Colorado Host to Final World Mtn. Qualifier (VT’s Enman 4th)

Temperatures Make for Fast Times at Cheyenne
Ca̱on Mountain Race

Former Mountain Running Team Members Earn Spots on this
year‰Ûªs World Team


Colorado Springs, CO —-
Late afternoon thunderstorms are
typical in Colorado Springs, but overcast skies and drizzle in the morning are
rare ‰ÛÒ especially in July. This morning was an exception with intermittent rain
showers and cool temperatures greeting runners at 7:00 a.m. for the women‰Ûªs
start of the Cheyenne
Ca̱on Mountain Race (Sunday, July
26), an 8 kilometer up/down loop course which would determine two of the four
members of this year‰Ûªs Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team. It was still cool for
the men‰Ûªs race at 8:30 a.m. for the 12 kilometer course with another two team
spots up for grabs.

The course, designed by eight-time Mountain Team member Paul Low, started at the Stratton Open
Space Trailhead in North Cheyenne
Ca̱on, connected with the Gold Camp Path, joined the Chutes
and followed the east side of the reservoir back up Gold Camp Path for the first
loop (women and junior men ran two loops, while open men ran three loops for
approximately 12 km), then back down to the finish.

‰ÛÏA few weeks before the race some of the women contending for a spot on
the team figured the winning time would be about 41 minutes (for the women).
Today when the first woman was climbing the final lollipop loop toward the
finish she was set to go under 40 minutes. The cool temperatures not only helped
set a fast pace, but the moisture helped pack down the dirt and scree to make
for a quicker running surface,‰Û said Nancy Hobbs, Executive Director of the
American Trail Running Association.

Laura Haefeli, 41, Del Norte,
CO, led the group on a blistering pace from the start around the first lollipop
loop. But at the top of the first climb it was flatlander Kasie Enman, 29, Huntington, VT, ahead
of a group of Coloradoans to the high point of the course at just under 7,000
feet. The group in the chase were included eventual winner Megan Kimmel, 29, Silverton, Haefeli,
Megan Lund, 24, Basalt, Brandy Erholtz, 31, Bailey, and Gina Lucrezi, 26, Colorado Springs.
Enman excelled on the downhill and picked up some distance on the group, yet was
caught by Kimmel and Lund on the second loop.

Kimmel took the opportunity
to surge ahead and bested Lund by just five seconds to take the victory in
39:23. On the final lollipop loop, Haefeli charged past Enman to finish in third
position in 29:52 with Enman clocking 40:02. Rounding out the top five was
Erholtz in 40:19.

Kimmel‰Ûªs win earned her a
spot on her second consecutive Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team and will compete
along with first-time team member Lund in Campodolcino, Italy, on Sunday,
September 6 at the World Mountain Running Championships. The pair will join Christine Lundy, 38, Sausalito, CA, who
won the USA Mountain Running Championships on June 28 in North Conway, NH, to
make her fourth mountain team. The final member of the squad will be selected
from the top finishers in today‰Ûªs event.

On the men‰Ûªs side local
runner Ryan Hafer, 23, set a strong
pace on the first kilometer while Tim
27, Gunnison, CO, sat comfortably in the chase pack and worked his way
up to the lead with University of Richmond‰Ûªs Andrew Benford, 21, Ravenswood, WV,
going with him. ‰ÛÏI felt great on the uphills,‰Û said
Benford, ‰ÛÏThen Tim would pull away on the downhills. He was more aggressive on
the downhills, especially on the last lap. I knew I was on the team when we
topped out the last climb. Dan Petty (UR teammate) was there, along with
my brother, telling me exactly where everyone was. The last downhill was sweet.
I knew I was running my way onto the U.S. Team. It’s a great feeling.‰Û

crossed the line in 47:13 to make his third U.S team (‰Ûª04, ‰Ûª05, ‰Ûª09) while
Benford makes his second U.S Team. Benford‰Ûªs performance places him in the
history books as the first U.S. runner to make a junior team (2006) and a senior
team (2009).  Albuquerque‰Ûªs Kristopher Houghton, 28, finished third
in 48:21 with local runner Alex
, 24, in fourth with a time of 48:51, and 2007 mountain team member
Payton Batliner, 25, Boulder, in
fifth timed in 49:09.

Parr and
Benford will join the top three runners from the USA Mountain Running
Joseph Gray,
25, Lakewood, WA, Zac Freudenberg,
31, St. Louis, MO, and Matt Byrne,
34, Scranton, PA, on the mountain team. 
The final member of the six-member squad will be announced on August

    With a tagline, ‰ÛÏOnce is not
enough,‰Û the 2009 Cheyenne
Ca̱on Mountain Race presented by Walmart, was a first year
event. Additional local support from ERA
Shields brokers Marzolf/Blessing
, Champion Health/Dr. Jeffrey Matthews,
Bristol Brewing, Colorado Running Company, and Criterium Bike Shop. National sponsors
joining the effort include SportHill
and Teva.

There were 36 women
finishers ranging in age from 18-64 and 46 men finishers ages 12 through 62.
 Every participant received a
commemorative USA Mountain Running cowbell, a Teva music CD, post race
refreshments, accurate results, and for those 21 and older ‰ÛÒ a beer certificate
from Bristol

Top Finishers

1 Tim Parr ,  47:13 $250                        
1. Megan Kimmel, 39:23, $250

2 Andrew Benford , 47:48,
2. Megan Lund, 39:28, $200

3 Kristopher Houghton,
48:21, $150                   
3. Laura Haefeli, 39:52, $150

4 Alex Nichols, 48:51,
4. Kasie Enman, 40:02, $100

5 Payton Batlinger, 49:09,
5. Brandy Erholtz, 40:19, $50


Junior Men:
Paul Petersen, Broomfield, 17, 39:57

Junior Women:
Jessie Watkins, 19, Colorado Springs, 49:34



Not only is the event a fundraiser for the American Trail
Running Association, but also served as a fundraiser for the Friends of North
Ca̱on and Stratton Commons. Individuals may donate, as part
of their registration, to any of these non-profit organizations. For additional
information visit

For information on the U.S.
Mountain Running Program and the World Mountain Running Association visit the
websites listed below:


USA Mountain Running

World Mountain Running

USA Track & Field                                             

American Trail Running




SportHill Clothing                                                

KINeSYS, Inc.                                                   

CW-X Conditioning Wear                                    

Costa Del Mar                                                    


Fleet Feet

Wicked Fast Sports





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