Five Star NTP Ambassadors are committed racers who are passionate about the Five Star race experience. Read about their inspiring running stories below!

(P.S. None of them bite, so be sure to introduce yourself if you see them at a race!)

Alex Garcia

I first started running when I was in the Marine Corps and to be honest, I despised it and wasn’t very good at it.


When I got out of the Marines, I gained some serious weight. Time went by and I had a physical scheduled. My doctor told me I was seriously obese and my blood pressure was all out of whack. I decided to make some changes and slowly got into running. I dropped 100 pounds and love running now. I enjoy road races, trail races and obstacle races. When I run now, it’s kind of an escape for me and resets me.

Michael Selman

It Has Not All Been for Nothing

It’s hard to believe that summer is almost over.  Although the days are still hot and humid, the daylight hours are getting noticeably shorter.  The sun comes up a little later each morning, and sets negligibly earlier each evening, the first signs that cooler weather is on the way.  September is the month that it all starts to happen.  And runners live for this time each year, when the relentless heat and humidity of summer lets go of its hold on Atlanta and allows some drier, cooler, refreshing air to replace the stickiness that hovers in the air.

Usually, by this time of year, I have already overcommitted to my fall and winter race calendar.  As this year started, I was especially excited about this year’s Autumn schedule, since I turn 65 in October.  I was really hoping to take the new age group by storm. But as the reality of my 2020 vision became blurred due to the pandemic and races started disappearing, all I can see is a mostly blank race calendar.  There are so many fall races I will miss this year because they have been canceled.  Races are already being canceled into next year, as it becomes more than more clear that COVID is going to be around for a while.

Mitchell Novy

 Having over 20 years of racing experience, Mitch is a veteran on the roads, trails, and track. He has fast PR's, wonderful training advice, but most importantly, he is constantly willing to spread that knowledge of training and racing to the metro Atlanta running community. Jumping on board with Five Star NTP, Mitch feels that he can continue his outreach in helping other runners reach their goals. He loves to inspire runners of all ages. Mitch plans on continuing his pursuit of being competitive in the local road race scene as well as the trails in nearby city parks. 


Check out his running blog below and follow him on social media!

Norman Wenger

I’ve always been a physical guy, working construction in my early years, and keeping a hand in it when I began designing houses. 40 was fast approaching when I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS), which can be severely crippling. Eight years passed with the disease progressing and no clear solutions. Then my daughter asked me to begin walking with her to help with her lacrosse training & fitness. While she was away at camp, I got bored walking alone and started jogging a bit. Before I knew it, I was running 3 miles at a time! Then my daughter talked me into entering a 5k at her middle school. I was stunned when I won 2nd in age group! Soon my college-age daughter encouraged me to enter a race in her college town. 2nd in age group again, and received my award from NFL running back (& Georgia Southern alum) Adrian Peterson!! I’d found something I enjoyed that I was good at and I was hooked.

I have recently celebrated 3.5 years since my first race. I’ve just passed the 200th race, including 5k, 10k, several half-marathons and even 2 marathons. I’ve moved on to a different age group now, but still enjoy bringing home those medals – even a couple grand masters!

While exercise can’t cure MS, keeping my mind & body in top condition helps to reduce the long term effects of a relapse, and thankfully, with recent advances in medical research, I’ll be able to get out there with my running mates for many more years.

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