and Field. Other additions included T-shirts for the first 400 registered participants, free registration for children under 10 and announcing the first, second and third place winners on the video screen at Dix Stadium during the Homecoming game. Everyone who pre-registered for the race got a ticket to the Homecoming football game.

The race began and ended at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center, starting around 8:30 a.m., and the first place finisher crossed the line less than 15 minutes later.

Andrew Carnes was the first male to cross the finish line and Kelly Gephart was the first female to cross.

“The Bowman Cup Race is a staple in the Homecoming tradition,” said Jason Hawk, marketing coordinator at the Rec center. “This is a great event that we try to tie into the Homecoming experience.”

Marc Kutylowski, a senior political science major, said it was his first time running in the race and he had a lot of fun.

“The race was only three miles, but I would say that it got the job done for me. I really liked running on the Portage Hike and Bike Trail,” Kutylowski said. “I wanted to run in it the past two years, but I couldn’t wake up for it.”

Stacey Heitkamp, a senior intervention specialist major, also said she had a good time at the race.

“I ran in it the year before and the shirts this year are a lot nicer. The course really didn’t seem to be longer to me though,” Heitkamp said. “I definitely want to do it again next year and beat my previous time.”

Even though many of the participants loved running on the Portage Hike and Bike Trail, Brittany Hapach, a senior middle childhood education major, said the best part of the race was crossing the finish line.

“This is my first 5k race and I’m glad that I was able to do it,” said Hapach. “Now I can eat anything today and not feel bad about eating it.”

Hawk said he wants to continue the race next year. The Rec center staff plans on sending out e-mail evaluations to find out how the race went this year and ways to improve it for next time.

Contact Darian Thomas at [email protected].