Madison’s Wayne Sherbahn has exhausted his NCAA eligibility but he continues to compete in open meets and qualifiers while chasing his quest to run professionally. He ran at Hanover College (above) this spring and easily won the 100 meter dash. (Courier file photo by Mark Campbell)
Madison’s Wayne Sherbahn has exhausted his NCAA eligibility but he continues to compete in open meets and qualifiers while chasing his quest to run professionally. He ran at Hanover College (above) this spring and easily won the 100 meter dash. (Courier file photo by Mark Campbell)

When sprinter Wayne Sherbahn Jr. graduated from Madison Consolidated High School in 2013 he had stamped his name on two school records, two back-to-back sectional in the 100 meters and earned a trip to the state finals as a senior.

After that his running career really took off.

Sherbahn continued his track career in college at perennial NAIA powerhouse Indiana Tech at Fort Wayne where he just kept getting faster and faster while becoming one of the all-time greats as a 13-time conference champion, eight-time national champion and seven-time All-American as a sprinter.

Sherbahn, who still owns Madison school records in the 100 meters at 11.04 back in 2013 and the 400-meter relay at 43.19 with teammates Logan Konkle, Ryan Fish and Jordan Partee back in 2012, also owns Indiana Tech school records in the 100 with a time of 10.21 and the 400 relay in 39.83 with 2017 teammates Matt Lockridge, Trevor Stanley and DeShon Collier.

But that’s when Sherbahn hit a huge hurdle when he suffered a severe injury — a pulled hamstring that also resulted in a broken arm when he fell — that almost ended his running career. However, he got the support, motivation and encouragement needed to come back and once he was healed up resumed his career and is now pursuing even bigger goals as a runner.

It’s that kind of determination, competitive drive and skill set that made the Sherbahn a perfect candidate to serve as honorary starter of this year’s 40th Annual Madison Courier Firecracker 10K Run/Walk on Saturday July 7 of Madison Regatta Weekend.

Sherbahn, a recent graduate of Indiana Tech with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice, said it was an honor to be called upon to serve as the ceremonial race starter.

“It felt pretty good that I was honored and people were still looking at me to do things and help everyone out in the community,” Sherbahn said.

Growing up in Madison, Sherbahn has followed the Courier 10K and other local running events and been interested in their winners but, as a sprinter, Sherbahn said he has never competed in or watched the 10K but on July 7 that will all change.

“I’ve always read about who won and read articles about it,” Sherbahn said. “I’ve watched long distance running in college but it is going to be interesting and cool watching in my hometown. I’ve never started any kind of race before and there might be some people that I’ll know that will be in the race.”

Switzerland County cross county and wrestling coach Kris Sandlin is the men’s defending champion with a time of 33:31 for the 6.2 mile road course from Madison Consolidated High School on the hilltop to Lytle Park in downtown Madison. The win was Sandlin’s record fourth victory in the event. He also posted wins in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Cindy Harris, of Indianapolis, is the defending women’s champion with a time of 41:39.

Pre-registration for the event is currently available with forms at The Madison Courier, 310 West St. or by visiting www.madisoncourier.com or by URL https://madisoncourier.com/FTP/17Courier10KRaceForm.pdf .

The event is Saturday, July 7 with the run and walk both beginning at 8:15 a.m. Walk costs are $15 if application is received by June 25 or $20 thereafter. Run costs $25 by June 25 or $30 thereafter. Both prices include a T-shirt and a race runner’s/walker’s packet.

Custom awards are presented in all run divisions as well as the top male and female runners.