Terlingua Track Club is a Houston based running club, founded in 1967, 50 years ago.

Members train on their own but have social meetings and one club race per year. It used to be the hour run; you ran on the track for one hour. It was shortened to the LP Run about ten years ago.

The annual LP Run hosted by Terlingua Track Club is the oldest race in Houston. One of the more unusual races around, this race is all about speed and stamina. Run as many laps as you can in 33:20. The run is now held on the track at Rice University so perfect feet and leg conditions. Runners are assigned a lane which they must stay in. Runners also must count their laps, so best to bring a friend!

Lately, the LP Run has been part of the Houston Area Road Runners Association race series. Previously held on Wednesday night, it will be held on Saturday night for the first time in 2017.

Terlingua Track Club: A Short History

In the late 1960s a small group of distance runners a few of whom had competed at the collegiate level and others who ran just for fun organized a running club in Houston. The orginal mix of those who were high level competitors with those who were less so set a pattern for the future – anyone who wanted to join the club was welcome.

In view of the fact that some club members trained in the desert and mountains of the Big Bend National Park area, the Club took its name, Terlingua Track Club, eponymously from the gateway to Big Bend – Terlingua, Texas.

Terlingua’s focus from its inception has been to foster its members’ love for competitive running while maintaining a sense of humor in the process.  If success can be measured by how well and how long a club follows its basic mission then Terlingua has achieved it and continues to achieve it.

Year after year Terlingua’s runners have demonstrated competitive spirit in the individual and team honors received in local AAU, Athletics Congress and HARRA competitions and in many state and national competitions.

The marathon has always held a special place in the hearts of Terlinguans.  Just as the towns of Marathon, Texas and Terlingua, Texas share a common heritage in their location, so too do Terlinguans have a long association with the marathon. A Terlingua member was the founder and initial director of the Houston Marathon in 1972, and ever since, Terlinguans have volunteered to put the race on and competed in it. Terlingua claims among its members several directors of the Houston Marathon, past champions, and one member who has completed more Houston Marathons than any other runner.

In addition to the Marathon, Terlinguans compete in races of all other distances, especially in the fall and spring HARRA Championship races. Terlingua Track Club hosts one of the spring HARRA Championship races, the LP Run. Formerly the One Hour Run, the LP Run is the oldest race in Houston and co-holder of the title “Oldest Race in Texas”.  The timed run has been held every year since at least 1968, usually in March or in April. Each competitor runs as far as possible in 33⅓ minutes on a stadium track.  The Race has always been accompanied by a side competition: one year a haiku contest, another year, a chili cook-off, several years of a cookie chill-off and toss, and more recently, with Limerick competitions.

Terlingua social events have taken place at members’ houses, but more often Terlinguans have gathered at Star Pizza after championship relay races and after other HARRA races and in association with the LP Run.

Many Terlinguans have been, and still are, coaches of runners in the greater Houston area and directors of local races.

Terlingua’s members usually remain with the Club for many years. There is a strong sense of friendship and fellowship as a result of all of the time spent together in training, competing and volunteering at local races especially at the LP Run.

If you are interested in wearing the green and gold colors of Terlingua please contact Dale Lee at dale.lee822@gmail.com or at 409.457.1983, or Alex Galbraith at alextgalbraith@gmail.com or at 713.899.1083.

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