The inaugural Quillen 100 bicycle race held at Bristol Motor Speedway earlier this month raised more than $6,000 for the Tri-Cities American Heart Association and drew cyclists to the area from as far away as Alabama, Kentucky and Ohio.
The cycling relay and community health event was organized by students at East Tennessee State University’s Quillen College of Medicine and was sponsored by Ballad Health, ETSU Health, Bristol Motor Speedway and several other community partners and donors. The event included a 50-mile competitive relay (Quillen 100) and a 20-mile noncompetitive relay (Little Q). The family-friendly event also featured a festival, health fair and youth bicycle ride around the racetrack.
“This event was all-inclusive and gave people from all walks of life a chance to race at Bristol Motor Speedway,” said Ryan Serbin, a Quillen student who helped organize the event. “We had national champions competing in the Quillen 100 and people who hadn’t been on a bike in years in The Little Q. It was inspiring to see people join in and get back to a healthy lifestyle.”
Sixteen teams participated in the Quillen 100 relay. The top three finishers were: Pedal for Alzheimer’s (first place), Ferg & Bros (second place), and Milligan Cycling (third place).
Ten teams participated in the Little Q, with the top three finishers including ETSU Cycling (first place), Brentwood Bikers (second place) Belmont Bikers (third place).
More than 50 medical and undergraduate student volunteers from ETSU helped make the event possible.
“From pit volunteers to crafts with the kids, everyone was engaged, smiling and giving their heart to a great cause,” Serbin said.
Organizers say they will make the Quillen 100 an annual event, and they are already working on plans for next year.
“The people at Bristol Motor Speedway are some of the finest people that I have ever met,” said Jordan Newby, another Quillen student organizer. “They believed in this event from the day that it was pitched to them, and they made sure that it was a success.”
Visit www.etsu.edu/com to learn more about Quillen College of Medicine.