While women’s field at this year’s Massanutten 100 does not have the numbers the men’s field does (20 ladies in the race versus 140 lads), it promises to be an interesting race in its own way. With so many very talented men in the race, someone is going to end up nailing a fast time for the win. The tiny women’s field means it’s actually much more wide open. A speedster could run away from the field, a long shot could nail it, or slow and steady could win the race. Be prepared to follow this weekend’s action with iRunFar’s 2008 MMT 100 Women’s Racecard. [Get your Men’s MMT Racecard here.]
- #8 – Janine Baker – Ran a 9:54 at Mountain Masochist and 9:58 at Collegiate Peaks last year. Has speed at shorter distances. Living in Colorado should help her cause.
- #20 – Kari Brown – Kari was second at last year’s MMT with a time of 30:30, but gets the nod for her 5:07 Seneca Greenway 50k performance this March.
- #111 – Kerry Owens – From 2004 through 2006, Kerry’s MMT times improved from 29:09 to 28:41 to 26:39 – times good enough for second, third, and third place finishes respectively. Owens has many solid finishes at numerous rugged 100 mile racers. She is tough, experienced, and knows a thing or two about running MMT. A lock for the podium.
- #127 – Eva Rosvold – Eva ran solid times at Bull Run Run (8:43) and JFK (8:17) last year and won the Bel Monte 50 miler this March. Rosvold has two 100 mile finishes to her credit: 26:34 at Kettle Moraine ’04 and 28:41 at Bighorn ’07.
- #140 – Amy Sproston – The speedster in the women’s race. If Amy runs smart and stays upright, the race is hers to lose. So far this year Amy’s won the inaugural Coyote Two Moons 100k and has been second at the Holiday Lake and Promised Land 50ks. Last spring, she won both Bull Run Run 50 miler and the Seneca Greenway 50k. Sproston has a lone 100 mile finish – a 31:21 at Bighorn ’07. She can trim 6+ hours off that if she’s on this weekend.
- #148 – Laurel Valley – Try searching for results for someone named “Laurel Valley” and you’ll come to the point where all you need to know is she ran a 7:04 50 mile back in 2002 and 4:09 50k a year later. Good enough for me to wrap this up and go for a run.
Also worth mentioning for Top 5 contention are Susan Donnelly (#39), Challen Edwards (#41), Lisa Fleming (#47), Jen Foster (#48), Ruthann Helfrick (#67); Inga Olsen (#110). The course is so tough, the field so small, and the competition so open, it may be a good to put bet down on one of these ladies to place. Admittedly, the lack of heat or rain in this weekend’s forecast helps out the more predictable front runners. Bad conditions at MMT = a rocky, chaotic nightmare. A very long nightmare.
And to answer your question, yes, I did try to pare down the “worth mentioning” list, but all the women gave me reason to think they could run a solid enough MMT to go Top 5. To give you perspective, last year the fifth place woman at MMT ran 33:41 with 31:21 taking third. For the record, I think both spots will require significantly faster times this year..
How do you think the women’s race will shake out after all is said and run this weekend?