U.S. men secure silver as part of 9th WMRA World Long Distance Challenge
With a come-from-behind victory, Stevie Kremer, bested the field of more than 1,800 runners at the 20th Jungfrau Marathon in Interlaken, Switzerland on September 8, to win gold in a time of 3 hours, 22 minutes, 42 seconds. For her victory, Kremer earned 10,000 CHF, approximately $10,500.
"The race was nothing short of spectacular," said the 28-year-old Kremer. "From the organization to the support, to the course and the views, this was an amazing race. I am thrilled to have been a part of it and so proud and excited for Team USA!"
Kremer refers to Team USA's gold medal team victory in the World Long Distance Challenge division of the race. The team of five, with three to score was selected in mid-June before Kremer indicated her interest in racing Jungfrau, so she was not a scoring member for the team.
Leading Team USA - an all-Colorado squad - to the gold medal was third-place finisher Kim Dobson who posted a time of 3:26:58.
"Wow, what an incredible race!" said the Grand Junction resident. "The scenery was breathtaking and the crowd's enthusiasm was so exciting it brought tears to my eyes. I am so thankful I was a part of this race. I would love to come back!"
Cracking the top ten, was the second scoring member of Team USA, Melody Fairchild, 38, Boulder, who finished in ninth position with a time of 3:44:22 and the third scoring member for Team USA was Brandy Erholtz, 35, Evergreen, who finished in 16th place in 3:49:29.
Rounding out the team finish was the Carbondale-based pair of 25-year-old Ashley Arnold, and 30-year-old Gina Lucrezi who finished just 49 seconds apart with Arnold posting a time of 4:02.00 for 32nd place while Lucrezi finished in 35th place.
The scoring for the World Long Distance Challenge is calculated based on combined times of the top three runners. Team USA won by nearly ten minutes over home country Switzerland; Austria finished in third position.
"All the other teams and race organization were most complimentary of our women. I think they see the USA as serious about, and committed to the sport of mountain running," said team manager and Team USA men's member Jason Bryant.
The men's race in the 9th WMRA Long Distance Mountain Running Challenge was held September 9, 2012, and Team USA won the silver medal led by an outstanding performance by Boulder, Colorado's Sage Canaday, 26, who finished in fifth place. Team USA amassed a finish time of 9:38; just six minutes shy of the gold medal.
"It was an honor to take part in the Jungfrau Marathon - the World Long Distance Mountain Running Challenge - and help the men's team to a second-place performance. I felt like I had a solid race although my hamstrings cramped up pretty bad on the climbs and I actually had to stop and stretch a couple of times," said the youngest member of the team. "The views up the mountain were top-notch and despite the pain of the effort I tried to enjoy the mountain views. Being a part of the U.S. team also helped motivate me as I knew my teammates were counting on me in the competitive team title. Also inspiring was the U.S. women's team performing so amazingly well the day before."
Just missing the top ten was San Francisco's Galen Burrell, 33, who finished in 11th place in a time of 3:10:58 to Canaday's 3:06:47.
The final scoring member of the team was The Netherlands-based Zac Freudenburg who lists his home town as St. Louis, MO. Freudenburg finished in 32nd position with a time of 3:20:34.
The USA men's team of five included 29-year-old Josh Ferenc, Saxtons River, VT, and Jason Bryant, 40, Elkin, NC who served as both a team member and manager of the squad.
Switzerland won the men's team competition with a time of 9:32:11 while the bronze medal was awarded to Germany with a combined time of 9:42:22.
This is the second time the Jungfrau Marathon, located in Interlaken, Switzerland, served as the host race for the World Long Distance Challenge. This was the 20th anniversary of this world-renowned event with nearly 6,500 runners crossing the finish line.
Prize money went ten deep for both men and women and there were also sprint premiums at different points along the course. The prize purse was 56,500 CHF, approximately $60,000.
The 10th World Long Distance Challenge will be held in Szklarska, Poland on August 3, 2013.
20th Jungfrau Marathon: WMRA World Long Distance Challenge
Interlaken, SUI, September 8- 9, 2012
WOMEN - September 8
1) Stevie Kremer (USA), 3:22:42.9
2) Sabine Reiner (AUT), 3:24:10.0
3) Kim Dobson (USA), 3:26:58.3
4) Aline Camboulives (FRA), 3:27:28.4
5) Maude Mathys (SUI), 3:35:40.5
1) USA, 11:00:50.4
Kim Dobson, 3:26:58.3
Melody Fairchild, 3:44:22.2
Brandy Erholtz, 3:49:29.9
Ashley Arnold, 4:02:00.8
Gina Lucrezi, 4:02:49.7
2) SUI, 11:09:53.5
Jasmin Nunige, 3:36:13.6
Angela Niederuzwil, 3:46:11.9
Daniela Aeschbacher, 3:47:28.0
Karin Jaun, 3:49:45.5
3) AUT, 11:35:29.2
Sabine Reiner, 3:24:10.0
Karin Freitag, 3:47:17.5
Carina Lilge-Leutner, 4:24:01.7
Thea Lillehov, 4:37:35.3
MEN - September 9
1) Markus Hohenwarter (AUT), 2:59:42.2
2) Mitja Kosovelj (SLO), 3:00:47.3
3) Hosea Tuei (KEN), 3:01:24.4
4) Patrick Wieser (SUI), 3:03:11.6
5) Sage Canaday (USA), 3:06:47.0
1) SUI, 9:32:11.0
Patrick Wieser, 3:03:11.6
Marc Lauenstein, 3:12:45.3
Christian Mathys, 3:16:14.1
Ralf Birchmeierm, 3:16:30.3
Stephan Wenk, 3:28:34.6
2) USA, 9:38:20.1
Sage Canaday, 3:06:47.0
Galen Burrell, 3:10:58.9
Zac Freudenburg, 3:20:34.2
Josh Ferenc, 3:32:31.9
Jason Bryant, 3:37:29.3
3) GER, 9:42:22.3
Marco Sturm, 3:10:52.0
Ulrich Benz, 3:15:13.1
Stefan Hubert, 3:16:17.2
Martin Schedler, 3:18:19.3
Deeper results at: www.jungfrau-marathon.ch