Running family members

Running family members (L-R) Carol Brimmeier, Michelle Hopper and Riley Hopper, three generations, recently competed at the Aguilar 125th Anniversary 12.5K Race and 2-Person Relay.

For one local family, athleticism is a proud tradition that spans three generations.

On August 3, family matriarch and distance runner Carol Brimmeier was joined by her daughter Michelle Hopper and granddaughter Riley Hopper as competitors in the Aguilar 125th Anniversary 12.5K Race and 2-Person Relay.

All three members of the family earned recognition at the race for their impressive finishing times: Brimmeier won the Masters Division medal, Michelle Hopper won second place female, and Riley Hopper (along with team member Ben Wiley) won a gold for the 2-person relay.

The race was the seventh in the 2019 RaBa Cinco running series, comprised of ten local races in which competitors earn points based on their overall finishes. So far, all three members of the Brimmeier/Hopper running family are among the top racers in the series; Michelle Hopper is currently in fifth place for the women with 56 points, closely followed by Brimmeier in sixth place. Young Riley Hopper, a sophomore at Raton High School, is currently in twelfth place for females in the competition.

For both of the Hoppers, Brimmeier serves as a role model of grit and determination. “One lesson I’ve learned and am reminded of each time I race with my mom is the power of perseverance,” says Michelle Hopper. “She continues to push herself toward PR’s (personal records) in terms of both time and distance, and pushes through aches and injuries. There are so many days when I call her after sleeping in myself and sipping coffee, to find that she’s been out running for the last two hours.”

And with such a strong tradition of perseverance, Brimmeier and the Hoppers are sure to be running the distance far into the future.

Aguilar 125th anniversary 12.5K & 2-person relay results


1.Ruth Stodghill, Trinidad, CO – 1:03:44

2.Michelle Hopper, Trinidad, CO – 1:08:08

3.Shannon Youngquist, Trinidad, CO – 1:11:38

4.Tera Bradshaw, Weatherford, TX – 1:14:14

5.Carol Brimmeier, Trinidad, CO – 1:21:06


1.Jeff Walters, Colorado Springs, CO – 1:05:35

2.Robert Kanieski, Granby, CO – 1:10:20


1.Riley/Wiley – 1:11:38

(Riley Hopper, Trinidad, CO / Ben Wiley, Walsenburg, CO)

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