Wyatt Wins World Mtn. Championships, US Men Cop Bronze

SIERRE CRANS-MONTANA, Switzerland – (September 14, 2008) – At
the 24th World Mountain Running Trophy on Sunday, Andrea Mayr of
Austria and Jonathan Wyatt of New Zealand won world titles in 43 minutes,
58 seconds and 55:04, while Norway and Italy earned the women’s and men’s team
titles, respectively. For the U.S., the men’s team led by Rickey Gates of
Boulder, Colo. took home its first bronze medal, while 17-year-old Alex
of San Clemente, Calif. was the bronze medalist in the Junior girls

Fog, some drizzle, temperatures in the 40s and challenging
uphill courses were the order of the day. The Senior women ran over an 8.3K (5.1 mile) course with 2,420 feet of climb. The Teva U.S. team (top three score) took 8th with 82 points in the field of 97 women representing 32 countries. Brandy Erholtz was the top U.S. finisher taking 11th in 47:41. Megan Kimmel was next placing 33rd in 50:04, followed by Rachael Cueller, 38th in 50:38, and Laura Haefeli, 44th in 51:32. Austria’s Andrea Mayr beat Italy’s Renate Rungger by one minute, 43:58 to 44:58. Team Norway edged the hosts, Switzerland, 24 points to 25.

The Senior men’s 12K race with 3,430 feet of climb was the
finale (11:15am) with 161 runners from 37 countries toeing the line with four
runners scoring. The Teva U.S. team had its best performance yet scoring a
bronze medal. The team was lead by Rickey Gates who finished 12th in 57:18
followed closely by Joe Gray in 16th (57:54) and Eric Blake 23rd
(58:23). The final scoring member was veteran Simon Gutierrez in 25th
(58:35). Also running excellent races were Matt Byrne in 34th (59:12) and
Zac Freudenberg in 36th (59:15); Team USA had the fastest sixth man among
all of the countries. The world champion again – for the sixth time – was
Jonathan Wyatt of New Zealand in 55:04 with Martin Toroitich of Uganda
runner-up, 55:16. The medalist teams were Italy 43 points, Switzerland 59 points
and the USA with 76 points.

The Junior races, with simultaneous starts, kicked off the
World champs. The Junior boys (in Venthone) and the Junior girls (in Montana
village) began their respective races at 10:30am. The girls would cover 4.2K
(2.6 miles) with 1,100 feet of climb and the boys would cover 8.3K (5.1 miles),
the same course as the Senior women. The U.S. girls (two runners score) took
10th with Alex Dunne leading the way with a bronze medal finish in 23:34 and
Yasmine White taking 38th in 27:53 in the field of 47 runners
representing 19 countries. Laura Park won the Junior girls race in 22:35
to lead England to the team title with 8 points.

In the Junior boys race, three runners scored in the field of
75 runners representing 25 countries. Tim Smith was the top U.S. finisher
taking 5th place in 43:02 and was closely followed by Levi Grandt who
placed 13th in 44:01. Jonny Stevens took 31st in 45:40, while Paul
was 50th in 47:32. The team took 4th with 49 points. Turkey was the
gold medal team with 13 points, while the race champion was Sindre Buraas
of Norway in 42:13.

24th World Mountain Running

Sierre Crans-Montana, SUI, Sunday, September 14, 2008

MEN – 12K
1) Jonathan Wyatt (NZL), 55:04
2) Martin
Toroitich (UGA), 55:16
3) Ahmet Arslan (TUR), 55:27
4) Bernard DeMatteis
(ITA), 55:49
5) Raymond Fontaine (FRA), 55:53
Top U.S.
Rickey Gates (CO), 57:18
16) Joe Gray (WA), 57:54
23) Eric Blake (CT),
25) Simon Gutierrez (CO), 58:35
34) Matt Byrne (PA), 59:12
Zac Freudenberg (MO), 59:15

1) Italy, 43 points
2) Switzerland, 59
3) USA,
27 teams (top four score)

WOMEN – 8.3K
1) Andrea Mayr (AUT), 43:58
2) Renate
Rungger (ITA), 44:58
3) Elisa Desco (ITA), 45:29
4) Kirsten Otterbu (NOR),
5) Martina Str퀨͌_hl (SUI), 45:44
Top U.S.
11) Brandy Erholtz
(CO), 47:41
33) Megan Kimmel (CO), 50:04
38) Rachael Cuellar (NM),
44) Laura Haefeli (CO), 51:32

1) Norway, 24 points
2) Switzerland, 25
Italy, 33
8) USA, 82
21 teams (top three score)

Complete race results at: http://services.datasport.com/2008/lauf/sierremontana/

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