Each fall season the Alumni office hosts a Pilot 5k run/walk race open to faculty, staff and the community. This year’s event was held on Sept. 25, 2010. Men and women of all ages and athletic abilities showed up at the starting line on the crisp Saturday morning in front of Goodman Gymnasium to participate in some healthy competition. Around 100 of the competitors ran the race while the remaining 25 decided to walk the beautiful campus course. “All in all, I think we did well,” said Lois Pannebecker, director of the Alumni office. The number of participants was average. However, the kids’ walk did not happen this year due to a complication with the online registrations, explaining the slight drop in participants. There was also another race in the community happening the same weekend, a Notre Dame home football game, and an earlier race date for the Pilot 5k. Pannebecker and Linda D’Amico, they said they wished they had gotten more mass advertising out earlier to have drawn in more runners. Despite lower numbers and some setbacks, the race continues to be a “really upbeat and positive experience for runners who really enjoy the beautiful campus,” said D’Amico. The tradition of the Pilot 5k walk/run began in the year 2005. “ I wanted to involve students and alumni," said Pannebecker. "It was worth giving a try.” Since the event first launched, the race continues to improve. The course remains the same, but technology use has increased. Last year electric timing through runners chips was introduced. This provides a more effective way to time the runners, and as they cross the finish line they are able to see their time displayed on a large digital clock. “We are always trying to improve the quality of the race,” said D’Amico. The overall top runner for women this year was junior Jodi Spotts, with a finishing time of 20 .48. Ryan Greutman of South Bend finished first for the men with a time of 15.58. The oldest participant of the race was 66-year-old Vaughn Smith, running a race of 21.14. The youngest runner was 12-year-old Kelsey Florian, running the course in 24.9. Professor Christian Davis, a regular runner, finished first in his age group with the time of 19.13. All race benefits help students. The previous year’s benefits helped send medical students to a conference. The first four years of the race’s existence benefits went to the Habitat for Humanity chapter on campus. “This year’s race/walk will benefit international students emergency fund,” said Pannebecker.