Huie, Walker win 10K at 10,000
Steamboat Springs — With the combination of ideal weather conditions and a serene, high-altitude mountain course, fair-weather runners and die-hard Steamboat Springs Running Series regulars turned out for Sunday’s 10K at 10,000 feet race.
“It was awesome. We had 149 entrants,” race director Chuck O’Connell said. “I think that’s the largest turnout we’ve seen. There were a lot of out-of-towners and also a lot of folks from in town. The trail was in great condition, and with the weather, it was just a beautiful day.”
Starting at 10 a.m., runners left on a challenging loop leaving from the Rabbit Ears Monument near the Dumont Lake Campground on mountain trails that took them up to nearly 10,400 feet before heading back on a U.S. Forest Service road to the finish, which O’Connell said was “plenty warm, but comfortable.”
Running over mixed gravel with some tough terrain and gaining about 800 feet of elevation on a course slightly longer than a traditional 10K, 6.2-mile course, O’Connell said he was glad no one got lost during the race.
“There was a guy and one lady that turned an ankle, but we were able to get them iced down at the campsite,” O’Connell said.
Although no racers were able to beat Paul Clifft’s winning time of 39 minutes, 44 seconds from the past year, Steamboat’s J.J. Huie won the race in 44:11.
“At altitude and around 6.7 miles, that’s a fast time for that course,” O’Connell said.
Allen Belshaw followed Huie with a time of 45:54, followed by Tim Sandell’s third-place time of 48:25.
On the women’s side, Greeley’s Sarah Walker took first in 52:35, followed by Lili Tenney in 53:22, and Jenna Gruber 56:33.
The next running series event, the second to last of the season, is Saturday’s Kremmling Road Kill, a trail half marathon and 10K in Kremmling. See http://www.runningseries.com for more details.
– To reach Dave Shively, call 871-4253 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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Steamboat Springs is expected to finish off July with slightly more precipitation than in previous years.