MassUltra Roundup: Keys, Cruel Jewel, Massanutten, Manchester 2 Monadnock, and Mind the Ducks

Lori Mitchener’s 100-mile debut was a dandy as the Lynnfield resident brought home a first-place finish from the Florida Keys. A half-dozen more New England residents endured the grueling Cruel Jewel 100-miler in Georgia, and six runners from the Bay State brought home finisher’s buckles from the Massanutten 100-miler in Virginia. In addition to those races, we have Manchester 2 Monadnock in New Hampshire and the Mind the Ducks 12-Hour Ultra from New York covered in this week’s roundup.

Keys 100

Lori Mitchener delivered a dynamite performance in her 100-mile debut at the 12th annual Keys 100 on May 18-19 in the Florida Keys. Mitchener and her fellow runners took on a point-to-point course that began in Key Largo and followed US Highway 1 to Key West. Most of the race took place on the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail – a paved pedestrian and bike path that hugs the highway – and spent about 25 miles running along the shoulder of the highway.

Mitchener was the first woman and fifth overall competitor to reach Higgs Beach and cross the finish line. The 42-year-old resident of Lynnfield, Mass., posted a winning time of 18:41:16. Her closest competitor, 30-year-old Megan Alvarado of Springfield, Va., was the eighth overall finisher and women’s runner-up in 19:50:20.

Brett Sanborn, 33, of Albuquerque, N.M., was the men’s winner and top overall finisher in 13:20:18.

John Schwartz-Moore was the only other New England resident among the 134 runners to finish the race within 32 hours. Schwartz-Moore, 41, of Dorchester, Mass., finished 68th overall in 28:26:17.

In the Keys’ 50K race, 55-year-old James Nelson of West Hartford, Conn., placed second overall – nine minutes off the lead – in 4:55:03.

Cruel Jewel 100

The Cruel Jewel 100 is a race that lives up to its name. The out-and-back course in the Chattahoochee National Forest of northern Georgia punishes runners with a grueling 33,000 feet of vertical gain, and it also throws in 5.9 bonus miles – so that 100-mile belt buckle requires quite a bit extra to be earned.

Six New England residents were up to the challenge and successfully beat the 48-hour cutoff at the seventh annual event on May 17-19 at Vogel State Park in Blairsville, Ga.

Brian Huffman, 35, of Framingham, Mass., and David Huffman, 40, of South Burlington, Vt., were the top finishers from the region. They ran the race together and finished just seconds apart in 63rd and 64th place, Brian in 38:16:44 and David in 38:16:46.

Dima Feinhaus, 56, of Waban, Mass., placed 83rd in 40:53:04; Carolyn Shreck, 47, of Hampton, N.H., was 95th in 42:18:24; Eliza Hamm, 29, of Manchester Center, Vt., was 110th in 44:37:34; and 37-year-old Tek Ung of Cranston, R.I., was the final of the 136 finishers, beating the cutoff by 21 minutes with a time of 47:39:06.

Paul Terranova, 45, of Austin, Texas, won the men’s race by nearly 2 1/2 hours in 25:02:21 while 36-year-old Alyson Kirk of Morrison, Colo., won the women’s race in 28:47:56.

Massanutten 100

The Massanutten Mountain Trails 100-miler has turned into an annual road trip for several Massachusetts ultrarunners, and they’ve been joined by the occasional fresh face. That was the case once again this year as a pack of runners from the Bay State traveled to Fort Valley, Va., for the 25th annual race on May 18-19.

Six local runners finished the race 103.7-mile race, and several of them finished together. Fairhaven resident Mark Gauthier, 50, was the top local finisher. He placed 59th overall in 32:23:40 in his Massanutten debut. Tess Harvey followed shortly thereafter as the 29-year-old Brighton resident earned her first 100-mile finish in 32:35:23, placing 62nd overall. Fairhaven resident Kevin Mullen followed 10 minutes later, placing 66th in 32:46:04 for his fifth Massanutten finish.

The final trio of local runners, 50-year-old John Correiro of Westport, 51-yeaar-old Giles Gregory of Nantucket and 52-year-old Brian Tjersland of Dartmouth, all finished side by side in 23:10:56. It was Correiro’s third time finishing the race and the first for both Gregory and Tjersland.

Eddie Pantoja, 33, of Avondale, Pa., took top honors among the men in 21:02:22, outdistancing runner-up Jason Lantz, 38, of Bethlehem, N.H., who finished in 21:51:09. Sheila Vibert, 37, of Arlington, Va., finished ninth overall and was the top woman finisher in 24:08:13. Ninety-six runners finished within the 35-hour time limit.

Manchester 2 Monadnock

Eighteen runners took on the fifth annual Manchester 2 Monadnock 55-miler on Saturday, May 18, and 16 of them successfully completed the 55-mile point-to-point race from Manchester, N.H., to Jaffrey, N.H., tackling more than 6,000 feet of vertical gain and a mixture of pavement, dirt roads and singletrack trails along the way.

Kevin Coughlin, 35, of Tolland, Conn., finished first overall in 10:06:58. He was joined on the men’s podium by 44-year-old Jason Downer of Rochester, N.H. (10:33:06) and 33-year-old Peter Ouellette of Enfield, Conn. (12:19:06). Alison Hillas, 30, of Princeton, N.J., was the fastest woman finisher in 12:22:36, followed by 44-year-old Maria Chevalier of Cumberland, R.I., in 13:10:47 and 35-year-old Colleen Smith of Nashua, N.H., in 14:03:24.

Six Massachusetts residents were among the finishers. Dartmouth resident Nicole Ponte, 20, was the fastest, finishing in 14:30:35. Others included Quincy’s Aliza Mon, 46, in 14:56:09; Boston’s Alison Fitch-Molony, 27, in 14:56:09; Plymouth’s Mark Evans, 52, in 15:32:58; Taunton’s Brendan Chambers, 41, in 17:59:46; and Taunton’s Eric Hudson, 27, in 18:32:00.

Mind the Ducks Ultra

At just 32 years old Bennjamin Griffin has built a racing resume longer than most runners will in their lifetime. By his count, the resident of Pittsfield, Mass., ran his 100th marathon or ultramarathon race when he took part in the ninth annual Mind the Ducks 12-hour ultramarathon on Saturday, May 11, at North Ponds Park in Webster, N.Y.

Griffin and 169 other runners took on a 1.01203-mile loop course on a paved bike path, circling it as many times as they could within the time limit. Griffin completed the loop 41 times for 41.49 miles.

Nathan Price, 41, of Scottsville, N.Y., won the race with 71 laps for 71.85 miles. Abby McCarthy, 39, of Rochester, N.Y., finished fourth overall and first in the women’s field with 64 laps for 64.77 miles.

Seven other New England residents joined Griffin in logging mileage at Mind the Ducks. Bill Odendahl, 54, of Trumbull, Conn., led the way with 60.72 miles, good for 10th-place overall. Kathryn Stoker, 51, of Norwalk, Conn., was 17th overall with 55.66 miles. Others were 45-yeaar-old Albert Lione of Shelton, Conn., with 45.54 miles; 42-year-old John Fegyveresi of Quechee, Vt., with 44.53 miles; 43-year-old Tonya Caisse of Milford, Mass., with 40.48 miles; 57-year-old Margaret Griffin of Middle Grove, Mass., with 27.32 miles; and 36-year-old Christine Regalla of West Newton, Mass., with 18.22 miles.

*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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