August 7, 2005
Blake Earns Spot on Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team at Cranmore Hill Climb
NORTH CONWAY, NH - The third time was a charm for Eric Blake. After a seventh place finish at the Vail 10Km Trail Championships on June 4 and a second place finish at the Northfield Mountain race on June 25, Eric Blake, 26, of Plattsburgh, NY, won the 18th Annual Cranmore Hill Climb in a time of 1:03:46. The win secured Blake an automatic berth on the Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team which will head to Wellington New Zealand in September to represent the United States in the World Mountain Running Trophy Race.
Blake outlasted runner-up Paul Low, 31, of Amherst, MA and third place finisher Kevin Tilton, 23, of Conway, NH who finished in 1:06:05 and 1:07:31, respectively. All three runners came through the first lap of the 4.4Km grass and single track course in under 22 minutes. Each lap of the course featured a climb of 1107 feet in 2 kilometers, including a 1/2 Km section that reached grades of 20 percent or more.
Blake will join Timothy Parr, 23, Gunnison, CO, Simon Gutierrez, 39, Alamosa, CO, Ryan Pauling, 29, Rochester, NY, Laura Haefeli, 37, Del Norte, CO, Chris Lundy, 34, Sausalito, CA and Anita Ortiz, 41, Eagle, CO on the 10-member open squad of six men and four women (junior squad includes three junior men and two junior women) who will compete in New Zealand on September 25.
Tilton was followed by fellow Central Mass Strider teammates Ben Nephew in 1:13:20 and Peter Maksimow who finished fifth in a time of 1:13:43. Nephew lived up to his reputation as aggressive descender as he moved into fourth place on the final descent including a finish that found him barely able to hold his balance in the last 100 meters. "I got my feet stuck in the washed out ditch on the trail near the end and it was all I could do to keep from breaking my leg," remarked Nephew after the race.
Local 19-year-old runner David Hunt of Fryeburg, ME, who could have run in the two-lap junior race, chose to continue and run a third lap, finishing seventh overall in a time of 1:14:01. He was also the top junior men's finisher. White Mountain Miler Hunt, who has had a very successful summer finishing in the top three in many local races, was pleased with his finish. "I felt kind of good after the second lap so I figured I may as well keep going," Hunt said afterwards.
The first master's finisher in the men's race was David Audet of Concord, NH. The first senior male was Len Hall of Enfield, NH.
In the two lap women's race, Julie Bryan, 36 of Jackson Hole, WY came across the line in 51:29 for the win, followed by Central Mass Strider Kelli Lusk, 35, Amherst, MA in 53:03 and Kristin Hall of Arlington, MA in 59:58. Lusk was able to close in on Bryan on the second ascent but was unable to catch her on the downhill.
They were followed by local runners Dawn Heinrich of Wolfeboro, NH and White Mountain Miler Mary Bates of Intervale. Heinrich finished in a time of 1:02:14 and Bates came in at 1:04:28. Heinrich was the first female master's finisher. The first senior women's finisher was Ginny Howe of North Conway.
Low, Tilton, Maksimow, Nephew, Bryan, and Lusk are all hoping to secure at-large spots on the mountain running team. The team will be finalized in the coming week.
In a fitting tribute to the benefactor of the race, 12-year-old Emily Leich of North Conway ran in the women's junior race, running the one lap junior women's course in an impressive time of 44:11. Leich was joined by her mother Martha Leich who ran in the women's open race. Emily's grandmother and Martha's mother was Gretchen B. Hatch, for whom the White Mountain Miler's Gretchen B. Hatch scholarship fund is named. The Cranmore race is a benefit for the scholarship fund, which has given out over $38,000 since its inception. The fund provides college scholarships to local high school students who are involved in the sport of running.
In addition to being a Teva U.S. Mountain Team qualifier, Cranmore was also part of three other race series including the USATF New England Mountain Running Circuit of six races, The Trail Runner Magazine Trophy Series of more than 100 races, and the Grand Tree Series consisting of more than 20 trail races in New England.
Over $1100 in gift certificates and prizes were awarded at the event provided by Eastern Mountain Sports, Teva, Trail Runner Magazine, Zeb's Village Store, and No More Stinky Feet Shoe Spray. Race sponsors included the White Mountain Milers, Cranmore Mountain Resort, Teva, Eastern Mountain Sports, Hannaford, No More Stinky Feet Shoe Spray, Shaw's, Trail Runner Magazine, Wal-Mart and Zeb's Village Store.
The race had 92 finishers including participants from 11 states and Canada with the top finishers listed below.
Top Men: 1 ERIC BLAKE, 1:03:46 Plattsburgh NY 2 PAUL LOW, 1:06:05 Amherst, MA 3 KEVIN TILTON, 1:07:31 Conway, NH 4 BEN NEPHEW, 1:13:20 Foxboro, MA 5 PETER MAKSIMOW, 1:13:43:00 Springfield, MA 6 RYAN PAULING 1:13:46 Rochester, NY 7 DAVID HUNT 1:14:01 Fryeburg, ME 8 MARTINE LADOUCEUR 1:18:39 Magog, QUEBEC, CANADA 9 TIM LIVINGSTON 1:20:49 Conway, NH 10 DAVID AUDET 1:27:34 Concord, NH
Top Women: 1 JULIE BRYAN 51:29 JACKSON HOLE, WY 2 KELLI LUSK 53:03 AMHERST, MA 3 KRISTIN HALL 59:58 ARLINGTON, MA 4 DAWN HEINRICH 1:02:14 WOLFEBORO, NH 5 MARY MEEHAN-BATES 1:04:28 INTERVALE, NH 6 FRAN O'DONOGHUE 1:05:36 MIRROR LAKE, NH 7 RENEE PETIPAS 1:06:25 8 DONNA SMYTH 1:08:07 VERNON, VT 9 CARLA CHANDLER 1:08:39 PLAINFIELD, NH 10 KATHY HURST 1:09:01 FITZWILLIAM, NH
For complete race results visit: www.coolrunning.com/results/05/nh/Aug7_18thAn_set1.shtml Or www.whitemountainmilers.com
Paul Kirsch, Cranmore Hill Climb Race Director - 603-367-8676 email@example.com
Richard Bolt, Men's USATF LDR Mountain Rep - 603-494-6947 firstname.lastname@example.org
Nancy Hobbs, Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team Manager, 719-573-4133, email@example.com
For additional information visit the websites listed below:
Northfield Mountain Race www.USATFne.org
Teva Devil's Race www.trailrun.wors.org
Mt. Cranmore www.whitemountainmilers.com
World Mountain Running Association www.wmra.info
USA Track & Field www.USATF.org
World Mountain Trophy 2005 www.mountainrunning.org.nz/
All American Trail Running Association www.trailrunner.com
Teva - team title sponsor www.teva.com
SportHill Clothing - team sponsor www.sporthill.com
180s - team sponsor www.180s.com
ground™ - team sponsor www.groundwear.com
All American Trail Running Association www.trailrunner.com