Race in search of new director | SteamboatToday.com

Race in search of new director

Thrasher to step down as coordinator

— Four years of directing the Mount Werner Classic has made Tasha Thrasher one of the race’s biggest fans.

That’s what makes her departure as the race coordinator and the uncertain future of the race – one of the most popular legs of the Steamboat Springs Running Series – so troubling, she said.

“It really is a great race,” Thrasher said. “It’s the difficulty that separates it. A lot more of the series races are becoming more trail races, but this is the only one solely on dirt.”

The Classic includes two main races: a 5-mile, completely uphill race from the base of Steamboat Ski Area to Thunderhead Peak, and a 12-mile course that goes up to the top of Storm Peak, then back down to Thunderhead.

When the race kicks off this year on Aug. 2, it will be the final time Thrasher will serve as one of its administrators. She said in her four years in charge, the race became like a child to her. Now that she has her own child – a newborn baby boy named Tristan – she said she realized she has to give up her position with the race.

“Now that I have a newborn, I knew I wouldn’t be able to devote the time the race needs,” she said. “We are in search of a race director for 2009, hopefully someone who could get on board for 2008 to check out the situation.”

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Thrasher is only playing a minor role this year as two others help organize the run.

Taking over won’t require a massive amount of work, running series director Shannon Carlin said. At the most basic level, individual race directors are only responsible for marking the course, organizing volunteers, establishing aid stations, managing a small post-race brunch and helping distribute prizes.

The planning can be as big or small as the director wishes, Carlin said.

Thrasher was quick to point out that anyone taking over after her tenure would have an immediate head start.

“We’re a lot more organized than when I first took over,” Thrasher said. “The Running Series has really stepped up and helped the last couple years by getting a lot of the prizes. Now we have tried to put a book together that has guidelines for the next director – a timeline, a list of things to do and contacts. We’re really a lot more dialed in now.”

All those steps in organization haven’t helped land a director yet, however. Carlin said without a director in place for next year, the run might have to be canceled.

That’s not something that sits well with Thrasher.

“It’s such a great race. I don’t want to see it go away,” she said. “It’s just so rewarding when you’re standing at the top and so many people come up to you. Last year, people from 10 states came to Steamboat to run that race. I’d just hate to see anything happen to it.”

To help

Anyone interested in helping organize this year’s Mount Werner Classic and take over next year’s race can contact Shannon Carlin at (720) 987-8335 or boo_wag@yahoo.com