While Western States received a well-deserved spotlight on June 23-24, Massachusetts ultrarunners took on other races around the country, too, from Vermont and New York in the East to South Dakota in the upper Midwest and California out West. Kehr Davis’s three-peat at Manitou’s Revenge highlighted the weekend, but we also dug into some results from last month to include Infinitus finishers. As usual this time of year, there’s plenty to read in this week’s roundup.
Kehr Davis continued her dominance at the notorious Manitou’s Revenge 54-miler on June 23 in Phoenicia, N.Y.
Davis, of Great Barrington, Mass., has earned her place among legends at the notoriously technical race through the Catskill Mountains. Unlike most races of the approximately 50-mile distance, Manitou’s Revenge is so remote and challenging that it gives runners 24 hours to navigate the 15,000 feet of vertical gain over highly technical, mostly forest-covered trails.
Davis didn’t need anywhere near all of that time, however. She was the women’s winner for the third year in a row, and she capped her three-peat by finishing in 13:49:15, good for 13th overall out of 104 finishers.
The men’s champion, Andy Vermilyea of Castleton, Vt., finished in 10:47:42, holding off runner-up Ben Nephew in the process. Nephew, of Westborough, Mass., finished in 10:54:42 and was the only other sub-11-hour finisher.
John Kemp of Sheffield, Mass., also earned a spot among the fastest finishers. He placed 12th overall in 13:43:42.
The women’s record board was rewritten at the Catamount 50K on Saturday, June 23, in Stowe, Vt., as the fastest ladies’ field in the five-year history of the race delivered a highly competitive battle with the top runners separated by mere minutes.
Britta Clark, Emily Cousens, Christin Doneski, Katka Smolarova, and Bess Ritter were minutes – and sometimes just seconds – apart for the duration of the race. Less than three minutes separated first through fifth as they rolled through the 25K mark of the race and headed back onto the course for their second loop. Ritter held the lead in 2:11:10, but the other four were hot on her heels. Ultimately, Ritter’s lead didn’t last. Clark, Cousens, Doneski, and Smolarova inched ahead of her as the race continued.
Ultimately, Clark, 24, of Goshen, Vt., pulled away for the victory in a new course-record time of 4:22:00. Cousens, 26, of Sunapee, N.H., was a close second in 4:24:13, good for second all-time on the course, and Doneski, 47, of Hopkinton, N.H., finished third with the third-best time in course history in 4:24:30. Smolarova, 28, of Boston, Mass., earned a fourth-place finish and tallied the fifth-best time in women’s course history in 4:32:59. Ritter, 30, of Quaker Hill, Conn., finished fifth in 4:34:08 and delivered the sixth-best time in course history.
While the women stole the show, the men also had noteworthy performance. Brett Mastrangelo, 26, of Chester, Vt., turned in the second-fastest time in men’s course history while winning in 3:54:05. The race for second was tight with 29-year-old Kanoa King of Portsmouth, N.H., edging 36-year-old Jake Dissinger of Northampton, Mass., by less than two minutes. King finished in 4:04:01, good for eight all-time on the course, and Dissinger finished in 4:05:30, good for ninth on the record board. Not far behind him, two more Massachusetts residents – 39-year-old Jack Bailey of Medway and 40-year-old Noah Vihinen of Wenham – earned top-10 finishes. Bailey was fifth overall in 4:20:59, followed a few seconds later by Vihinen in 4:21:18, good for sixth place.
The top 35 finishers all broke the five-hour barrier, including Tim Finocchio, 40, of Holbrook, Mass. (4:37:18); Charn McAllister, 35, of Norfolk, Mass. (4:39:07); Ethan Abeles, 45, of Easthampton, Mass. (4:41:31); and Dan Healey, 57, of Ipswich, Mass. (4:57:54).
Other Massachusetts residents among the 154 finishers within eight hours were: Lori Wetzel, 45, of Danvers in 5:07:57; Richard Garro, 50, of Acton in 5:18:14; Nate Morgan, 25, of Hamilton in 5:21:54; Noah Randall, 25, of Medford in 5:21:59; Stephen McCaffrey, 59, of Charlestown in 5:23:12; Kristen Peterson, 27, of Cambridge in 5:24:48; Jeannie Friedman, 28, of Brookline in 5:36:21; Andrew McLaughlin, 64, of Georgetown in 5:38:38; Sam Farnsworth, 57, of Stow in 5:42:35; Jeremiah Clark, 31, of Clinton in 5:46:14; Andrew Wolff, 39, of Norfolk in 5;46:45; Lizzy Dickey, 31, of Boston in 5:47:20; Meaghan Corbett, 38, of Rowley in 5:54:37; Rebecca Hill, 45, of Ipswich in 5:57:58; Bob Warren, 57, of Attleboro in 6:00:17; Humberto Silva, 37, of Cambridge in 6:01:47; Kimberly Hula, 35, of Arlington in 6:22:22; Alex Chao, 23, of Cambridge in 6:45:20; Leanne Tierney, 54, of Boxford in 6:52:37; Timothy Parcell, 36, of Brighton in 7:01:40; Jessica Howland, 40, of Worcester in 7:03:00; Roy Van Buren, 56, of Woburn in 7:08:50; and Sophia Farnsworth, 23, of Stow in 7:40:26.
Many on the Genny 40M
The second annual Many on the Genny 40-miler took place on Saturday, June 23, in Castile, N.Y. The race took runners along the singletrack and horse trails through the gorge in Letchworth State Park, running along one side of the gorge and then the other. They climbed more than 6,000 feet during the course of the event while running on mostly remote trails.
Philip Nesbitt, 31, of Caledonia, N.Y., earned the win on the men’s side with a time of 6:23:33. Meanwhile, 26-year-old Ellie Pell of Interlaken, N.Y., finished third overall and set a new women’s course record with a time of 6:49:43. Runners had 14 hours to finish the race, and the top five finished in less than seven hours. A total of 106 runners finished the race, including Seng-Lai Tan, 46, of Sudbury, Mass., who completed the course in 10:55:41.
Black Hills 100
One hundred miles is the signature event at the Black Hills 100, but the endurance festival also offers 50-mile and 50K ultramarathons and a 30K. No Massachusetts residents took part in the 100-miler after South Deerfield’s Brian and Amy Rusiecki withdrew a few weeks ago, but one Bay State resident raced the 50-miler on Friday, June 22, in Sturgis, S.D.
Adam Flyte, 29, of Northampton, earned his first 50-mile finish when he placed 50th overall in 13:47:40. The race had 57 finishers within 15 hours, led by 37-year-old Wynn Davis of Stillwater, Minn., who posted a winning time of 8:33:58, 10 minutes ahead of runner-up Barry Hein, 44, of Sioux Falls, S.D. The top four finishers completed the race in less than 10 hours.
Rodeo Valley Trail Run
Evan Weinberg’s first ultramarathon was mighty scenic. The 27-year-old resident of Brighton, Mass., traveled to Sausalito, Calif., to take on the Rodeo Valley Trail Run 50K on Saturday, June 23, and the raced on a course that wound through the mostly smooth trails of the Marin Headlands and featured endless views of the Pacific Ocean.
Weinberg successfully navigated the course and its nearly 6,000 feet of climbing to finish 47th overall in 6:42:39. Canaan Vallejos, 31, of Santa Monica, Calif., earned the victory in 4:09:19, three minutes ahead of runner-up William Bertrand, 23, of San Francisco, Calif.
Sixty-six runners finished the race within the 8 1/2-hour time limit, and the top nine finished in less than five hours.
The New England presence was small at the 45th running of the Western States Endurance Run on June 23-24 from Squaw Valley to Auburn, Calif. Just five New Englanders toed the starting line at the sport’s original 100-miler, but four of them finished – as did a pair of former Massachusetts residents.
The top New England finisher was 38-year-old Aliza Lapierre of Williston, Vt., who was the eighth-place female and 31stoverall finisher in a speedy 19:58:17. Two more Vermont residents – 44-year-old Mike Weigand of Middlebury and 39-year-old Landon Fenimore of Burlington – also finished. Weigand completed the race in 23:51:57, while Fenimore finished in 25:57:33. Additionally, 63-year-old John Peabody of Wakefield, R.I., finished in 29:45:17, just under the 30-hour time limit.
One Massachusetts resident took part in the race, but 55-year-old Kim Vanyo of Winchester dropped after 15.8 miles. Two former Bay State residents did finish, however. They were former Winchester resident David Huss, 34, now of Seattle, Wash., in 23:54:13, and former Boston resident Kyle Pietari, 31, now of Edgewater, Colo, in 16:54:23. For Pietari, it was his third year in a row finishing Western States and his third time placing in the top 10. He was sixth overall this year after finishing 10th in 2017 and eighth in 2016.
How far can your legs go? How about your mind? The Endurance Society gives runners the opportunity to answer both of those questions at the annual Infinitus Endurance Runs. This year’s event took place May 24-June 3 at Blueberry Hill Ski Center in Goshen, Vt., and included its standard 888K, Deca Marathon (a 27-mile loop once a day for 10 straight days), 250-miler, 100-miler, and 88K ultramarathons as well as a marathon and an 8-miler.
The event’s signature event – the 888K – challenged runners to circle the 20-mile and 7-mile loops 20 times, plus one additional lap to secure the ultimate distance. Of the 15 runners who took on that challenge, two successfully completed the race, marking the first time there has been more than one finisher of that distance. Greg Salvensen, 31, of Santa Barbara, Calif., got it done first in 219:23:00, and he was later joined at the finish line by the first female finisher in race history, 37-year-old Helene Dumais of Silver Spring, Md., in 238:48:00.
Two runners completed the Deca Marathon. They were 59-year-old Barry Hufford of Lebanon, Pa., in 86:21:00, and 71-year-old John Spelko of Monson, Mass., in 89:38:00.
Six of the 14 starters in the 250-miler finished, and just 17 of the 48 starters of the 100-miler finished within the 48-hour time limit. Included among them were Massachusetts residents John Legler, 21, of Auburn in 46:02:00, and 40-year-old Mark Leuner of Brookline in 48:00:00.
Additionally, 48 of the 59 starters of the 88K finished within the 24-hour time limit. Included among them were six Massachusetts residents. Sam Farnsworth, 57, of Stow finished in 12:47:00; Torben ARend, 47, of Westwood finished in 13:16; Desmond McMahon, 55, of Centerville finished in 15:32:00; Matthew Reardon, 31, of Millis finished in 16:20:00; Marry Torres, 36, of Methuen finished in 17:56:00, and 24-year-old Derek Brinkmann of Pembroke finished in 18:37:00.
*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.