Going the distance at Madathon | RecordCourier.com

Going the distance at Madathon

Molly Zurn from Reno nears the top on her way to taking the home the women's title of the Genoa Peak Madathon on June 9.
Scott Rokis Photography

Thanks to a lot of endurance, not to mention some patience, Coree Woltering emerged as the overall winner of the 25-mile race at the Genoa Peak Madathon trail run on June 9.

Woltering, a professional trail and ultra runner from Ottawa, Ill., came from behind to win the Ascent Runs-hosted race in a time of 4 hours and 25 seconds on a course that extended from the town of Genoa to the top of Genoa Peak and back. A total of 24 runners finished the 25-mile race.

Sean Betesh was the first runner to cover the 11-mile distance to the summit of Genoa Peak, however, Woltering was able to make up an eight-minute gap on the way back down, a 14-mile stretch that included a stretch of rolling hills that extended southward toward Genoa Canyon.

The race was part of a visit to the Lake Tahoe area for the 28-year-old Woltering, who is running on Saturday in the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run from Squaw Valley to Auburn, Calif.

Woltering has already had a busy spring competition-wise, having placed second at the Quicksilver 50K in San Jose on May 12 and at the American River 50 Mile Endurance Run from Folsom to Auburn on April 7.

Never mind that this course featured an elevation gain that exceeded 6,700 feet — to Genoa Peak at an altitude of 9,150 feet — Woltering looked forward to the challenge.

“First full week at altitude … Looking forward to a fun day at the Genoa Peak Madathon in the AM,” he posted on Twitter the day before the Madathon.

Kevin Bigley, Madathon race director, was obviously pleased to see a quality race.

“It was great to have someone of his caliber to come here and get a sense of how tough this course is,” he said of Woltering. “And at the same time, it gave the local guys a chance to see how they stack up against a runner like Coree.”

Betesh, a foot and ankle surgeon from Carson City, was the second overall finisher in 4:14:52.

“Sean is new to the area, but he was strong to the top,” Bigley said. “Coree just finished really strong; to come from eight minutes down to win by 14 minutes shows why he is one of the best ultra runners in the country.”

Woltering is fast enough to have run 2:26:44 at the 2016 Chicago Marathon. A sprinter and middle distance runner in high school, he turned personal bests of 1:55.37 for 800 meters and 4:18.58 for one mile at Greenville University (Illinois).

Since then, Woltering has twice qualified for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships triathlon, according to the Darn Tough Vermont (darntough.com) website, and his 50-mile time of 5:30:15 at Tunnel Hill (Illinois) was the second fastest time in North America during 2016.

Jeff Smith of Truckee finished third in the Madathon race with a 4:15:31 effort. Joselio Ramirez, 52, of Minden placed fourth overall and first in the men’s 50-59 age group with a time of 4:49:15.

Molly Zurn, 47, of Reno was the first woman and sixth overall finisher in 4:52:05. Erica Sonnenberg of Carnelian Bay was the second woman in 5:14:22, while Valerie Gordon of Gardnerville was the third woman in 5:35:32.

In the Madathon 8-mile race, Aaron Russell of Reno led a field of 26 finishers. Russell, 31, covered the distance in 1:07:57, followed by Carson City’s Jennifer Todd, 43, the second overall finisher and first woman in 1:12:06. Bailey Gansberg, 20, of Gardnerville placed third overall in 1:17:51, five seconds ahead of Jason Kerver in fourth-place.

Norah Gastelum of Gardnerville ran 1:24:25 to finish first in the women’s 50-59 age group and seventh overall.

Minden’s Ty Tremaine was another professional athlete who ran at the Madathon. The 22-year-old Tremaine ran 1:25:55 to finish eighth overall and first in the men’s 20-29 age group as part of his preparation to compete at the prestigious International Six Day Enduro motorcycle race on Nov. 12-17 in Viña Del Mar, Chile. Tremaine rode at the ISDE last year in France, adding to a resume in which he became the first American to win the International Motorcycling Federation junior world SuperEnduro championship in 2015, in addition to three appearances at the X Games between 2013-15.

The Madathon is part of the Ascent Runs Tahoe Dirt & Vert Series that continues on June 30, when Creek2Peak is held at Davis Creek Regional Park in Washoe Valley (approximately 21 miles long and 5,000 feet of climbing). The series will conclude on Aug. 4 with the Capital Climb, which will start from Carson City and summits at the top of Snow Valley Peak at 9,218 feet.

Visit ascentruns.com for information.

Note: This marked the fifth running of the Genoa Peak Madathon, which started in 2013 and went on hiatus in 2016.