MassUltra Roundup: Umstead, Gorge Waterfalls, Trail Trashed, and Naked Prussian

Lance Doherty returned to the Umstead 100-miler for the second straight year, and for the second straight year the resident of Somerville, Mass., earned a spot on the podium in North Carolina. Meanwhile, in the Pacific Northwest, former Boston resident Joe McConaughy hammered a top-three finish at the Gorge Waterfalls 100K. Also in the West, Cambridge resident Richard Mountfield was victorious after 50 miles in Nevada. Those performances and more are included in this edition of the roundup.

Umstead 100

A year ago, Lance Doherty earned a place on the podium at the Umstead 100 when he finished third overall. His return to Umstead for the 27th annual event concluded with a familiar feeling on April 2-3 in Raleigh, N.C.

The 100-mile race takes place on a 12.5-mile loop course consisting of a wide, smooth, mostly crushed-gravel surface at William B. Umstead State Park that runners must complete eight times within the 30-hour time limit.

In 2021, Doherty completed the course in 16:41:42. This time, he hammered the loop harder and finished in a speedy 16:03:48, a 38-minute improvement. Doherty was the third overall finisher again, but the second-place male this time. Brian Sharbono, 39, of Port Orange, Fla., led the men in 15:57:28 while women’s champion Devon Yanko, 39, of Salida, Colo., doubled as the overall champion in a dominating 14:23:13.

Two more New England residents joined Doherty among the 129 finishers. Gregory Lowe, 58, of Ipswich, Mass., placed 26th overall in 21:25:31, and George Alexion, 62, of Waterboro, Maine, finished in 28:44:42.

An additional 100 runners finished the event’s 50-mile race. Connecticut’s Ian Hockley (33rd; 11:06:59) and Fred Murolo (78th; 14:27:05) and Massachusetts’ Alan Burwell (64th; 13:04:56) were the New England finishers.

Gorge Waterfalls

Joe McConaughy no longer makes his home in Boston, Mass. – the Seattle native has been back in Washington State for more than a year – but he still represented the region in fine fashion at the Gorge Waterfalls Ultras on April 2-3 in Cascade Locks, Ore. The event offers 100K and 50K ultramarathons, but it was last held in 2018. In the years since, fires and a pandemic forced the event to go on an extended hiatus. Under new leadership and with a revamped course, the event returned for 2022 and took runners on a tour of the trails along the Columbia River at Marine Park.

McConaughy, 30, was among the top performers in the 100K race. Of the 183 finishers within the 17-hour time limit, he finished third overall in 8:57:20 and was one of just three runners to complete the course in less than nine hours. David Laney, 33, of Portland, Ore., led all runners in 8:34:26, followed by 35-year-old Richard Lockwood of Seattle, Wash., in 8:51:39. Hannah Osowski, 30, of Colorado Springs, Colo., finished fifth overall and led the women’s field in 9:34:44. Ellie Pell, 30, of Ithaca, N.Y., highlighted the women’s performers from the Northeast, placing third in the field and 11th overall in 9:50:50. Only the top 12 runners finished in less than 10 hours.

Timothy Lock, 41, of Hope, Maine, also was among the finishers, placing 42nd overall in 11:41:56.

An additional 191 runners finished the 50K race within nine hours. Men’s and women’s winners were Ryan Miller, 30, of San Antonio, Texas, and Keely Henninger, 29, of Portland, Ore., in 3:50:17 and 4:19:36, respectively. Abby Schaible, 26, of Jefferson, Vt., was the top New England finisher, placing 65th overall in 6:01:07. Other runners from the region who finished the 50K were Connor McHugh, 27, of Old Saybrook, Conn., in 6:52:13; Jenn Hoadley, 43, of Scituate, Mass., in 7:09:28; and Matthew Hoadley, 43, of Scituate, Mass., in 7:53:01.

Trail Trashed Ultra

Following a seven-year hiatus from running ultras, Richard Mountfield returned to ultra distance racing when he took part in the 50-mile race at the seventh annual Trail Trashed Ultras on April 2-3 in Moapa Valley, Nev.

The event offered 100-mile, 100K, 50-mile and 50K distances. Mountfield, 53, of Cambridge, Mass., was the lone New England resident to take part in any distance, opting for the 50-miler. Racing on singletrack trails in the Muddy Mountains near Las Vegas, Mountfield completed the multi-loop course faster than his competitors and placed first overall in 10:56:17, a solid 54 minutes ahead of the runner-up. It was Mountfield’s first ultra since taking part in the New Jersey Ultra Festival in 2012, 2014 and 2015.

Naked Prussian

A year ago, the Naked Prussian 50-miler merged with the Naked Bavarian 40-miler to overcome pandemic-related postponements and still give runners the opportunity to compete. On Saturday, April 2, the Naked Prussian reverted to its solo event status for its sixth annual running along the trails of Blue Marsh Lake in Leesport, Pa.

The multi-loop, lollipop-style course took runners over a variety of terrain, from singletrack dirt to gravel roads and a little bit of pavement and the occasional root, rock, or mud puddle thrown in for good measure. Runners amassed around 5,000 feet of vertical gain by the time they finished.

Peter Christie, 51, of Needham, Mass., led the New England contingent by finishing 13th out of 67 in 9:18:56. Emanuel King, 24, of Mill Hall, Pa., topped the men’s field in 7:24:49 while Emily Nickoloff-Bybel, 31, of Philadelphia, Pa., led the women in 8:50:20. Other New England finishers were Jared Gell, 41, of Ridgefield, Conn. (11:27:05); Jennifer Hunt, 47, of Carver, Mass. (11:44:59); Virginie Skoczen, 51, of Fairfield, Conn. (11:52:27); and Tess Gannaway Rizza, 31, of Hopkinton, Mass. (11:54:57).

*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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s