Runners traveled from as far as Colorado to compete in the Big Turtle 50 Miler Saturday, April 27.

The Big Turtle is a set of 50-mile, 10-mile and 50K races hosted by Next Opportunity Events that run from Laughlin Health Building on Morehead State’s campus to the north end of the Sheltowee Trace and back.

“The race would not happen without the support of several local organizations,” said Brandy Whisman from Next Opportunity Events. “Morehead Tourism has supported the race from day one, providing valuable input on logistics and volunteers.”

Runners in the 50K and 10-mile divisions turn back before reaching the end of the trail, but all runners do complete the race in one day.

“The Big Turtle 50 Miler is a huge success economically for our community. We see people coming to Morehead weeks in advance to participate in the practice runs,” said Morehead Tourism Director Joy Brown.

Residents of Kentucky won first place in five out of six of the races offered, with the exception of the men’s 50K won by Brandon Slokowski from Cincinnati.

Other first place winners included Ariela Flory from Eastview, Justin Angler from Lexington, Corey Long from Louisville, Elizabeth Middleton from Olive Hill and Mark Rebholz from Newport.

In second and third place for each division were Laura Zalewski, Kathie Noe, Scott Buser, Ryan Ramsby, Amy Robbins, Shelby Moore, Sidney Noble, Nelson Weaver, Carrie Stuart, Elizabeth Hoskins, Michael Short and Griffin Vanmeter.

Along the trail, aid stations were set up by the Corbie Ellington American Legion Post 126 and private land owners and manned by the Sheltowee Trace Association.

For more information on the Big Turtle 50 Miler, contact Next Opportunity Events at info@nextopportunityevents.com.

Daneyl Tackett can be reached at dtackett@themoreheadnews.com or by telephone at 784-4116.