Pinedale Half-Marathon 2015
by Terry Allen
September 30, 2015
From as near as the Sublette Center Retirement Home to as far away as Amsterdam, Netherlands, runners, walkers and rollers tensed at the starting line waiting for the crack of the pistol to release them onto the race course.
They charged uphill through autumnís golden leaves that drifted onto the trail. The foliage soon gave way to the faded green sage brush that lines Fremont Lake.
There on the flat south end of the lake, the sun beat down on eventual menís half marathon winner Jerrid Washburn of Green River. "This is by far our favorite race. If you are going to do a race, you should come up and do this one," he said. "Thatís why we keep coming back and making it a family event."
Only one minute behind ran a determined Kris Holmes of Daniel who finished with a silver medal.
Abigail Bever of Rock Springs, celebrated her 25th birthday as the winner of the womenís half marathon. "My family came out to run with me. I could not have asked for a better gift," she said. What did it take for Abigail to become a winning runner? "When I used to run in college, I always felt like I had to be serious at every race," she said. "Since then, I have chosen to approach races with the mindset of enjoying the atmosphere and fellow competitors. I have done my best running since I took this approach and I encourage other runners to do the same."
The several watering stations lining the course were staffed with volunteers dressed like the Pink Ladies in a Grease movie. Sweating runners and pink staff coordinated their movements like relay runners to hand off the dixie cups without dropping them.
Local running legend, Ken Konicek felt challenged by the half marathon. "It was hard," he said. "I didnít punch it too hard today. Iím doing the 10K also and Iím getting ready for the New York marathon in three weeks."
Surprise last minute entrants, Tessa and Mark Eerenberg of Amsterdam, Netherlands just happened to see the race posted online the day before the race. They looked at last years results and thought something was funny about a 10K with times of 45 minutes. "We figured it out in the first 5K, it was all uphill," said Tessa. "This is a short race for us, but with the hills and altitude, we are happy it wasnít longer."
Denise Tegler felt she went a little slower than she was hoping for, but still finished the womenís half marathon with a third place win. "Iím glad I did it," she said. "My result is encouraging, and I really love the camaraderie between runners. I love this community."
Ava Davis, age 97 of Big Piney, was the oldest entrant we found and she rolled her wheel chair in the one mile race. "I didnít do anything special to prepare for the race or to live this long," she said. "I eat bacon and everything."
Little three-month old Sakara Verska might have been the youngest entrant and felt it was so easy she slept her way through most of the race.
Then there is Jim Diego who is on a personal quest to run 50 half marathons in 50 states in one year. So far he has run in thirty-seven of them. He also sang the national anthem to open the race. Jim was observed along the course...partying and waving and shaking hands, so it is no surprise he finished sixty-three out of eighty-nine.
Finally, a few words from our race organizer, Nora Farrand:
"For the past 12 years, the Pinedale Half Marathon has provided a fun and healthy opportunity for residents and visitors alike to enjoy what is often one of the last nice days of the summer (the race takes place each year on the fourth Saturday of September). Participants choose to run or walk any of the three courses Ė a half marathon (13.1 miles), 10K (6.2 miles), or 1 mile. The event attracts serious runners as well as families looking for some exercise and senior citizens glad to be taking part in a truly community event and concludes with a free community BBQ.
The PHM Committee relies on a cadre of volunteers and local sponsors and contributors to put on such a top notch event. Jonah Energy (PHM's premier sponsor), the Pinedale Lions Club, Sue Eversull, Tim Ruland of PFAC, Mindi Crabb (our announcer), the local banks (WFB, 1st Bank, BOSC) and the Baymont Inn are just a few of the sponsors and contributors to our event. The list of 50 plus volunteers who make up the PHM team, do everything from setting up the course, and then breaking down the course, stuffing bags, manning registration and bag pickup, bicycle patrolling the course, passing out water, course guidance, awarding medals at the finish line, and cleaning up at the end of the event, is too long to list all their names individually, but without their willingness to come out and help year after year, there would be no Pinedale Half Marathon event."
Results can be found at: http://www.pinedalehalfmarathon.com/registration.html
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