Joe McConaughy averaged more than 50 miles per day for more than 53 consecutive days en route to logging the fastest known time on the 2,660-mile Pacific Crest Trail in 2014, so it came as little surprise when he had another FKT in his sights Saturday, Nov. 5, at the Stone Cat 50 in Ipswich, Mass.
A former Boston College distance-running standout, the 25-year-old McConaughy started fast and never let up through all four of his 12.5-mile loops of the course at Willowdale State Forest.
Unlike his epic crossing of the PCT, a record time narrowly eluded McConaughy this time. Victory, however, did not. The Boston resident crossed the finish line in a winning time of 6:12:24, less than two minutes shy of Sebastien Roulier’s mark of 6:10:55 from 2013.
McConaughy’s closest competition came from 25-year-old Gregory Krathwohl of Ipswich who was a distant second in 6:36:45. Third place went to Jake Dissinger. The resident of Leeds, Mass., celebrated his 35th birthday by running 50 miles in 7:00:29, capping a monster 2016 racing season that included three first-place finishes in ultramarathons and a top-10 finish at the Vermont 100.
While the top three overall finishers hailed from Massachusetts, they had company in the top 10 by a few other residents of the Commonwealth. Matthew Veiga, 29, of Lynn, Mass., finished fifth overall in 7:06:37; Will Swenson, 44, of Andover, Mass., placed sixth in 7:07:37; and Jack Bailey, 37, of Longmeadow, Mass., was eighth in 7:28:41.
While the men’s course record narrowly survived, Aliza Lapierre’s women’s course record of 7:06:13 wasn’t threatened this year. Even so, Deirdre Lowe delivered a performance that has become typical of her 2016 racing season. The 37-year-old from Salem, Mass., put together a steady, strong race and cruised to victory for the third straight outing. Just like she did at the TARC Summer Classic 50K in August and the Ghost Train 30-miler in October, Lowe was the women’s champion. Her time of 8:16:18 was good for top female honors and 16th place overall. Alex Jospe, 32, of Newton, Mass., was the second-place female and 26th overall in 8:33:55. Yuki Chorney, 44, of Mount Vernon, N.H., was the third woman to finish and 28th overall in 8:41:32.
A total of 110 runners finished the race in less than 12 1/2 hours.
Click here to view the complete results.