Arritola wins her first women’s title; record field of more than 2,000
See images from the XTERRA Trail Run World Championship /// Watch the Highlight Video at XTERRA.tv
The anticipated rain never hit Kualoa Ranch, but the reign of Max King continued at the 2011 XTERRA Trail Run World Championship.
King, 31, won the XTERRA Trail Run World title for the fourth consecutive year, this time topping a record field at Kualoa Ranch, Oahu, Hawaii, on Sunday, December 4.
More than 2,000 runners from around world participated in the event, and in keeping with the tradition, none of them came close to King.
King, an Olympic marathon hopeful from Bend, Oregon, completed the 21.9-kilometer course (13.6 miles) in 1 hour, 21 minutes, 27 seconds. He received $2,000 and a roundtrip airfare from Hawaiian Airlines for the victory.
“I’m surprised,” King said. “I knew there was good competition, and to be honest, I wasn’t feeling 100 percent. So at the start, there were three of us and we kind of broke away, and I was surprised that more guys weren’t there with us. Then about halfway, I kind of broke away again and was really surprised to finish here that far ahead.”
King (pictured) said he was suffering from a cold and a sore Achilles. “I don’t know what it is about this race,” he said. “Maybe it’s because of the time of year and the travel, but I never seem to come here fully healthy, so I’m just happy to win it again.”
The XTERRA Trail Run World Championship at Kualoa Ranch was created in 2008, and King has won it every year. It rained on the island of Oahu earlier in the week, but the challenging trails at Kualoa Ranch remained dry for the race.
“It was real humid out there,” King said. “It was tough as always. You think you’re through the worst part and then that big hill comes up at you, so this race is always challenging.”
Peter Pechek of the Czech Republic (pictured) was this year’s runner-up, finishing with a time of 1:22:56. It was his first time racing in Hawaii.
“It’s a very difficult race,” Pechek said. “The downhills were really hard for me. I ran with (King) for the first 10K, then he got ahead. We have zero degrees in the Czech Republic right now, so to run in this hot weather was difficult, too.”
Ben Bruce of San Diego, California, was third in 1:23:01 – just five seconds behind Pechek. Bruce was in second for most of the course, but got caught in a logjam of the slower runners who were getting lapped.
“For me, this is totally out of my realm,” Bruce said. “I’m usually a track runner, and I do better on the roads. But it was chaos toward the end there, and I wasn’t expecting that. I kind of had to dodge the (slower) runners and got bumped and almost fell and that’s kind of when (Pechek) passed me.”
Bruce (pictured) has participated in the XTERRA Trail Run World Championship three times and has finished second (2008) and third twice (2009 and 2011).
“Any time you can run in a place like this, it’s worth it,” said Bruce, who decided to enter the race just three days earlier. “I have a lot of stuff on my schedule right now, but when I saw I had a chance to come, I booked it.”
The Puzey brothers finished fourth and fifth. Thomas Rivers Puzey, a student at nearby Brigham Young University-Hawaii, was fourth in 1:25:45. His older brother Jacob Puzey was fifth in 1:26:59.
“The funny thing is I never saw him the whole time,” said Thomas Rivers. “As soon as I finished, the first thing I thought of was him and where he was so I turned around and he was right behind.”
Jeffrey Moreland of Reno, Nevada, was sixth, followed by Brandon Laan from Canada.
ARRITOLA DOMINATES WOMEN’S FIELD
Morgan Arritola (pictured) was an impressive 10th place overall and first in the women’s division with a time of 1:33:00. It was her first XTERRA Trail Run World Championship in her first race in Hawaii, and she said she now understands why the course is often described as breathtaking in more ways than one.
“It was beautiful,” she said. “I wish I wasn’t dying so much out there so I could have enjoyed it a little more. The humidity really got to me.”
That’s excusable, considering that just last week, Arritola was training on snow skis in minus-15 degrees in her home state of Idaho. She is a member of the USA cross country ski team.
“The start was mayhem, there were so many runners,” she said. “So I kind of just kept running and never really saw any of the other women.”
That’s because no other women were close. Arritola finished more than four minutes ahead of the other females.
Lucy Smith (pictured), a former Canadian cross country champion, placed second with a time of 1:37:46. It was also her first appearance at the XTERRA Trail Run World Championship.
“It was an amazing experience, probably one of the hardest trail runs I’ve ever done,” Smith said. “I loved the way the trail took you to so many different parts of the park. I feel so much gratitude to be able to do this race and be on vacation in Hawaii at the same time.”
Smith said Arritola was within sight for the first few miles, but then her focus was on getting second place.
“Morgan was running at a pace I kind of knew I couldn’t hold,” Smith said. “So in the middle of the race, when I moved into second, I wanted to make sure nobody would come up behind me.”
Former Ironman world champion Heather Fuhr of Encinitas (pictured), California, was third in 1:40:52. Cindy Anderson, the 2008 women’s XTERRA Trail Run World Champion, was fourth in 1:42:08.
For complete results from the XTERRA Trail Run World Championship CLICK HERE.
2011 XTERRA TRAIL RUN WORLD CHAMP MONEY WINNERS
|1st||Max King||31||Bend, Oregon||1:21:27||$2,000|
|2nd||Petr Pechek||28||Trutnov, Czech Republic||1:22:56||$1,000|
|3rd||Ben Bruce||29||Eugene, Oregon||1:23:01||$750|
|4th||Rivers Puzey||27||Laie, Hawaii||1:25:45||$500|
|5th||Jacob Puzey||29||Hermiston, Oregon||1:26:59||$300|
|6th||Jeffrey Moreland||34||Reno, Nevada||1:27:10||$250|
|7th||Brandon Laan||28||London, Ontario, Canada||1:31:04||$200|
|1st||Morgan Arritola||25||Ketchum, Idaho||1:33:00||$2,000|
|2nd||Lucy Smith||44||Victoria, B.C., Canada||1:37:46||$1,000|
|3rd||Heather Fuhr||43||Encinitas, California||1:40:52||$750|
|4th||Cynthia Anderson||28||Kailua, Hawaii||1:42:08||$500|
|5th||Melanie McQuaid||38||Victoria, B.C., Canada||1:47:08||$300|
|6th||Susie Stephen||32||Tucson, Arizona||1:49:35||$250|
|7th||Eva Skalnikova||26||Morave, Czech Republic||1:51:43||$200|
THE 2011 XTERRA TRAIL RUN WORLD CHAMPIONS
In addition to the overall world champions, the 2011 XTERRA age-group world champions were also determined at Kualoa Ranch.
Max King won the men’s 30-34 age division, and is now the only runner with four consecutive titles.
Jarrell Hibler from Honolulu won the male 10-14 age division for the third consecutive year. At 14, he was the youngest world champion this year. The oldest was Haleiwa, Hawaii’s Dan Walker, who will turn 71 later this month.
Lee Saltonstall of Kailua won her third world title, capturing first place in the women’s 60-64 division.
The only other runners to repeat as age-group world champions were Colorado’s Andy Ames (men 45-49) and Canada’s Melanie McQuaid (women 35-39). Here’s a look at this year’s title winners…
|10-14||(3) Jarrell Hibler||Honolulu, Hawaii||1:55:26|
|15-19||Paul Hicks||Wahiawa, Hawaii||2:05:18|
|20-24||Dany Malley||Honolulu, Hawaii||1:37:33|
|25-29||Petr Pechek||Trutnov, Czech Republic||1:22:56|
|30-34||(4) Max King||Bend, Oregon||1:21:27|
|35-39||Nick Hirschfeld||Auckland, New Zealand||1:34:40|
|40-44||Keith Rieger||Surprise, Arizona||1:31:44|
|45-49||(2) Andy Ames||Boulder, Colorado||1:33:28|
|50-54||Ray Brust||Honolulu, Hawaii||1:46:35|
|55-59||Roger Handling||Roberts Creek, Canada||1:56:46|
|60-64||Richard Stoner||Venice, California||2:09:05|
|65-69||Jim Kettlewell||Whangarei, New Zealand||1:49:50|
|70-74||Dan Walker||Haleiwa, Hawaii||3:30:34|
|20-24||Alisha Gipe||Honolulu, Hawaii||2:01:48|
|25-29||Morgan Arritola||Ketchum, Idaho||1:33:00|
|30-34||Susie Stephen||Honolulu, Hawaii||1:49:35|
|35-39||(2) Melanie McQuaid||Victoria, B.C., Canada||1:47:08|
|40-44||Lucy Smith||Sidney, B.C., Canada||1:37:46|
|45-49||Susan Reynolds||Vancouver, B.C., Canada||1:55:28|
|50-54||Vicki Daniel||Honolulu, Hawaii||2:20:23|
|55-59||Brigitte Stemmer||Montreal, Canada||3:05:18|
|60-64||(3) Lee Saltonstall||Kailua, Hawaii||2:56:52|
|65-69||Jessie Stratton||Redding, California||2:55:04|
|(#) Denotes number of XTERRA World Titles|
|Overall Champs in Bold|
Team X-T.R.E.M.E. Conquers Kualoa Again
Team X-T.R.E.M.E. once again completed the XTERRA Trail Run World Championship as a unit in an effort to raise funds and awareness for fellow military members wounded in Afghanistan or Iraq.
The Team X-T.R.E.M.E. runners this year were Jeremy Soles, Charles Hewitt and Matthew Small. They ran the entire course together, and with gas masks secured to their faces to bring attention to their efforts.
This year, they dedicated their race to Cpl. Todd Love (pictured), a U.S. Marine who lost both his legs and part of his left arm when an explosive was triggered while he was on a reconnaissance mission in Afghanistan in October 2010.
The team, including Cpl. Love, parachuted into Kualoa Ranch before the start of the race. After the race, the team presented a commemorative bracelet to Love and did push-ups with him.
Team X-T.R.E.M.E. (the letters stand for Trail, Rehabilitate, Empower, Motivate and Endure) was able to travel to Hawaii and pay for Love’s trip with the help of several sponsors, including Outrigger Hotels & Resorts.
XTERRA Kualoa 10km and 5km Winners
The event also featured separate courses at 10 kilometers and 5 kilometers. Christopher Chatellier of Honolulu captured first place in the 10K with a time of 35:21. He is stationed with the U.S. Army at Schofield Barracks, and this was his first victory in a running event.
Mariane Uehara Marr of Honolulu (via Brazil) was the first female finisher in the 10K with a time of 40:06. She normally enters the 21K championship course, but said she recently completed the New York Marathon and also wanted to conserve some energy for next week, when she runs in the Honolulu Marathon.
Gianni Cuadrado of Kapolei, Hawaii, was first overall in the 5K, and Jordin Stephenson of Stanwood, Washington, was the first female.
For complete results from the 10K and 5K races, CLICK HERE.
The XTERRA Trail Run World Championship was the last race in a 70-stop World Tour – a national and international series of trail races ranging from 5km to 42km held in eight countries and 15 U.S. states.
The race was filmed for a segment in the nationally syndicated XTERRA Adventures TV show that will start airing in May 2012.
The XTERRA Trail Run World Championship is presented by Paul Mitchell, Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, and Hawaiian Airlines. Sponsors include the Hawaii Tourism Authority, OC 16, Kualoa Ranch, GU Energy Gel, Gatorade, Zorrel, and the XTERRA Alliance – Vitality, Footwear, Fitness, Flex, Wetsuits, and Cycling.
TEAM Unlimited, a Hawaii-based television events and marketing company, owns and produces XTERRA. In 2011 there were more than 200 XTERRA off-road triathlon and trail running events held in 15 countries.