Record turnout, Western States contender highlight Truckee Running Festival
Race organizers Big Blue Adventure opened up the 2019 season last Sunday morning, bringing nearly 200 athletes and more than 200 girls from Girls on the Run and their running buddies to River View Sports Park for the annual Truckee Running Festival.
This year’s festival featured a half marathon race, a 10-kilometer race, and a 5-kilometer race, which benefitted Girls on the Run — Sierras. A children’s fun run capped off the day’s activities.
“We’re extremely proud to continue our relationship with Girls on the Run-Sierras at the Truckee Running Festival,” said Director of Operations Bryan Rickards. “We had an amazing race day with a record number of participants and great weather.”
This year’s race attracted many of the Truckee-Tahoe area’s top runners, while also serving as a modest warm up ahead of the upcoming Western States Endurance Run for Australian ultrarunner Lucy Bartholomew.
“It’s such an awesome little community and everyone runs with the right spirit out here,” said Bartholomew. “It’s really cool to run a low-key race before a big race like Western States. It just takes the pressure off and it’s about having fun.”
Bartholomew, who finished in third place at last year’s Western States with a time of 18 hours, 59 minutes, 45 seconds, breezed through the Waddle Ranch Half Marathon at the Truckee Running Festival, finishing with a time of 1:37.28 for first place in the women’s division and third overall.
“I absolutely loved the course,” she said. “It was really nice to hop onto the trails, a bit of climbing, which suits me better — I definitely felt the altitude up here, which is crazy.”
The 23-year-old Australian has been in the U.S. for the past week in order to acclimate herself to the change in time zones, altitude, and hot temperatures at the race finish in Auburn. She decided to compete in the Waddle Ranch Half Marathon the morning of the race.
“I thought I’d help Salomon with this event, and last minute I decided I’d run the event,” said Bartholomew. “I signed up this morning.”
Truckee’s Raeleigh Harris claimed second place in the women’s division, finishing with a time of 1:42:42. Evelyn Cordner, of San Francisco, was the third fastest woman on the day, finishing with a time of 1:47:52.
On the men’s side, William Lamb, of San Francisco, captured first place with a time of 1:31:00. Carson City’s Jason Kerver was next with a time of 1:32.20. Tahoe City’s Dan Stoll was the fastest local, finishing in third place with a time of 1:39:40. Truckee’s Jack Macy was fifth with a time of 1:41:23.
Truckee’s Dan Rose, 72, was the oldest competitor in the field, and finished the course with a time of 3:13:22.
In the 10-kilometer race, Tyler Munger, of Santa Cruz, took first place with a time of 41:18. John Painting, of Fair Oaks, was next with a time of 42:05. Truckee’s Robert McClendon was third with a time of 43:50. Truckee’s Steve Buelna was fifth with a time of 46:04. At age 58, Truckee’s Derek Coons competed in his first ever race, and finished eighth overall with a time of 51:13. Coons credited the Donner Party Mountain Runners for getting him out on the trails.
On the women’s side, Khara Cormia, of Grass Valley, took first place with a time of 51:39. Corrina Munger, of Nevada City, finished second with a time of 52:31. Kelsey McFaul, of Davis, was third with a time of 55:11. Homewood’s Korie Kromydas was the top local finisher, crossing the line with a time of 55:41 for fourth place.
The 5-kilometer distance benefited Girls on the Run — Sierras, and attracted 50 competitors.
Tahoe City’s Noosa Higgins, 13, was the top finisher, regardless of gender, conquering the course in 22:33 to claim the women’s top place.
Unique Hartke, of Roseville, was second in the women’s division with a time of 23:18, and Truckee’s Melissa Curley was third with a time of 23:29.
On the men’s side, Stephen Berei, of South Lake Tahoe, was first with a time of 23:08. At 10 years old, Truckee’s Caiden Reitter took second place, also crossing the finish line with a chip time of 23:08. Andrew Suberlak, of Poway, was third with a time of 27:13.
Big Blue Adventure will next host the Squaw Valley Half Marathon and Run to Squaw 8 Miler this Sunday.
The half marathon starts and ends at The Village at Squaw Valley and follows the paved trail along the Truckee River toward Tahoe City.
The Run to Squaw race starts at Commons Beach in Tahoe City and finishes at The Village at Squaw Valley.
For those wishing to race with one of the top ultrarunners in the world, Bartholomew said she plans on competing again at this Sunday’s event.
“I’ll keep them honest,” joked Bartholomew about running with Truckee-Tahoe locals.
For full results or to register for upcoming races, visit TahoeTrailRunning.com.
Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.