Andy Van Evera was the first person I coached many years ago when we worked at Lockwood Greene Engineers together. He would always swing by my desk to get some tips on his training and then eventually asked me if I would help him with a plan. He was meticulous in his execution of all his workouts and progressed quickly to Ironman where he went under 11 hours in his first attempt at the distance. Over the years we developed a friendship and I discovered that I had a lot in common with his wife, Becky. We became family friends and always kept in touch even when I wasn’t coaching him. He mentored many other athletes along the way and always led by example. He was a calm, confident and fierce competitor who loved no race more than the Greenville Sprint. He challenged everyone at that race and many times finished in the top 10 Overall despite the fact that he was technically in the clydesdale category. He was always pushing himself to get faster and improve. Andy always had a moment for his friends and would genuinely care how we were doing. He was one of a kind good guy.
A few years ago at the end of January he was out running with a friend when a car slipped on ice and hit him. It was a freak accident ending in the unthinkable. Andy, a friend to everyone who knew him, a strong Rugby player at Clemson, was taken from us far too soon. So in an effort to honor him for the person he was we tried to think of something fitting, maybe an award? That just wouldn’t be enough, somehow renaming the Greenville Sprint to Andy’s Race seemed like the right thing to do. This year ofthe race will officially be called Andy’s race. Thanks to a combined effort of Set up Events (Jeremey Davis & Kelly Page) and Ray Walker Trucking (Melinda Lindberg) we were able to get the official name changed.
I encourage you to race with an AV on your calf this weekend and in the true sprit of the race to race like Andy did, pushing yourself and testing your limits all while encouraging others at the same time.
Our team has been built over the years by people like Andy and this is our way to honor that.
Here is the link if you want to come race with us on August 11th!