SPORTING LIFE: Tuscaloosa Track Club honors members at awards banquet – News – Tuscaloosa News



The Tuscaloosa Track Club recently celebrated the season that was, holding its annual Grand Prix of West Alabama Awards Banquet on January 25.

The biggest winners were Tammy Denson and Roy Meeks who took the top honors for Overall Female and Overall Male. In the final standings for the Grand Prix Overall Female award, Amy Halladay finished second and Christie Ison finished third. Eric Snow finished second and Drew Dickerson third in the Overall Male standings.

The Grand Prix winners are determined by a points system that includes participation in designated Grand Prix races as well as volunteerism. Membership in the Tuscaloosa Track Club is also a requirement.

It was a busy year for the club in 2017 and also one in which membership grew and, already in 2018, continues to grow.

“We ended 2017 with 287 members in the club,” said Denson, the club’s president. “We contracted workers for 34 races, and 19 of those were Grand Prix races where the points for the standings and these awards came from. We help out with so many events, bringing the clocks, tabulating the finishes and all kinds of other things. Generally, every Saturday of the year, there’s a race. This past year we even had a few Friday night events and some on Sundays.”

The races, including some of the Grand Prix events, take place all over West Alabama.

Membership is growing, an increase Denson attributes to people wanting to live healthier lifestyles. Although people can join at any time, the main membership drive for 2018 won’t even be until late November when the club hosts its annual signup event, the Turkey Trot, but already, by the end of January, there were 308 members, nearly two dozen more than at the end of 2017. And the year is just starting.

“I think the main reason we’re seeing more people join is that the community wants to be healthy,” said Denson. “But I also think it’s because we call our group family. A lot of people have made lifelong friends just by joining the club.”

Some of the most popular races have been the Hospice of West Alabama 5K Run/Walk which drew more than 250 finishers last March. Denson said the 5K for Kenya, Doctor’s Day 10K and the Humane Society’s Canine Classic have also traditionally been among the most popular races.

New to the schedule this year will be The Miracle League Run for the Diamond 5K on March 3. That race is not a designated Grand Prix event. The first of those designated races was the Roarin’ Run 5K which was held this past Saturday, Feb. 3.

Membership to the club is $20 for a single individual or $25 for a family. Applications are available on the club’s website,

“One of the benefits of membership is the annual banquet where we honor the Grand Prix winners. It’s free, and we usually have a summer get together,” Denson said. “Joining the club is special because it is a family. We share a common interest. There are group runs. There are groups that get together to do things like train for the half marathon and other things as well. There’s a group of us who are doing a relay on February 11 at the Mercedes Marathon. There are members who get together and train together to compete in marathons all over the country. If you’re a runner, there are so many benefits to joining this club.”


2017 Grand Prix Awards

Overall Female

1st: Tammy Denson

2nd: Amy Halladay

3rd: Christie Ison


Overall Male

1st: Roy Meeks

2nd: Eric Snow

3rd: Drew Dickerson



Jenelle Marsh



Jim Chesnutt


Grand Masters- Female

Robin Largin


Grand Masters-Male

Alvin Niuh


9 & Under

Kathryn Kaylor



Nickalos Traylor



Kayla Cowans



Tyler Smoot


30-34 Female

1st: Sara Kaylor

2nd: Jenni Miesse


30-34 Male

Grant Huddleston


35-39 Female

1st: Kristy Brown

2nd: Terri Huddleston

3rd: Kourtney Taylor


35-39 Male

1st: Jonathan Fuller

2nd: Anthony Estes


40-44 Female

1st: Michelle Wisener

2nd: Cathy Skinner

3rd: Amy Ellis


40-44 Male

Scott Peters


45-49 Female

1st: Amy Philpot

2nd: Tammy Thomas


45-59 Male

1st: Phil Gruwell

2nd: Mike Gray

3rd: Randall Grammer


50-54 Female

Andrea Hirst


50-56 Male

1st: Rick Nickoles

2nd: Glenn Dodd

3rd: John Osment


55-59 Female

1st: Deanna Steele

2nd: Judy Ransom

3rd: Laura Arizumi


55-59 Male

1st: Stephen Secor

2nd: Charles Nichols

3rd: Richard Carroll


60-64 Female

Marilyn Archibald


60-64 Male

Sedell Bullard



Koji Arizumi


70 and Over

1st: Richard Snow

2nd: Phillip Crunk


Volunteers of the Year

Christie Ison

Stephen Secor


Behind the Scenes Award

Steve Nelko


Wagner’s Cross Country Runners of the Year


Becca Billman, American Christian Academy


Tanner King, Northside


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