2006 Trophy Series Athletes Get a Jump on the Competition
MARCH 17, 2006, CARBONDALE, COLORADO-Through the first two weeks of the Trail Runner Trophy Series' six months of racing, this much is certain: it's still a wide open race for the 2006 title. Nevertheless, the first two weekends of racing gave several athletes a chance to garner big points right from the start.
PLEASE NOTE: All point projections are contingent on Race Directors submitting their results in a timely, correct manner.
50-Milers snag Ultra Division Lead
The Old Pueblo 50-Miler, held on March 4 in the arid Santa Rita mountains around Sonoita, Arizona, launched the Series' Ultramarathon Division schedule. Sean Andrish of Leesburg, Virginia, held off a hard-charging Hal Koerner of Seattle, Washington, to snag the win. When Trophy Series points are tabulated later in March, Andrish will sit atop the standings.
In the Old Pueblo 50 women's division, Darcy Africa of Boulder, Colorado, logged an impressive 2006 Series debut by winning the Old Pueblo women's race-finishing third overall, no less. Rugged and fast Vermonter Sue Johnston finished second to Africa, and Californian Kelly Ridgway finished third.
The same weekend, many hardcore Canucks gathered for the Dirty Duo 50K in North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Local boy Paul Purin took the win and will appear near the top of the standings, just a few notches below Andrish and Iowan Bill Barten (see below). Another local, Aaron Pitt (no relation to Brad Pitt who did not run because he was reportedly in Italy for his wedding to Angelina Jolie), finished second, six minutes behind Purin. Vancouver-ite Louise McCorquodale took the women's race. Look for her near the top of the Trophy Series standings as well.
In Maryland, the Seneca Creek Greenway 50K in Damascus, Maryland, gave easterners a chance to garner early-season Trophy Series tallies. 35-year-old Rob Magin of Olney, Maryland, took the overall title, 10 minutes ahead of John Anderson from Vienna, Virginia. Young blood ruled the women's race, as 22-year-old Jean Hyde bested the field, out-running second-place finisher Kavara Vaughn, 26, from Morgantown, West Virginia.
March 11 heralded the annual running of one of the most popular and prestigious 50K races in the country: the Way Too Cool 50K in Cool, California. The 2006 race filled up in only 18 minutes. This year, Seattle, Washington, speedster Phil Kochik blazed through the course, held on portions of the famed Western States 100 trail, in 3:37:55. Colorado stalwarts Bryan Dayton (Boulder) and Paul DeWitt (Monument) finished second and third, respectively. Joelle Vaught of Boise, Idaho, took the women's crown, defeating Meghan Arbogast, who journeyed down from Corvallis, Oregon, by 14 minutes. Another Coloradan, Jamie Donaldson, placed third.
America's Heartland also played host to an early-season Trophy Series event. The Land Between the Lakes 58K in Grand Rivers, Kentucky, gave Midwesterners a chance to keep an early pace with their ultrarunning counterparts elsewhere in the country. 30-year-old Bill Barthen of Ames, Iowa, ran an impressive 4:59:59 (way to break that five-hour barrier, Bill!) for the win, and will snag second place in the first Trophy Series Ultra Division standings. 30-year-old Craig Bunk of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, placed second. In the women's race, Melissa Beaver of Bloomington, Indiana, bested Chatanooga, Tennessee's Kris Whorton for the win.
Marathon & Shorter Division
Most eyes are on Dale Reicheneder of Malibu, California, as he aims for another Trophy Series title. The 40-year-old attorney is on the scoreboard, having already run two races. First, he kicked off the 2006 season by running the Seneca Greenway Trail Marathon (Damascus, Maryland), finishing 17th overall and seventh in a very tough 40-49 age group. On March 11, Reicheneder ran in Kentucky's Land Between the Lakes 14 Miler, where he battled stormy conditions to place second in his age group (in the Marathon & Shorter Division, bonus points are awarded according to age-group finish, not overall placing), 13 minutes behind 42-year-old Hugh Davis of Tell City, Indiana.
Other top point-winners at the Land Between the Lakes Race included: 33-year-old Brian Beckort, who set a new course record; 19-year-old Laura Mitchell, who won the overall women's title; 29-year-old Jeff Edmonds of Nashville, Tennessee, who placed second overall behind Beckort; and 30-year-old Carolyn Garrett of Paducah, Kentucky. All age group winners will claim spots near the top of the Trophy Series standings, with 56 points awarded for their 14-miler age-group wins (pending submission and confirmation from Trail Runner magazine).
Age-group champions from the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail Marathon on March 4 claimed beaucoup Trophy Series points-104.8 points each, to be precise-and can certainly claim a leg up on their front-running competition. These winners included: 41-year-old Courtney Campbell from Berryville, Virginia, who took the race's overall win, too; 40-year-old Monika Bahmann from Comus, Maryland, the women's winner; 35-year-old Suzie Spangler of Annapolis, Maryland; 36-year-old Keith Moore of Washington, DC; and 50-year-old Eugene Gignac of New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, who impressed many with a second-place overall finish.
In Florida, runners in the March 11 First Annual Trout Creek Trail Runs (held in Thonotosassa, near Tampa), celebrated the early days of the 2006 Trophy Series by dashing through pines and oak hammocks. Top 15K age-group finishers, who will each receive approximately 37 points, included: overall winner 35-year-old Ed Parrot from Tampa; Ed's wife, 36-year-old Dana Parrot, who also won the women's overall championship; Eric Laywell, 41, of Gainesville, Florida; Danielle Heath, 41, or Orlando, Florida; 25-year-old Mark Hunter of Tampa; and Lindsey Skinner, 22, of Tampa.
In the Trout Creek 5K Trail Run, age-group winners included: overall winner 25-year-old Ken Corigliano from St. Leo, Florida; women's winner Liz Casteel, 29, of Palmetto, Florida; Brandon Ullery, 31, of Plant City, Florida; John Combs, 58, from Sunnyvale, California; and 43-year-old Sally Chappell of Ocala, Florida.
Top runners from the March 4 Dirty Duo 25K (North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada) will also appear near the top of the initial standings. As of the date of this press release, final results and age classifications were pending.
More to come Š
The Trophy Series heats up during the third weekend of March:
+ In the West, look for Washington and Oregon ultrarunners to rack up points in the Chuckanut 50K on March 18 in Bellingham, Washington.
+ Arizona ultrarunners will have a chance to add to points they may have earned at the Old Pueblo 50, when they run the Crown King Scramble on March 18 in Morristown, Arizona.
+ In the Rockies, runners can get on the board by running the inaugural Antelope Island Buffalo Run 25K or 50K on March 18 just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah.
+ Runners in America's Heartland can hit the Three Days of Syllamo running festival in Mountain View, Arkansas (March 17-19), or the Brew-to-Brew 43-Mile Run on March 19 from Kansas City, Missouri, to Lawrence, Kansas.
About the Trophy Series
Sponsored by LaSportiva and GoLite, the Trail Runner Trophy Series is the world's largest off-road running series. In this its third year, the 2006 Series will encompass over 110 races and more than 20,000 runners from March 1 to September 30. Trophy Series race participants earn points for completing events as well as bonus points for top age-group or overall placing. Runners clash in two divisions: (1) Marathon and Shorter, and (2) Ultramarathon (including any races longer than 26.2 miles-the marathon distance).
For information on the 2006 Series-including a complete race schedule, rules, news and details on points scoring-visit www.trailrunnermag.com.
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