The Rebels XC Challenge kicked off the local adult cross country season yesterday in Granite Park, and competitors enjoyed picture-perfect weather and a challenging course.
The winding trails through Granite Park do not yield a particularly speedy course, but as typical for a PAUSATF cross country race the times were fast and the competition fierce.
The event stuck with the usual PA cross country format, with separate races for women, masters men, and open men, with the women running 5K and the men 7K.
Also, the Rebels include a “Citizens” 5K before the main events, and 35 or so non-PA runners were able to enjoy a race, too.
The women ran first and for the second year in a row, Lindsay Tollefson (formerly Nelson), of Mammoth ran away with the win in 17:26. Tollefson was followed in by Nicole Campbell, of Mountain View, in 17:52 and Michelle Meyer, of San Francisco, in 18:02.
The first masters woman was Suzanne Segesta, 41, of Redwood City, who ran 18:14 for 4th overall. Rounding out the top-three masters were Jennifer Jackson, 42, of Davis, who was 10th overall in 18:47, and Nancy Thomas, 43, of San Francisco, who was 12th overall in 19:11.
The masters men ran next and Jose Pina, 42, of San Jose, narrowly beat out Marcelo Lerda, 41, of Lincoln, running 23:22 to Lerda’s 23:26. Mason Myers, 43, of Carmichael finished 3rd in 23:54.
Interestingly, I could have cut and pasted this last paragraph from last year’s article as these three men finished in the exact same order!
In the open men’s race, Kevin Pool, 29, of Folsom, was also a repeat winner, finishing in 21:05. However, this year he out sprinted Alex Varner, 27, of San Rafael, in the last quarter mile. Varner’s finish time was 21:16.
Coming in third was Joseph Rivera, 23, of Tulare, who brought it home in 21:56, and hot on his heels in 4th was Thomas Whitcomb, 25, of Chico, in 22:00.
Once again, to the credit of the Rebels, the event was run smoothly. The course was well-marked and well-marshaled, and if the vagrants hadn’t stolen most of the toilet paper from the porta-potties, I’d say it was a perfect day in the park.
The next local cross country race on the schedule is the Buffalo Chips’ 4th Annual Willow Hills XC, in Folsom, on October 6th.
Following that is the Golden West’s 3rd Annual Ancil Hoffman Challenge, on October 27th.
You’ve got just enough time between now and then to clean up those old cross-country spikes and work on your hay-bale jumping.
Note: This story was updated to correct Mason Myers’ finish time.