Brianne Nelson Wins the Horsetooth Half Marathon


History was made Sunday morning, and it had nothing to do with the massive amount of snow that fell across Colorado.  Golden’s Brianne Nelson won the Horsetooth Half Marathon outright in 1:16:44, just four seconds ahead of first place male and second place overall finisher Stephen Pretak.

The event – which dates back to 1973 – had been emailing its registrants days ahead of the race, continually updating them on weather forecasts and contingency plans.  With a hefty storm hovering over the state throughout the weekend, it’s quite a surprise that the race was executed as planned – a homage to the new race directors, Nick Clark and Pete Stevenson of Gnar Runners.

With a cash prize on the line for the top finishers, as well as the Monster Mountain Premium ($100 to the first male and female runners to reach the top of Monster Mountain, the infamous hill at mile 1.8 of the half marathon course), the event has always attracted some of Colorado’s best.

As previously mentioned, 31-year old Stephen Pretak grabbed the men’s win in 1:16:48.  Coming in second was 26-year old Mike Matuszak in 1:17:35, with 26-year old James Vance rounding out the top three in 1:18:10.

In the women’s race, Nelson’s 1:16:44 was good for the win, as well as the Monster Mountain Premium.  Heather Utrata came in second in 1:26:16, and 32-year old Ruth Waller-Liddle crossed the line in third in 1:27:41.

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