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Mt. Washington Hall of Fame Ceremony on Friday, June 17

51st
Mount Washington Road Race

Mt. Washington Auto Road
June 18, 2011 ‰ÛÒ 9 a.m.
&
Second annual Mount
Washington Road Race
Hall of Fame inauguration
Friday, June 17 — 6 p.m.

 

·         Froude, Gallagher, Kihara to be honored at this year‰Ûªs
race

·         Ceremony highlights Auto Road‰Ûªs 150th
anniversary

 

April
26, 2011 — Pinkham Notch, N.H.

 

Derek Froude,
the first person to run up the Mt. Washington Auto Road in under
one hour, joins four-time Mt. Washington champions Mike
Gallagher
and Daniel Kihara this year as
the 2011 inductees to the Mount Washington Road
Race Hall of Fame
.  These three
extraordinary runners will be honored this summer in a ceremony
held at the base of Mt. Washington on Friday, June 17, the
evening before the 51st running of this all-uphill
race to the summit of the highest peak in the Northeast.

 

Sponsored by Northeast
Delta Dental
, the Mt. Washington Road Race annually pits
1000 runners against one of the most challenging obstacles in
road-racing anywhere in the world: the 7.6-mile Mt.
Washington Auto Road
, which rises at an average grade of
12 percent to the 6288-foot Mt. Washington summit. 
The race has attracted Olympic athletes, Boston marathon
champions, and the best mountain running specialists in the
world to compete in the White Mountains of New Hampshire along
with numerous other runners from across the United States and
from sixteen other countries. 

 

Founded last year on the
occasion of the 50th running of the storied race, the
Mt. Washington Road Race Hall of Fame recognizes athletes whose
exceptional accomplishments in the race have added greatly to
the history and stature of the event.  Inductees
are chosen by a vote of the Hall of Fame committee from a longer
list of nominees compiled by December 31 of the preceding year.  This year‰Ûªs Hall of Fame inductees will be
honored at a ceremony on Friday, June 17, the night before the
annual Mt. Washington Road Race.

 

The 2011 inductees and their
accomplishments:

 

Derek Froude
of New Zealand ran the marathon in the 1984 Olympic Games,
trained in Colorado and became increasingly interested in
mountain racing.  He came to the Mt.
Washington Road Race in 1990 with a plan to break the daunting
one-hour barrier here, and, after studying the course carefully,
succeeded in clocking a time of 59 minutes 17 seconds.  ‰ÛÏI thought I could do it,‰Û he said upon
finishing.  Froude returned to win again
in 1991, then made one more appearance here in 1992, this time
finishing second behind another Colorado-trained newcomer (Matt
Carpenter).  Derek Froude now lives in
Florida and will travel to Mt. Washington for the Hall of Fame
ceremony.

 

Mike Gallagher
remains best known as one of America‰Ûªs great Nordic skiers ‰ÛÒ he
skied in three Olympics ‰ÛÒ but he was also a formidable runner,
as he proved by becoming the first person to win the Mt.
Washington Road Race four times.  Moreover,
he won those in consecutive years (1968-1971); the only person
with more consecutive wins (five) is Bob Hodge. 
Gallagher ran a personal best of 1:06:13 here in 1968,
and in his final win, in 1971, he took a 51-second victory over
Boston Marathon champion and Olympic Trials marathoner Amby
Burfoot.  Since retiring from racing,
Mike Gallagher has kept busy with coaching and with inspiring
young skiers. He lives in Vermont and will drive over to the
White Mountains for the Friday night event.

 

Daniel Kihara
first ran Mt. Washington in 1996, when he took nearly a minute
off Froude‰Ûªs course record, making the ascent in 58:21. Training
both in his native Kenya and in the hills of Pennsylvania,
Kihara returned to Mt. Washington in 1999 to win a second time,
following with his third and fourth victories in 2000 and 2001.
His only loss was a sixth place finish in the weather-shortened
race in 2002.  His slowest time for the
full course was just six seconds over an hour (1:00:06), and he
is still the only runner in the history of the race with three
sub-one hour finishes.  Whether or not he
can attend the event in person remains to be ascertained.

 

This year‰Ûªs Mt. Washington
Road Race and Hall of Fame induction are part of the summer-long
celebration of the 150th anniversary of the opening
of the Mt. Washington Auto Road.  Completed
in 1861 and originally called the Mt. Washington Carriage Road,
the twisting, windswept road to the top of the Presidential
Range was one of the first man-made tourist attractions in New
England.  The Mt. Washington Road Race
was first held three times in the 1930s, then again in 1961 on
the Auto Road‰Ûªs centennial, in 1962, and continuously since
1966.

 

The Friday evening Hall of
Fame induction is part of the annual pre-race gathering for
stories, brief speeches, information and advice about running up
the mountain, and other tributes to the race.  The
ceremony will start at 6 p.m. in the large tent at the base of
the Auto Road, on Route 16 just north of Pinkham Notch.

 

The public is invited.

 

Regularly updated information
about the Mt. Washington Road Race Hall of Fame is available any
time on
Facebook (facebook.com/mwrrhof),
Twitter  (twitter.com/mwrrrecords)
and the Hall of Fame blog (mtwashingtonrecords.blogspot.com

).  For other information about the race,
visit www.mountwashingtonroadrace.com.

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