East Coast Racing: Mid-March to Mid-April
Despite the weak economy, record numbers of participants turned out for early spring trail races on the East Coast, as trail runners cut back to two meals a day and get second jobs rather than miss their favorite races.
Here’s some recent highlights.
- Tiadaghton Trail Challenge 20k (3/27 – Mile Run, PA) : This may be the best new race in the East. A very technical mountain course, similar to the popular Pennsylvania Grand Slam events. Steve Templin and teenager Michelle Herman took the wins over husband and wife trail superstars Jim and Michaele Rayburn, who were running their Boston Marathon tuneup. (full results)
- Backyard Burn Spring Race #3 (3/28 – Fountainhead Regional Park, near Fairfax, VA) : The most technical of DC area’s Ex2 Adventures four race spring series courses. Consistent series frontrunner Ahmed Qureshi was the overall ten mile winner with Sarah Mikalauskas winning the women’s title by four minutes. (full results)
- Croom Fool’s Run 15 Miler (4/3 – central FL’s Croom Hiking Trail in Brooksville) : Kerry Kitchen won her second straight Croom 15, but only by thirteen seconds over Kimberly Moore. Pedro Rodriguez scored the overall win in an event which included 50 mile and 50k ultras. (full results)
- Running The River’s Edge (4/3 – Canton, GA) : A 4.5 mile race in Canton, Georgia’s Boling Park. Dirty Spokes does a great job in designing hardcore, challenging courses for those that don’t have time to train for the longer races. Seventeen year old Zack Jordan came out on top in this one. Lisa Randall was the women’s winner, finishing sixth overall. (full results)
- Mountain-To-Sea Trail 12 Mile Challenge (4/10 – Wake Forest, NC) : The first year for this event. The Mountains-To-Sea Trail stretches for over 1,000 miles across the state. Duncan Hoge, last year’s Uwharrie challenge 8 mile winner, and Leslie Beckwith both had large margins of victory in this point-to-point race. (full results – pdf)
- Urban Environmental Challenge (4/11 – Van Cortlandt Park The Bronx, NYC) : One of NYC’s only true trail race. Will Thanhouser was the only athlete to complete the 10k in under forty minutes. Last year’s Bear Mountain The North Face Challenge 21k winner Cassandra Miller was the fastest female. (full results – pdf)
- Bimbler’s Bash 10k (4/11 – Guilford, CT) A very technical course with constant elevation changes. Runners enjoyed the “down on all fours” rock scrambles. Will McDonough came across the line first, while Kerry Arsenault picked up her second win in three years. (full results)
- Merrimack River Trail Race (4/11 – Andover, MA) : A fast 10 miler, and race #2 on New England’s Grand Tree Series schedule. Gina Lucrezi backed up her series’ opening Nipmuck 16 miler win with another dominating performance, missing the course record by just 15 seconds. Kevin Tilton won the men’s race for the second time in three years, defeating Ben Nephew by just 11 seconds. (full results)
- Hyner View Trail Challenge (4/17 – Lock Haven, PA) : The fourth annual “Hyner” kicked off the 2010 Pennsylvania Grand Slam and was once again a Trailrunner Magazine Trophy Series event. This is a spectacular 16+ mile single track mountain course with over 4,200 feet of climbing. Over 1,000 runners entered making this one of the biggest trail races in the East. Rick Fessler scored his first Challenge win over two time winner, Oregon’s Jeffery Buechler. Meira Minard from nearby State College also won Hyner for the first time. (full results)
East Coast Trail Races – May 2010
Here’s a few of the trail events May has to offer along the eastern seaboard. Many more trail races can be found on the full schedule at EastCoastTrailRacing.com. Anyway, here goes:
- Muddy Marathon (5/1 – Rockaway, NJ) : Race director Rick McNulty continues to bring great trail events to north Jersey. The course is a seven-mile loop featuring 1,600 feet of elevation change, wooded paths, old ski trails, and open fields. Also a marathon relay, as well as half and quarter marathon races.
- Seven Sister’s Trail Race (5/2 – Amherst, MA) : A twelve-mile out-and-back single track roller coaster ride along the ridgeline of The Mount Holyoke range. The event also boasts over 3,700 feet of climbing. Race #4 in The Grand Tree Series.
- Mrs. Smith’s Challenge (5/8 – Lancaster, PA) : Women only. A five-mile Mother’s Day weekend tradition in Lancaster County’s Central Park. Some great single track, a little cross country, and a covered bridge crossing. A very well run event. There’s also one for the men on Father’s Day in the same location.
- Dark And Dirty Nightime Trail Run (5/15 – Reading, PA) : Advertised as “6.66 miles, one hell of a distance”. Starts at 8:15 p.m., so you will be running in the dark. The course takes you on some of the more runnable trails overlooking the city, but is still very tricky. Pretzel City Sports puts on some of the most well organized, fun events in the East. Up to 5 awards in some age groups. A great post race party.
- Dirty Dog Trail Run 15k (5/15 – Charleston, WV ) : A challenging mix of single track mountain trails and unimproved dirt roads. There are two long climbs and several sections of rolling ridgelines. Runners are encouraged to run with their dogs, even unleashed after the first mile.
- Uwharrie Rumble (5/15 – Troy, NC) Hit the trails of the Uwharrie National Forest. Choose from half-marathon or 8k distances. The course ranges from very technical to two lane gravel roads. This is a weekend-long event that also features mountain bike races. The race is part of the Carolina Trail Run Series.
- Soapstone Mountain Trail Races (5/16 – Stafford Springs, CT) Another Grand Tree event, this one from the Shenipsit Striders. Held in Shenipsit State Forest, this remote trail features dirt roads, single track, and a rocky stream bed. Runners choices are twenty-four, and six kilometer races.
- Mount Tabor (5/22 – Mount Tabor Park, Dallas, GA) : Two races, eight and four miles. Great single and double track trails, rolling hills, climbs, and roots. Part of the Dirty Spokes Trail Running Series.
- Xterra Paris Mountain Trail Run (5/29 – Greenville, SC) : Held on some great mountainside trails in Paris Mountain State Park. This is a very demanding race on some of the East’s most challenging trails. Joe Hammond and Margeret Smith hold the course records.
[The East Coast Trail Racing Report is a monthly iRunFar feature highlighting recent East Coast marathon or shorter trail racing results and presenting some trail race options for the coming month. States covered include Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, DC, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.]