You dont expect a sprint to the finish in a 64 kilometre trail race especially one with more than 1,200 metres of climbing and over 34 km of singletrack but thats how the sixth annual STORMY (Squamish Test of Running Metal, Yeah!) played out on Saturday.
In the Mens Under 40 category, John Foy and Paul Purin raced to the finish to tie for third place overall, with a common time of five hours, 51 minutes and 30 seconds.
In the Solo Mens 50-Plus age category. Jim Bowers of Garibaldi Highlands finished 10 seconds back of North Vancouvers Mark Pedlow, who crossed the line in 6:24:23.
Second place in the Mens 40 to 49 race was also close, with Randy Ranking finishing just 27 seconds back of Peter Villella.
The only solo Whistler runner in this years event was Michelle Kaminski, an ultra runner who has been in the event every year since the beginning. She finished in 7:39:15, sixth in the Womens Under 40 category.
The turnout for this years race was about the same as last year, which was the first year for the STORMY relay category. There were 74 solo competitors and 15 teams of three.
"It started six years ago with about 26 solo competitors and its grown fairly steadily since then," said event co-organizer Rich Rawling. "We were about equal in numbers to last year, after we included the relay category in an attempt to get more normal people to race it with all due respect to the solo ultra runners who do this thing on their own."
Team BOB was the fastest male relay team in 4:53:46, averaging just over 12 km/h. The team was made up of Jesse Lyman, Patrick Gross and Sukhi Muker.
The Good The Bad The Ugly (Joanne Wild, Sam Lotfi-Pour and Mike Heilger) were second overall and first in the Mixed category in 5:19:30.
North Shore Athletics Chicks (Bitsy Delaney, Sylvie Jorger and Lissa Poloni) were the fastest female team in 6:35:39.
Whistlers Christina MacVicar raced for the Squamish Salmonberries, running two stages of the course to help her team to the finish in 8:03:31.
Male Under 40
1. Jamie Armstrong 5:25:15
2. Aaron Pitt 5:50:10
3. John Foy 5:51:30
Male 40 to 49
1. Chris Benn 5:55:17
2. Peter Villella 6:10:43
3. Randy Rankin 6:11:10
1. Mark Pedlow 6:24:13
2. Jim Bowers 6:24:23
3. Karl Jensen 7:24:49
Female Under 40
1. Rachel Nelson 6:25:38
2. Christine Little 6:51:26
3. Sharon Simms 7:07:17
Female 40 to 49
1. Patricia Jensen 6:21:57
2. Ragan Petrie 6:40:04
3. Elspeth Miller 7:07:35
1. Pam Pedlow 8:27:55
2. Luisa Ciarniello 9:36:13