History of the Cajun Cup
1980 – Cajun Cup was started by Glenn Gremilion, Tommy Marty and Coach Charles Lancon. The start/finish for the race was the Northgate Mall. I believe that the race was started to boost the sales from the running store that the three guys owned together called Athletic Attic, located (you guessed it) at the Northgate Mall. The first couple of years, the race was televised live by Channel 10 KLFY (helicopter provided by Acadian Ambulance). The race was run at that same location for the first three-four years and became a stop on the Gulf Coast Grand Prix running circuit. The first Race was won by Tom Nolan, also the track and cross country coach for Comeaux High School for many years.
In 1982 Floyd Sonnier’s art was first used. The logo is still in use today with the art to be use every 5 years.
1984 – The CRRC (Bill Johnson-President; Jim Venable Vice-President) took over the race director’s job (co-race directors) and moved the start/finish to the Evangeline Downs parking. This was the first year of CRRC total involvement and resulted in the largest to date official entry of 1500 runners.
1985 – Bill Johnson began serving as race director. The officers of the CRRC decided to move the race to the Lafayette Southside with the start/finish at the new Cajundome facility. Note-Hollis Conway 1984 Olympics Silver Medalist and USL graduate serve as the official starter for the 1985 race.
1988 – In conjunction with Coach Charles Lancon and USL, the CRRC/Cajun Cup endowment was started with a $10,000 donation. The proceeds from the race each year since then have gone to the endowment.
1990 – Bell South Mobility was introduced as the title sponsor for the race. The race became known as the Bell South Mobility Cajun Cup.
1991-2005 – The event continued to be held at the Cajundome/Cajun Field with race administration provided by a select group of CRRC members, USL Coaches and track team members. Not sure when it changed from Bell South Mobility to Cingular Wireless.
2005 – The event was moved to a downtown start/finish to allow the event to be held the same weekend every year without conflicting with UL athletic home football games.
2006 – The Course was recertified by USATF.
2007 – Cajun Cup is being held in conjunction with the Marquis de Lafayette Celebration. Our title sponsor Cingular wireless changes name to AT&T. A limited edition Floyd Sonnier Poster is brought back and available to all.
2008 – Cajun Cup was the RRCA 10K State Championship Race. Our Winners and State Champions were Kevin Castille and Kate Accardo.
2009 – Once Again Cajun Cup was Selected as the RRCA 10K State Championship. This year AT&T stepped down as title sponsor with Service Master of Lafayette becoming our new title sponsor. Candice Alexander designed the artwork for the shirts which incorporated the Fluer des Lis and runners on a white Long Sleeve Shirt. Chip Timing was introduced for results with all times starting from gun time. Our Winners and State Champions were Kevin Castille and Kate Accardo
2010 – Is the 30th Anniversary of the Event, once again we will be featuring Floyd Sonnier for the artwork this year. (Shirt Color White/Red) This year Cajun Cup switched from Cotton Shirts to Dry Fit.
Note – Special recognition to the late Floyd Sonnier who designed (at no charge) all of the art work (posters, shirts, and awards) for the event. Special Thanks to VerlieSonnier and Beau Cajun Galleries for their continued support of Cajun Cup. These designs are still being used today!
2011 – Cajun Cup will host the RRCA Regional 10K Championship. Another new design by Candice Alexander will be the artwork of choice. Geaux Run steps up as title sponsor.
2012 – The Event was Sponsored again by Geaux Run, Cajun Cup was the 2012 Southern Region 10K Championship. Artwork designed by Melissa Dronet.
2013 – Record participation which has not been seen in years, with over 1700 participants. For 2013 we were selected as the RRCA Louisiana 10K State Championship. This years title sponsor was once again Geaux Run and the artist was Andrew Perrin. $23,000 was donated to the ULL track and Cross Country Team, $1,000 to the CRRC High School Scholarship program and $1,000 to the RRCA “Kids Run the Nation”.
Records – Kent McDonald set the race record of 29:08 in 1981 and Middie Hamrin set the female record of 33:56 in 1985. The Male Masters record is 31:40 set by Dr. Pat Hambrick in 1992. Margo Braud established the Woman’s Masters mark at 38:05 in 2003.
Special thanks to Robert “Bob” Sonnier and Jerry Richard for all the pictures of the shirts. That is quite a collection of Cajun Cup shirts.
In 2016 Andrew Perrin was inspired by the works of Floyd Sonnier and created the artwork displayed on that year’s shirt. It depicts local runners racing down Jefferson Street towards the finish of the Cajun Cup Course.
In 2017 Andrew Perrin illustrated Madame Broussard “Cajun Running Shoe Maker” working diligently on a runner’s shoe while the grandchildren play in the yard and a runner prepares for his run.
2018 was the year Andrew artwork with quite a different feel from the previous years. This came about after a sketch he made for the terribly stormy Al Comeaux LA10 race January of the same year. With this style he depicts local runner Michael Marineaux. When asked what how he would describe Cajun Cup Michael answered quite appropriately, “Run for fun, race for Jambalaya”