August opened with a lighter slate of national ultramarathons. That meant that just a handful of Massachusetts residents headed out-of-state to race, while a few others stayed close to home to tackle the East End Trail Races in Easton, Mass. (to be addressed in a separate article). Those who went beyond the Bay State didn’t venture too far. Neighboring Vermont and New York provided regional challenges – including an electrifying ultramarathon debut by Medford’s Gabriel Miller. The Moosalamoo 36-miler and the summer edition of Beast of Burden are featured in this week’s roundup.
Gabriel Miller made quite the impression in his ultramarathon debut. The 23-year-old resident of Medford, Mass., opted for the Moosalamoo 36-miler on Saturday, Aug. 4, in Goshen, Vt.
The small, family-style race celebrated its seventh year on the trails through the mountains surrounding the Blueberry Hill Inn, challenging runners with long climbs as well as stinging nettles and mud. Miller handled it all just fine. He dominated the race and won with a more than half-hour cushion. His time of 5:33:28 established a new men’s course record by 22 minutes, bettering Leigh Schmitt’s mark of 5:55:38 from 2017.
Miller’s closest competitor, 44-year-old Henry Pratt of Highland, N.Y., finished in 6:05:06, followed by a pair of Massachusetts residents. Great Barrington resident Jesse Carter, 32, finished third in 6:15:03, followed by Housatonic resident Evan Hardcastle, 40, in 6:23:52.
While the men’s winner hailed from the Bay State, so did the women’s runner-up. Lisa Rising, 25, of Cambridge, was in the hunt for a victory throughout the day. She and 33-year-old Courtney Giles of Waterbury, Vt., ran in close contact for much of the day before turning in what nearly amounted to a photo finish. Giles managed a slight lead on Rising and earned the win in 6:50:43. Rising finished just 25 seconds later in 6:51:08, good for second place.
The performance was just the latest in what has been a big year for Rising. Already to her credit in 2018 are finishes at the Orcas Island 100 in Washington, the West Highland Way 95-miler in Great Britain, and the Bear Brook Trail Marathon in New Hampshire. She will race the Castle Peak 100K in California on Aug. 18, followed by the Kilkenny Ridge 50-miler in New Hampshire in September and the Stone Cat 50-miler in Massachusetts in November.
Thirty-six runners finished the Moosalamoo 36-miler within 12 hours. Other Massachusetts residents among the finishers were Watertown’s Philip Cody, 25, in 7:44:45; Charlestown’s Colin Barry, 34, in 8:11:03; and Billerica’s Bryan O’Keefe, 35, in 11:18:53.
Beast of Burden – Summer Edition
John Schwartz-Moore has spent the past few years inching closer to running 100 miles in one push, upping his total at a variety of 24-hour events. On Aug. 4-5 in Lockport, N.Y., the 40-year-old from Dorchester, Mass., hit that milestone for the first time when he completed the Beast of Burden 100-mile summer race.
Beast of Burden also features a winter edition, and both races use the same course that consists of four out-and-backs on the Erie Canal Towpath. The main differences are the weather. Rather than frigid temperatures and snow, Schwartz-Moore overcame scorching heat and humidity along the way to reaching his goal. Schwartz-Moore finished 10th overall and was the ninth-place male in 26:44:22.
Gina Dhaliwal Schneider, 34, Newark, Del., was the overall champion and first-place finisher in the women’s category, posting a time of 19:40:34. Adam Russell, 39, of Rome, Pa., finished second overall and won the men’s category in 19:48:07. The top five overall finishers posted sub-24-hour times. Twenty-six runners finished the 100-miler within the 30-hour time limit.
Up next for Schwartz-Moore is the Tideland 24 24-hour race on Nov. 3 in Cedar Point, N.C. It’ll be his third year in a row attending that event. He ran 68.88 miles in 2016 and 85.4174 miles in 2017.
Additionally, there were 42 finishers of the 50-mile race led by Amanda Tomasikiewicz, 32, of Indianapolis, Ind., who was the overall champion and first-place finisher in the women’s category in 8:55:21. The men’s winner and second overall finisher was William Gunn, 46, of Durham, N.C., in 10:13:52. No Massachusetts residents were among the 50-mile finishers.
*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.