Toews, Worline win Mount Sopris Runoff 14-mile crowns; Garrard breaks 4-mile record |

Toews, Worline win Mount Sopris Runoff 14-mile crowns; Garrard breaks 4-mile record

Mike Vidakovich
Special to the Post Independent
Wesley Toews of New Castle was the overall winner of the 14-mile Mt. Sopris Runoff Saturday morning at the 51st Carbondale Mountain Fair.
John Stroud/Post Independent

Saturday morning, the Carbondale Mountain Fair played host to the 43rd annual Mount Sopris Runoff 14-miler, and its little sister, the 4-Mile Fair Run. Both races, with a total of 83 runners between them, finished right in the heart of the Mountain Fair at Sopris Park.

Wesley Toews of New Castle, proving why he is one of the area’s most highly regarded runners, captured the title in the longer version of the day’s races, hitting the finish tape in 1 hour and 32 minutes. Toews was forced to keep his foot on the accelerator until the very end, with the closing speed of second place Finn Leahy reducing the final margin of victory to just 30 seconds.

“This is the fifth time I have done this race, and today’s time was my slowest ever,” said Toews, who was the 10K winner at the Maggie’s Mountain Run at the Argonaut Farm a few weeks back. “This is the first time I have won it, though, so I’ll take it.”

Leahy, who runs collegiately at Whitman College in Washington state, was timed at 1:32:30.

The women’s 14-mile winner was former Glenwood Demon track and cross country standout Emily Worline. Worline, who will be entering her senior season running for Westminster College in Salt Lake City, had a time of 1:49:07, which was 10 minutes better than her Sopris Runoff time last summer.

Emily Worline of Glenwood Springs was the top female finisher in the 14-mile Mt. Sopris Runoff Saturday morning at the 51st Carbondale Mountain Fair.
John Stroud/Post Independent

“I go back to school here in a few weeks, and I just wanted to get in a challenging longer run before cross country practice starts,” said Worline, who also played basketball for the Demons. “And what a beautiful race this is.”

The day’s showstopper was without a doubt 4-Mile winner Justin Garrard, who set a course record with a blistering time of 18 minutes, 28 seconds. Garrard is coming off a Strawberry Days triple, with victories in the Strawberry Shortcut 10K, 5K and 1 mile all in the same morning on June 19.

“It’s Mountain Fair, and it’s a great opportunity to be out among friends,” said Garrard, who has qualified to run in the USA 20K championships over Labor Day weekend in New Haven, Connecticut. “Plus, this is a nice, fast course.”

This December in Sacramento, Garrard will attempt to qualify for the United States Olympic trials marathon at the California International Marathon. He will need to run a 2 hour, 18 minute time or better to do so.

Second place in the 4-Miler was Glenwood’s Josh Hejtmanek, who is a regular on the podium at local running events. Hejtmanek claimed second, but his 2-year old daughter, Charlotte, came in just ahead of him in the stroller Josh was pushing throughout the race. Hejtmanek’s time was 25:46.

The women’s winner, and placing eighth overall, was Megan Ravenscraft with a time of 29:53. Second for the ladies, and 10th overall at 30:27, was Kessiah Carlbon.

There were 48 runners in the 4-Mile and 35 participants in the 14-mile. The race was put on by Independence Run and Hike in Carbondale.

Top 10 Overall Finishers (*Denotes Female)

14-Mile: 1. Wesley Toews, 1 hour, 32 minutes; 2. Finn Leahy, 1:32:30; 3. Nico Plume, 1:40:16; 4. Sean Nesbitt, 1:40:49; 5. Chris Green, 1:42:24; 6. Chris Bridges, 1:46:11; 7. *Emily Worline, 1:49:07; 8. Quinn Harnett, 1:50:28; 9. Dave Rasmussen, 1:51:08; 10. Matt Dumbulin, 1:55:11.

4-Mile: 1. Justin Garrard, 18 minutes, 28 seconds; 2. Josh Hejtmanek (& Charlotte), 25:46; 3. Will Rose, 28:06; 4. Hank Zimmerman, 28:22; 5. John Stroud, 28:36; 6. 29:13 (no name on finish tag); 7. Brad Palmer, 29:47; 8. *Megan Ravenscraft, 29:53; 9. Mark Feinsinger, 30:07; 10. *Kessiah Carlbon, 30:27.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.