Popular event showcases hills and valleys of northwest Montana to visitors and residents alike
WHITEFISH, Mont. (May 22, 2023) – As the sun shined on nearby Glacier National Park, participants from nearly 40 states and three countries crossed the finish line of the Whitefish Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K Powered by Hammer Nutrition on Saturday, May 20, 2023. The 16th annual event, held in Whitefish, Mont., saw two new course records and a steady growth in participants.
Elizabeth Wasserman of Columbia Falls, Mont., broke her own course record from the 2022 Whitefish Half Marathon Powered by Hammer Nutrition by crossing the finish line in 1:21:10, more than two minutes faster than last year. “My goal was to beat the course record that I set last year,” Wasserman said. “I was definitely hoping to run faster today but considering the warm weather and lingering smoke I knew that I would have to run a conservative pace to feel more comfortable throughout the race.” Alyssa Foote of Aloha, Ore., won the Whitefish 5K Powered by Hammer Nutrition outright in 18:06 and broke the previous women’s course record by more than one minute.
Race winners and podium finishers include:
Whitefish Marathon Powered by Hammer Nutrition:
Male 1 (overall) – Michael Ortley, 2:56:34, Kalispell, Mont.
Male 2 – Ryan Wilbur, 3:06:50, Kalispell
Male 3 – Jacob Deitz, 3:14:00, Whitefish
Female 1 – Elizabeth Paddock, 3:31:04, Missoula, Mont.
Female 2 – Robin Bewley, 3:32:51, Whitefish
Female 3 – Charlene Leroux, 3:34:16, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Whitefish Half Marathon Powered by Hammer Nutrition:
Male 1 (overall) – Micah Drew, 1:11:12, Whitefish
Male 2 – Peter Schommer, 1:15:16, Helena, Mont.
Male 3 – Jared Jimmerson, 1:21:00, Sandy, Utah
Female 1 – Elizabeth Wasserman, 1:21:10, Columbia Falls*
Female 2 – Flavie Dokken, 1:31:37, Whitefish
Female 3 – Jeni Halowski, 1:36:22, Lethbridge
Whitefish 5K Powered by Hammer Nutrition:
Male 1 – Parker Barrile, 19:51, Whitefish
Male 2 – Robert Roberts, Jr., 22:19, Missoula
Male 3 – Ryan Fatheree, 22:30, Whitefish
Female 1 (overall) – Alyssa Foote, 18:06, Aloha, Ore.*
Female 2 – Kari Eberline, 21:07, Kalispell
Female 3 – Alexis Kemp, 21:42, Kalispell
*Indicates a course record
Thanks to the support of Hammer Nutrition, event organizers were able to offer a cash purse to the top finishers of the full and half marathons for the second consecutive year. In addition to podium awards, top Whitefish Marathon Powered by Hammer Nutrition finishers received awards from the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA), as the event hosted the 2023 RRCA Marathon State Championship race for Montana. RRCA, the largest running association in the U.S., provided awards in categories including open male and female, 40-plus male and female, 50-plus male and female, and 60-plus male and female. The RRCA Championship Event Series is the largest grassroots-organized running series in the U.S. with over 200 races participating that attract nearly 300,000 participants. RRCA Championship Events are designated annually at the State, Regional, and National level through a competitive bidding process.
The Whitefish Marathon, which began in 2008 as the Two Bear Marathon, is now owned by the nonprofit The Wave Aquatic and Fitness Center and currently managed by CRRG Events. Since 2017, the event has undergone significant updates including a rebrand and date shift from September to May, as well as the additions of the half marathon and 5K distances. The full marathon, historically known as a hilly course with more than 1,100 feet of elevation change, included a four-mile course change between miles 13 and 26 for 2023. Proceeds from the race benefit The Wave’s Membership Assistance Fund, for those in financial need, and the School to Pool Swim Program.
“We couldn’t be happier after today’s event,” said Art Krueger, general manager of The Wave. “With the air quality problems looming earlier in the week, we were just grateful to have participants on the start line with the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful day in Whitefish. We’re really pleased this event is putting Whitefish on the map as a popular destination race for runners all over the country, Even more than that, we love seeing our local community members and out-of-town visitors celebrate together at the finish line.”
For full race results and future event information, please visit WhitefishMarathon.com