MassUltra Roundup: Pineland Farms and Rockin Choccolocco

Massachusetts Runners Dominate at Pineland Farms

The Salomon Trail Running Festival at Pineland Farms attracted runners from throughout New England to New Gloucester, Maine, but many of the speediest runners in the ultramarathon distances had one thing in common: they hailed from Massachusetts.

The overall winners of both the 50-mile and 50K distances Sunday, May 29, were Bay State residents, as were the women’s champion in the 50K and the women’s 50-mile runner-up. Numerous other top-10 placers also call Massachusetts home.

All in all, it was a dominant day for the Bay State.

The state’s presence was particularly strong in the 50-mile race where four of the top seven finishers hailed from Massachusetts. None were faster than Patrick Caron.

Caron, a 19-year-old from Needham, Mass., continued his assault on the top position at ultramarathons this year, notching his third victory in four tries. After placing second overall at the TARC “To Hale and Back” 6-Hour Race in March, Caron rattled off first-place finishes at the Goat Hill 50K in April and the G.A.C. Mother’s Day 6-Hour Run in May.

On Sunday, Caron again claimed victory. His winning time at Pineland Farms was 6:14:31, more than 11 minutes ahead of any other competitor.

Only one runner has ever gone faster than Caron on the course, and it’s another Massachusetts resident. Brian Rusiecki, of South Deerfield, Mass., won the event from 2009-2013. His times from 2009, 2010, and 2011 are the three fastest in course history (6:02:54; 6:06:32; 6:13:38).

Second place was claimed by 42-year-old Sebastien Roulier of Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, in 6:25:56. Roulier won the event in 2014. Michael Austin, 34, of Delmar, N.Y., placed a distant third in 6:41:16. Austin was the 2015 champion.

Narrowly missing a spot on the podium was Sylvain Olier of Andover, Mass. Already this year, Olier finished third overall at The Pistol Ultra Run 100-miler, third overall at the Runamuck 50K, and second at the G.A.C. Mother’s Day 6-Hour Run. At Pineland Farms, the 40-year-old finished fifth overall and eight minutes out of third in 6:49:45.

Eric Ahern also had a strong performance, finishing sixth overall in 6:54:02. It marked his fourth top-10 ultra finish of the year and was his first race since placing eighth overall at The Canyons Endurance Runs 100K on part of the legendary Western States course in Foresthill, Calif., in early May.

Ted Macmahon, 49, of Harvard, Mass., finished seventh overall in 6:58:07. It marked a 30-minute improvement from his 2015 performance when he finished third.

Meanwhile, two of the top three female finishers were Bay Staters. Maartje Bastings of Jamaica Plain was among them. Bastings, 32, who was the fourth female finisher overall at the Rocky Raccoon 100-miler in February, was the women’s runner-up (24th overall) at Pineland Farms in 7:54:37.

Ying Tao, 31, of Maynard, Mass., was the third-place female (26th overall) for the second straight year, finishing in 8:05:12. It was a more than 11-minute improvement from 2015. Neither Bastings nor Tao could quite catch female champion Lindsay Simpson. Simpson, 39, of Waterbury, Vt., finished 16th overall in 7:40:33.

A total of 126 runners finished the 50-mile race. Complete results can be found here.

Meanwhile, the race for the 50K title came down to a pair of Bay Staters as Erik Hinrichsen and Logan Wilson pulled away from the pack. Hinrichsen, 27, of Brighton, Mass., earned the victory by less than two minutes, finishing in 3:43:16. Wilson, 21, of Boston, crossed the finish line in 3:45:04 and took runner-up honors, more than five minutes ahead of the third-place finisher.

Joining Hinrichsen and Wilson in the top 10 were Gregory Esbitt, 42, of Salem, Mass., who placed sixth in 4:06:45; and Matt Desrosiers, 29, of West Springfield, Mass., who finished ninth in 4:14:54.

The battle for the women’s 50K victory was fierce as the top three females finished within less than two minutes of each other. Victoria Macias, 27, of Cambridge, Mass., earned the women’s victory while finishing 14th overall in 4:23:21. Just 70 seconds later, runner-up Julia Huffman, 31, of Manchester, N.H., crossed the finish line, while third-place female (and 16th overall) Jess Kutcher, 38, of North Kingstown, R.I., finished in 4:25:11.

A total of 246 runners finished the 50K. Full results can be found here.

Another Alabama Victory for Canty

Alabama has been mighty good to Liz Canty.

Canty, a 24-year-old resident of Hudson, Mass., has competed in three trail ultras in Alabama so far in 2016. She has finished in the top 10 overall and been the female champion all three times.

Her latest victory came Saturday, May 28, at the Rockin Choccolocco 50K in Heflin, Ala., where she placed fourth overall and took top female honors. Canty’s time of 5:26:32 was the second-fastest time ever on the course for a female in the four-year history of the event and just 3 1/2 minutes off of the women’s course record. She missed placing in the top three overall by less than three minutes.

Michael Richie, 35, of Atlanta, Ga., was the overall champion in 4:54:39.

Earlier this year, Canty was the women’s champion at the Black Warrior 50K in Moulton, Ala., as well as at the Oak Mountain 50K in Pelham, Ala.

Canty will compete in the TARC 100K in October in Westwood, Mass.

*Editor’s Note: Results are found on a variety of sites, including ultrasignup.com, UltraRunning Magazine, and official race websites. We do the best we can to find as many results as possible to report on and recognize the local ultrarunning community.

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