With a rising sun, plush evergreen trees and a gorgeous mountain vista, runners took off from Evergreen, CO for the 34th Annual Evergreen Town Race. The event hosted two race distances: a 5K and 10K. The 10K served, for the second year in a row, as the USATF Colorado 10K Championship. Both races wind down Upper Bear Creek on a blazing fast downhill course, finishing up near Evergreen Lake. As one of the most scenic and fastest races in Colorado, the scene was set for an amazing race.
The 10K Championship race attracted Colorado’s top runners with a hefty share of a $2,500 prize purse. Prize money was awarded to the top 5 overall eligible male and female 10K finishers as well as the first place male and female eligible masters finishers. Furthermore, an additional monetary prize would be awarded should anyone break the course record. And break it they did…
Robert Cheseret of Colorado Springs won in a new course record of 29:44. Patrick Rizzo came in seconds later with a time of 29:48. Rounding out the top three was Joshua Glaab in 29:59. Also receiving prize money were fourth and fifth place finishers Scott Fauble and Kenneth Foster who finished in 30:06 and 30:12, respectively. Grabbing the first place masters win was Fort Collins’ Steve Folkerts in a time of 32:23.
Breaking the course record in the women’s championship race was Brianne Nelson. Nelson smashed the old course record by over a minute, crossing the line in 33:52. Coming in second was Kristen Fryburg-Zaitz in 33:59, while Melissa Todd of Timnath grabbed third in 34:42. Finishing fourth and fifth were Wendy Thomas in 34:57 and newly-crowned 2012 US Mountain Running Team Member Melody Fairchild in 35:21. Well-known Colorado runner Colleen De Reuck took home the masters title in 36:47.
In the 5K race, Charles Hillig ran away from the field for the win in 14:47. 16-year old Connor Lockwood and 18-year old Alex Nelson tied for second in 16:00.
In the women’s 5K race, 15-year old Tabor Scholl took the win in 17:56 (11-year old brother Tyler finished up in seventh in 16:26). Second place finisher Ruth Waller crossed the line in 18:34, with third place finisher Katy East hot on her heels, finishing up in 18:36.
The event not only benefited the Alpine Rescue Team, but it also held a kid’s fundraising run to raise money for local runner Ryan Haebe who is fighting in the hospital after a critical fall last month.