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Run takes new course

Record 131 participants dash for Kenai River

Posted: Sunday, June 10, 2007

 

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  Josh Holly kicks to the finish line to take first overall in the 5-kilometer race. Photo by Jeff Helminiak

Connie Best and Jenni Mishler race through Swiftwater Campground on Saturday at the Run for the River. The friends wanted to cross the finish line of the 10-mile race at the same time, but Mishler was officially credited with the victory, while Best was second.

Photos by Jeff Helminiak

The running community on the central peninsula is small enough so pretty much everybody knows everybody. That’s why when Adam Reimer stayed on the tail of Kenai’s Mark Blanning and passed him for the victory at the Run for the River in Soldotna on Saturday, Blanning figured Reimer was from Anchorage.

 

Josh Holly kicks to the finish line to take first overall in the 5-kilometer race.

Photo by Jeff Helminiak

Turns out Reimer is from Soldotna, he just doesn’t race very much. Reimer took the 10-mile race with a time of 1 hour, 2 minutes and 28 seconds, while Blanning finished 31 seconds behind. In the women’s 10-mile race, friends Jenni Mishler and Connie Best ran together and said they tried to cross the finish line at the same time. It didn’t quite work, with Mishler winning at 1:13:47.1 and Best finishing .04 behind.

 

Adam Reimer and Mark Blanning duel along the 10-mile course Saturday. Reimer pulled ahead to win with a time of 1:02:28.6, 30 seconds ahead of Blanning.

Photo by Jeff Helminiak

In the 5-kilometer event, Josh Holly, who will be a sophomore at Cook Inlet Academy, stormed to the victory in 18:21. Holly’s closest pursuer was Donn Raymond, who was a little more than two minutes behind. In the girls race, Molly Watkins, who will be a junior at Kenai Central, won in 20:09. Synneva Hagen-Lillevik was the runner-up, more than two-and-a-half minutes behind.

 

Josh Holly kicks to the finish line to take first overall in the 5-kilometer race.

Photo by Jeff Helminiak

Reimer said he does only a few races a year. The last race he did before the Run for the River was the 50-mile freestyle in the Tour of Anchorage in March, in which he finished a very respectable 15th. Reimer said he has been running three times a week this summer to get ready for the Crow Pass Crossing, a 24-mile wilderness race which will be held in July.

He had planned to do a training run on Friday night, but a friend told him about the Run for the River and he decided to do that instead. He got more than he bargained for when he latched onto the heels of Blanning and followed him on the 10-mile layout up and down East Redoubt Avenue and through Swiftwater Campground.

“It was a fast run,” Reimer said. “I would not have run that fast if he hadn’t been there.”

Reimer saw his chance as the two were leaving Swiftwater Campground.

“I was thinking he was faster than me, but I might be stronger,” Reimer said. “It was uphill and into the wind, so I figured it’d be a good time to make my move.”

Reimer was right.

“I knew if he made a move, he’d be gone,” Blanning said. “I had given about all that I could at that point.”

The Run for the River is part of the Kenai River Festival. With the festival moving to Soldotna, the run also had to make big changes. It was the first time for the Redoubt course, and also the first time the 10-mile event was offered. The run had a record 131 participants

“I wish it had more hills and corners,” Reimer said of the course. “Going down that straight stretch was like a giant drag race. It was a nice course, though.”

Reimer and Blanning had a brief encounter with a moose and its calf, and runners also passed a big Rottweiler on a chain.

“I’m glad it had a chain on it,” Blanning said. “That thing wouldn’t have had much problem catching me.”

One of the benefits of the new course is that, unlike the previous course in Kenai, runners get to see the river while in Swiftwater Campground. Or, at least, most runners got to see the river.

“We passed the river?” Mishler said. “I never look. I just run.”

Mishler and Best are part of a group of local women that will travel to Utah in October for a marathon. Saturday’s race was a good opportunity for a training run. The two actually ran about a minute faster than they had planned to run. Best said part of the reason was the race’s finish, which was a busy block on the Sterling Highway.

“I like finishing on the road,” Best said. “I was really tired, but there were so many people driving by and watching, it just made me want to finish. I couldn’t stop.”

Watkins enjoyed getting away from the traffic and back into the woods and campground, although she said a race through a campground was a unique experience.

“It was kind of strange racing through a campground with people looking out of their tents and staring at you,” she said.

Holly, who is preparing for the prep cross country season by running nearly every day this summer, liked the course for one reason.

“It was a fast course,” he said. “It really let you open up.”

Run for the River, Saturday in Soldotna

MEN

Five miles

0 to 6 — 1. Bechler Metcalf, 43 minutes, 27 seconds; 2. Hudson Metcalf, 47:21; 3. Jacob Jackson, 48:37; 4. Brian Pfister, 55:06.

7 to 14 — 1. Jordan Theisen, 23:50; 2. Jonah Theisen, 23:53; 3. Spencer Jones, 44:18; 4. Rylie Fields, 49:58; 5. Bradley Kishbaugh, 55:38.

15 to 20 — 1. Josh Holly, 18:21.

21 to 35 — 1. Jason Daniels, 21:51; 2. Ryan Peterson, 23:32; 3. Waylon Marler, 25:50; 4. Jamie Nelson, 30:36; 5. Eric Pederson, 37:37.

36 to 54 — 1. Donn Raymond, 20:26; 2. John Mohorcich, 20:47; 3. Wayne Wilson, 21:50; 4. Michael Stangel, 22:27; 5. Kent Peterson, 24:49; 6. Craig Aufenkamp, 31:45; 7. Jason Elson, 31:50; 8. Anthony Oliver, 32:31; 9. Greg Russell, 36:50; 10. Daryl Bowers, 47:18.

55 and over — 1. Jim Brothers, 22:29; 2. John Roderick, 23:16; 3. Glenn Tinker, 28:21; 4. Tom Iversen, 30:44; 5. Ray Vining, 47:53; 6. Skip Isham, 52:43; 7. DJ Kishbaugh, 56:08.

10 miles

0 to 30—1. Jordan Jenkes, 1:16:40; 2. Andrew Breitbeil, 1:30:20; 3. Ethan Chabora, 1:30:55.

31 and over — 1. Adam Reimer, 1:02:28; 2. Mark Blanning, 1:02:59; 3. Jim Danielson, 1:08:47; 4. Kent Peterson, 1:08:48; 5. Andrew Stoltz, 1:16:57; 6. Joel Burns, 1:17:59; 7. Kurt Strausbaugh, 1:22:59; 8. Bruce Linton, 1:26:22; 9. M. Scott Moon, 1:30:11.

WOMEN

Five miles

0 to 6 — 1. Alexia Pfister, 55:05; 2. Lily Pfister, 55:06; 3. Kaitlyn Massey, 59:26.

7 to 14 — 1. Annalise Theisen, 26:00; 2. Margaretta Moesch, 31:36; 3. Jessica Jackson, 48:39; 4. Taylor Kishbaugh, 56:06.

15 to 20 — 1. Molly Watkins, 20:09; 2. Synneva Hagen-Lillevik, 22:47; 3. Sarah Walton, 23:15; 4. Heather Penhale, 32:30; 5. Grace Olendorff, 32:38; 6. Kacia Dimick, 32:38.

21 to 35 — 1. Shannon Lofton, 25:01; 2. Stacy Meyer, 25:03; 3. Sarah Priffee, 26:05; 4. Regina Daniels, 28:18; 5. Jeanessa Marler, 28:33; 6. Brittany McCrum, 30:20; 7. Tasha Reynolds, 30:35; 8. Angie Nelson, 30:36; 9. Larissa Phillips, 31:42; 10. Nettie Keller, 35:03; 11. Sherry Pederson, 37:37; 12. Darcy Swanson, 41:13; 13. Lana Metcalf, 43:29; 14. Katie Bowers, 47:45; 15. Jennifer Jackson, 48:40; 16. Kim Fields, 49:59; 17. Kelly King, 53:41; 18. Morgan Aldridge, 53:42; 19. Erica Pfister, 55:07; 20. Jessica Sundberg, 55:38; 21. Angela Massey, 59:27; 22. Jennifer Woods, 1:01:15; 23. Amy Hogue, 1:02:56; 24. Kaycle Schmilzenback, 1:33:29.

36 to 54 — 1. Jenny Olendorff, 25:29; 2. Tracey Marrs, 26:20; 3. Karla Barkman, 27:04; 4. Regina Theisen, 27:17; 5. Lanie Hughes, 27:40; 6. Laura Mohorcich, 27:49; 7. Tammy Strausbaugh, 29:17; 8. Joellen Fowler, 30:43; 9. Jeanette Peterson, 31:38; 10. Kathy Ehrhardt, 31:51; 11. Susan Pfaffe, 32:32; 12. Gail Moore, 33:19; 13. Toni Steward, 35:31; 14. Cathy Zorbas, 35:32; 15. Martha Cooper, 35:32; 16. Phyllis Erickson, 36:09; 17. Tammy Turnbull, 36:46; 18. Jennie Russell, 36:50; 19. Sandy Marrs, 39:51; 20. Monica Frost, 43:49; 21. Liz Chase, 47:46; 22. Melissa Rowe, 51:05; 23. Maria Moesch, 54:17; 24. Janelle Baalke, 54:22; 25. Elizabeth Dimick, 54:22; 26. Nicole Watts, 1:01:17.

55 and over — 1. Sue Shaw, 33:55; 2. Sammie Cole, 42:04; 3. Trin McConnell, 44:39; 4. M. Starrs Armstrong, 46:06; 5. Linda Story, 46:07; 6. Debora Fullinck, 47:59; 7. Betty Dean, 48:12; 8. Sofie Chase, 48:25; 9. Carol Freas, 54:55.

10 miles

0 to 30 — 1. Jessica Summer, 1:22:51.

31 and over — 1. Jenni Mishler, 1:13:47; 2. Connie Best, 1:13:47; 3. Satorene Jackson, 1:20:04; 4. Melissa Stavola, 1:22:21; 5. Kristine Brink, 1:24:34; 6. Darla Vanderwall, 1:25:45; 7. Pamela Burns, 1:25:46; 8. Stephanie Ramos, 1:29:02; 9. Amy Blackwell, 1:33:47; 10. Heidi Metteer, 1:36:08; 11. Shelli Furlong, 1:38:16; 12. Diedre O’Neill, 1:38:17; 13. Connie Wheat, 1:56:49; 14. Maria Sweppy, 2:00:08.



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