Contact: Nancy Hobbs, (719) 573-4133, American Trail Running Association trlrunner@aol.com

 

 

Contact: Nancy Hobbs, (719) 573-4133, American Trail Running Association trlrunner@aol.com

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE       

 

July 21, 2009

 

Sunday’s Cheyenne Cañon Mountain Race Attracts Top Athletes

Runners to Vie for Spots on the World Mountain Team

 

Colorado Springs, CO ---- With a tagline, “Once is not enough,” the 2009 Cheyenne Cañon Mountain Race presented by Walmart, is sure to be a challenging yet fun trail running event for novice to elite participants. Slated for Sunday, July 26, 2009, the event is open to all levels of competitors, but the promise of four Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team slots has runners from across the country converging on Colorado Springs this weekend.

    On the women’s side, Christine Lundy, 38, Sausalito, CA, already on the team – her fourth – after her win at the USA Mountain Championships in North Conway, NH, on June 28, will be racing Sunday. Joining her will be the next eight finishers from North Conway,  2008 team member Brandy Erholtz, 31, Bailey, CO, four-time team member Laura Haefeli, 41, Del Norte, CO, Kasie Enman, 29, Huntington, VT, Gina Lucrezi, 26, Colorado Springs, Megan Lund, 25, Basalt, CO, Abby Larson, 30, Salt Lake City, Amber Moran, 30, Arden, NC, and Trisha Steidl, 32, Shoreline, WA. Additionally, 2008 team member Megan Kimmel, 29, Silverton, CO, 2006 team member Nicole Hunt, 39, Deer Lodge, MT, 2007 Junior team member Maria Dalzot, 21, Morgantown, WV, two-time team member Lisa Goldsmith, 44, Nederland, and five-time team member Anita Ortiz, 45, Eagle, CO, are also entered.

    The top two women finishers will earn a berth on this year’s mountain team. Should Lundy finish first or second, the third place finisher does not receive an automatic spot on the team. The final two spots on the team – there are four team members on the World Team – would be decided in the coming weeks by the USATF Mountain Ultra Trail Running Council.

    On the men’s side the field is wide open. Expected to contend for the two automatic team spots are local runners Ryan Hafer, 23, Alex Nichols, 24, Daryn Parker, 28, and Daniel Castenada, 24. They will face competition from two-time team member Shiloh Mielke, 29, Weaverville, NC, 2006 Junior team member Andrew Benford, 21, Ravenswood, WV, Jason Delaney, 29, Golden (who bested Nichols at the July 5 Vail HillClimb), Aaron Saft, 31, Fletcher, NC, John Tribbia, 27, Boulder, Bill Fanselow, 42, Golden, and New Mexico runners Jesse Armijio, 26, Juan Ortega, 22, and Loren Wohletz, 24.

    “This is not only going to be a great race to run, it is also going to be a great spectator event. With a loop course, there are several times to see the runners on course. What is most exciting is that the entire women’s mountain team who will compete in Italy this fall will be in Colorado Springs,” said Nancy Hobbs, Executive Director of the American Trail Running Association.

            The course, designed by eight-time Mountain Team member Paul Low, starts at the Stratton Open Space Trailhead in North Cheyenne Cañon, connects with the Gold Camp Path, joins up with the Chutes, follows the east side of the reservoir, back up Gold Camp Path for the loop (men run three loops, women and junior men two loops), then back down to the finish. The race is limited to 200 participants. There are two separate race starts with the women running an 8 kilometer course at 7:00 a.m. and the men racing 12 kilometers at 8:30 a.m. (junior men – ages 19 and under – will run the 8 kilometer route). Runners and spectators should park at the Starsmore Discovery Center Parking Log.

This first-year event is presented by WalMart with additional local support from ERA Shields brokers Marzolf/Blessing, Champion Health/Dr. Jeffrey Matthews, Bristol Brewing, Colorado Running Company, and Criterium Bike Shop. National sponsors joining the effort include SportHill and Teva. Registration is available at www.imathlete.com, in person at Colorado Running Company, 833 N. Tejon Street, Colorado Springs, or through the mail by downloading an entry form at www.trailrunner.com. The entry fee is $35 from June 1 – July 25 and $40 on race day – if space available.

As mentioned previously, the event serves as a selection race for the Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team with the top two men and the top two women (must be current USATF members and USA citizens) earning spots on this year’s team which will compete in Campodolcino, Italy this September for Team USA. It is the final team selection race – the first being the USA Mountain Running Championships on June 28 in North Conway, NH where Joseph Gray, 25, Lakewood, WA, Zac Freudenberg, 31, St. Louis, MO, and Matt Byrne, 34, Scranton, PA were named to the team along with Lundy for the women. A prize purse of $1500 will be awarded (distributed between the top five men and top five women – must be current USATF members and USA citizens) and age group awards for the top finisher will be presented in 10 year increments. There will be random prize drawings for all participants and volunteers.

Every participant will receive a commemorative USA Mountain Running cowbell, post race refreshments, accurate results, and for those 21 and older – a beer certificate from Bristol Brewing.

Not only is the event a fundraiser for the American Trail Running Association, but also serves as a fundraiser for the Friends of North Cheyenne Cañon and Stratton Commons. Individuals may donate, as part of their registration, to any of these non-profit organizations.

For more information on the event visit www.trailrunner.com.

 

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