Monday, July 28, 2008

Pikes Peak Marathon Preview

The field looks loaded this year. Roadies, trail dogs, and ultra studs all coming together to rock the mountain. We've got veterans and rookies, altitude-trained athletes and flatlanders. It's going to be good.

The Contenders:

Kreighton Bieger (34, Boulder, CO) – 16th in 2005 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:32). 13th in 2005 Pikes Peak Ascent (2:44). Couldn't find anything more recent, but that is a very impressive double.

Bernie Boettcher (45, Silt, CO) – 5th at Barr Trail Race in 2008. 3rd at Pikes Peak Marathon in 2007 (4:14). 7th at Pikes Peak Marathon in 2006 (4:08). 2007 St. George Marathon 2:33. 2008 Salt Lake Marathon 2:44. 5th at 2008 Barr Trail Race. 3rd at 2006 Imogene Pass Trail Run. The list goes on and on.

Simon Booth (40, Carlisle, United Kingdom) – I'm having trouble tracking down the page that lists his profile and times on the PPM webpage. Can't find much else through Google either. When I mentioned his name last night at the FF run to Scotsman John Beech, I got a response of "SIMON BOOTH!" John said he's fast. How fast, he didn't know.
Matt Carpenter (44, Manitou Springs, CO) – 1st at Pikes Peak Ascent in 200_ (insert any number). 1st at Pikes Peak Marathon in 200_(insert any number). 1st at Barr Trail Race last 5 years. 1st at Mt. Evans Ascent in 2008 (1:37, CR).

Bryan Dayton (35, Boulder, CO) – Two-time US 50K trail champion. 7th at Barr Trail Race in 2008. 4th at Mt. Evans Ascent in 2008. 4th at 2008 Greenland Trail 25K. 5th at Imogene in 2007 and 6th in 2006. Team Inov-8 member with Pikes Peak Marathon listed as the goal race for the year online.
Chuck Engle (37, Columbus, OH) – Consistent 2:30 marathoner. Ran 52 marathons in 2006, all between 2:31 and 2:59. Recently, in Washington State on 6/7/08 he ran a 2:51 marathon and the next day on 6/8/08, he ran a 2:48 marathon. 4th at 2008 Grandfather Mountain Marathon (NC) in 2:51. In a flat race, he's got as much as speed as anyone in the field and I'd expect him to come down with a 1:30-1:35 descent if he handles the ascent well.

Greg Feucht (30, Albuquerque, NM) – Team Inov-8. Couldn't find much on him, but I hear he's fast and it appears that he won the 2006 Great Wall of China Marathon, has placed well at the Dances with Dirt 50K, and has put up some solid times at shorter distances.

Dave Heald (29, Durango, CO) – 26th in 2007 Pikes Peak Ascent (2:45). 12th at 2008 Barr Trail Race. 9th at 2007 Imogene Pass Trail Run (2:39) and 8th in 2006. 1st at 2008 Kendall Mountain Run. Listed as a doubler, so that likely takes him out of the top 10.

Heath Hibbard (55, Montrose, CO) – 7th in 2007 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:49). 22nd in 2006 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:51). 17th at 2007 Imogene Pass Trail Run (2:46). 20th at 2008 Mt. Evans Ascent.

Erin Hutchinson (39, Flagstaff, AZ) – 4th in 2007 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:20). 10th in 2006 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:14). 7th in 2005 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:13). 2nd at 2008 Whiskey Row Marathon (3:09). 2nd at 2006 Flagstaff Marathon (3:20). 10th at 2007 Imogene Pass Trail Run (2:39).

Kraig Koski (41, Longmont, CO) – 14th in 2007 Pikes Peak Ascent (2:35). 4th at 2007 Lead King Loop 25K. A 2:35 ascent would position him very well near the front in the marathon.

Dave Mackey (38, Boulder, CO) – 1st at Miwok 100K in 2008 (CR). 6th at Barr Trail Race in 2008. 1st at Mt. Evans Ascent in 2007 (1:50). 2nd at 2007 Pikes Peak Marathon (3:50). 6th at 2008 Barr Trail Race. 2nd at Greenland Trail 25K. Grand Canyon R2R2R course record holder. Shown recently that he still has 17 flat 5K speed.

Justin Mock (26, Arvada, CO) – 1st at Fruita 25 in 2007 (3:05, CR) and 2008 (3:20). 1st at Colfax Marathon in 2007 (2:50) and 2008 (2:43*). 2nd at Steamboat Marathon in 2007 (2:45). 8th at Imogene in 2007 (2:38).

Daryn Parker (27, Manitou Springs, CO) – 9th at Mt. Evans Ascent 2008. 7th in Pikes Peak Ascent in 2007 (2:23). 3rd in Pikes Peak Ascent in 2006 (2:18). 5th in Pikes Peak Ascent in 2005 (2:31). 3rd at Barr Trail Race in 2008. I couldn't find a pic of him, so he gets the horse.
Kyle Skaggs (23, Silverton, CO) – 1st at Lake City 50 in 2007. 1st at Moab 50K in 2008 (CR). 1st at Hardrock 100 in 2008 (CR). Wasatch 100 course record holder. Wonderland Trail (around Mt. Rainier) course record holder. Former Grand Canyon R2R2R course record holder. Appeared to be a late entrant, but now appears to be not running. Still time to change his mind though.

Mike Smiley (47, Colorado Springs, CO) – 5th in 2007 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:26). 14th in 2006 Pikes Peak Marathon (4:37).

George Zack (38, Broomfield, CO) – 6th at Pikes Peak Marathon in 2007 (4:32). 6th at La Luz in 2007. 2nd at Mt. Evans Ascent in 2007 (1:51). 12th in Pikes Peak Ascent in 2006 (2:37). 4th at 2006 Imogene Pass Trail Run. Possible doubler.

Predicted Finish:

I think we've got 3-4 different tiers up front. First, I expect Carpenter to be the only one to go sub 3:50, maybe sub 3:40, doesn't matter, he'll win. Places 2-6 should all be between 3:50 and 4:00. If any of these guys have a bad day, they could slip to over 4:00, but likely stay in the top 6. The rest of the contenders will be looking to fill 4 spots to snag a top 10. I don't think anyone in the next group will break 4:10 and places 7-12 will be between 4:10 and 4:20. If Skaggs was in, It could take a 4:15 to crack the top 10 this year. As it is, we get a slight break, but I still would've had the most competitive field possible show up. No to say that I think I'll be there, but I'm purposely leaving myself out of the top 10 for a bit of extra motivation.

1 - Matt Carpenter
2 - Daryn Parker
3 - Dave Mackey
4 - Bernie Boettcher
5 - Simon Booth
6 - Bryan Dayton
7 - Chuck Engle
8 - Greg Feucht
9 - Erin Hutchinson
10 - Mike Smiley


GZ said...

Excellent write up. Are you pushing up stock on Engle?

Justin Mock said...

I think 7-10 are up for grabs. Of this group, Engle has the most leg speed. He’s consistent in his results, so I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on his climbing ability. He’ll be top 10 at least. Nothing higher than 7, nothing lower than 10.

dave heald said...

Starting to get excited for race weekend now... for what it's worth, I won't be doubling at Pike's. Despite some initial thoughts about the double, I've decided to focus on a top 10 finish in the marathon. If I'm correct, I think I remember chasing you down the descent at Imogene last year - just couldn't make up that 40 second gap though... best of luck

Dave Heald

Justin Mock said...

I’ve tried to convince George Zack to forget about the double and to just race the ‘thon too. Looks like me, you, and Hutchinson were all real close at Imogene last year. Don’t remember you guys, but looking at splits, appears that I was way up on you both at Upper Camp Bird and had lost all of that by the summit, I think Hutchinson may have been ahead at the summit even. I thought I descended pretty well at Imo, so if you matched me on the descent, you must’ve too. If you’re not doubling then, me, you and Hutchinson likely will all be pretty close again then, hopefully rounding out the top 10. Say hi at the line if you get a chance and good luck!

Brett said...

I remember when I looked at the competitive entry list Simon Booth was listed as being some world mountain running champion a few times or something...but most of the stats listed were from 2000-2005.

I just did another search for him on Google and found this:

Don't know what the altitude was, but its an ascent (it appeared) which gained 6000 feet in 18 miles and he won the race in 2 hrs 52 mins.

Justin Mock said...


Good research. He appears to be the real deal and fit. I still have to give the nod to the Colo boys though.

Michael Quispe said...

Could be a toss up with Daryn Parker and Dave Mackey. Dave has incredible downhill skills.

KB said...

Holy crap! I was recently pointed to this post and am alternately amused and horrified. 2005 was a good year for me; I actually trained and lost 20 pounds. But putting me in with this bunch is just silly.

On my best days I only lose maybe 1 min/mile to Bernie.

My subsequent PPA times should have disqualified me...

Aw, it was fun while it lasted, and thanks for briefly inflating my ego.

Kreighton B.