Prize money was on the line at the Run Rabbit Run 100-miler last weekend, and a former Massachusetts resident brought home the win in Steamboat Springs, Colo., leading the way for a few additional New Englanders who completed the challenging mountain race. Northwest of Colorado, another New Englander earned a big 100-mile finish as Woburn’s Samantha LeBlanc delivered a gritty performance at the IMTUF 100 in Idaho. Additionally, Cambridge, Mass., resident Jason Smith turned in a top-five finish at the Tahoe 100K, and New Englanders also finished the SRT Run/Hike in New York and the Boulder Field 100K in Pennsylvania. We have those five races covered in Part I of this week’s roundup. Coming tomorrow, Part II will showcase the non-Massachusetts New England races: the Kilkenny Ridge 50-miler, 24 Hours of Northeast Kingdom, Pisgah Mountain 50K and Macedonia 50K.
Run Rabbit Run 100
A pair of former Massachusetts residents earned top-five finishes in the high-profile Hare Division of the 13th annual Run Rabbit Run 100-miler on Sept. 13-14 in Steamboat Springs, Colo., and one of them brought home the victory and $15,000 prize that came with it.
Kyle Pietari, 33, a former Boston resident while attending Harvard Law, now calls Edgewater, Colo., home and he raced like he felt right at home in the mountains during the race. The four-time Western States 100 top-10 finisher pulled away late from 35-year-old Him Rebenack of Littleton, Colo., and earned the victory in 19:14:09. Rebenack followed six minutes later in second place. Additionally, former Woburn, Mass., resident Scott Traer also had a big performance. The 38-year-old Traer now lives in Lyons, Colo., and he finished fifth overall in the Hare Division in 20:02:16. In the women’s race, 37-year-old Michele Yates of Confer, Colo., earned the victory and prize money haul for her 22:10:59 finish. Forty runners finished the Hare Division race within the 30-hour time limit.
Run Rabbit Run also featured a Tortoise Division that allowed runners 36 hours to finish the course. Michael Martinez, 33, of Colorado Springs, Colo., led the field of 178 finishers of that division, winning in 22:59:21. Amber Pougiales, 28, of Denver, Colo., was the women’s winner in 26:08:00. Five New England residents were among the Tortoise Division finishers. Michael Barrett, 48, of Arlington, Mass., finished 77th in 31:46:12; Fernando Salcido, 47, of Somerville, Mass., was 96th in 33:09:10; 60-year-old Rob Flowers of Darien, Conn., placed 106th in 33:26:35; 44-year-old Joshua White of Bethel, Vt., was 130th in 34:20:49; and 28-year-old Christopher Karter of Plainville, Mass., finished 166th in 35:31:29.
A 50-mile race was also offered, and two New England residents completed that course and its 9,000 feet of vertical gain. Al Catalano, 66, of Newbury, Mass., finished in 13:53:31, and 71-year-old Joe Hayes of Portsmouth, N.H., finished in 16:58:00.
Samantha LeBlanc made her 100-mile debut nearly a year ago on a challenging mountain course in Virginia at the aptly named Grindstone. Her second pursuit of the distance was a race with an equally appropriate moniker: the Idaho Mountain Trail Ultra Festival 100-miler, or IMTUF.
LeBlanc took on the eighth annual race on Sept. 14-15, racing on the loop course that started and finished in McCall, Idaho, covering triple-digit mileage, amassing 22,000 feet of vertical gain and crossing eight high alpine mountain passes along the way.
Of the 170 runners who started the race, 119 finished within the 36-hour time limit. LeBlanc was among them. She was the 24th overall finisher and fourth-place woman in 27:45:46. Her performance was the sixth-fastest by a woman on the course, and she missed finishing on the podium by just 12 minutes. Rachel Entrekin, 28, of Seattle, Wash., finished seventh overall and was the first-place female 24:04:05, breaking the previous course record by more than 2 1/2 hours, followed an hour later by 31-year-old Christi Richards of Missoula, Mont., whose time of 25:07:44 also broke the previous course record. Ryan Kaiser, 40, of Bend, Ore., was the first-place male and overall winner in 22:08:22.
Two more New England residents joined LeBlanc as finishers. Stephen Anthony, 38, of Rumford, R.I., placed 70th overall in 32:39:15, and 59-year-old Garry Harrington of Swanzey, N.H., placed 85th overall in 33:36:16.
The sixth annual SRT Ultras on the Shawangunk Ridge Trail took place Saturday, Sept. 14, in Rosendale, N.Y. Runners had options to complete the entire 70-mile trail, the final 50 miles or the final 30 miles of the trail, battling a mixture of technical trails, challenging climbs, well-groomed dirt, and rocky and rooty sections, all while carrying all of their own supplies.
Thirteen runners finished the 70-mile point-to-point race from High Point State Park in New Jersey to Rosendale, N.Y., including one New England resident. Justin Kousky, 39, of Westport, Conn., finished second overall in 17:00:21. Another eight runners finished the 50-mile race, including runner-up Jason LaPadula, 28, of New Haven, Conn., who finished in 12:38:38.
The 30-mile race had the largest field with 38 finishers within 13 hours. That included four New England residents. Peydon Wright, 26, of Cabot, Vt., was the third-place female and 14th overall finisher in 7:59:13. Additionally, 50-year-old Daniel Goulart of New Bedford, Mass., finished 19th in 8:11:39; 57-year-old Julie Huber of Newton, Mass., finished 20th in 8:17:22; and 36-year-old Ian Kenney of Harvard, Mass., finished 23rd in 8:39:04.
Boulder Field 100K
The fourth annual Boulder Field 100K took place Saturday, Sept. 14, at Hickory Run State Park in Jim Thorpe, Pa. The two-loop course takes its name from the massive boulder field that runners must cross on each loop, gingerly navigating the rock field twice in addition to amassing 8,000 feet of vertical gain during the course of the race. Matthew Koral, 28, of Boston, Mass., was up to the challenge, placing 12th overall in 13:15:31. Kevin Scott, 35, of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., completed the race first in 10:32:19, holding off 27-year-old Sam Wallis of Philadelphia, Pa., for the win by three minutes.
The event also included a one-loop 50K race. No New England residents raced at that distance.
While the Tahoe 200 is still under way, the endurance festival’s 100K race has wrapped up. The second edition of the Tahoe 100K took place Saturday, Sept. 14, taking runners on a point-to-point course from the Spooner Trailhead to the Sierra-at-Tahoe Ski Resort in Lake Tahoe, Calif. Runners had 18 hours to finish the race, which took place almost entirely on singletrack trails and included extensive climbing. Ultimately, 51 runners finished the race within the time limit, including two from New England. Jason Smith, 29, of Cambridge, Mass., earned a fifth-place finish in 13:31:20, marking the latest strong performance from Smith this year. He won the Pineland Farms 50-miler in May, as well as the Wapack and Back 50-miler, and most recently finished 11th at the Quebec Mega Trail 110K in Beaupre, Quebec, in June. Alan Talhelm, 37, of Sacramento, Calif., was the men’s winner in 11:15:41.
In the women’s race, 39-year-old Darcy Lucas of Glastonbury, Conn., finished second in 14:01:18, less than two minutes off the win. First place went to 32-year-old Valerie Webb of Las Cruces, N.M., in 13:59:49.
*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.