Auburn engineer David Riddle, aerospace engineering ‘04 and ‘07 and Madison, Ala., native, is fast. Really fast. Riddle is a lead engineer at GE Aviation in Cincinnati, but he is also a competitive distance runner, competing in marathons and running ultra-distance races, those longer than a traditional 26.2 mile marathon. His personal best marathon time is 2 hours and 26 minutes, only 7 minutes off of the Olympic trials qualifying time. In 2000, he walked on to Auburn’s Track and Cross-Country teams. He became a four-year varsity letterman after redshirting his freshman year. At the same time, he earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in aerospace engineering – no small feat for a student athlete.
Today, Riddle holds a course record for the JFK 50 mile trail race, which he broke last year after it stood untouched for 17 years. He has qualified for two U.S. National World Championship 100 kilometer teams and competed in the Netherlands and Italy. In April 2012, Riddle placed fifth in the world in the 100 kilometer road event and was the race’s top American finisher. This summer, he completed a 100 mile trail race at the Western States Endurance Run in the Sierra Mountains of California, which features 41,000 feet of elevation change – Riddle finished in 16 hours and 43 minutes for 11th place.
“In between runs, I am still putting my Auburn Engineering education to work,” says Riddle.