Sacramento Running News

Running news and gossip from in and around Sacramento

Pfeifer, Medina Tops at Gold Rush 100K

May 14, 2014 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Trails, Ultrarunning

schneider gold rush

Kirsten Schneider on the way to a 50K win. (Photo courtesy of Gold Rush 100K)

McDonald, Schneider earn Gold Rush 50k victories

By John Schumacher

Paulo Medina and Jen Pfeifer took the long way home to individual titles and Mike McDonald and Kirsten Schneider ran point-to-point for their victories on a pleasant, picturesque Saturday in the second annual Gold Rush 100k/50k.

Orangevale’s Medina won the men’s 100k, completing the course that began and ended in historic Folsom in 10 hours, 6 minutes and 2 seconds. He ran conservatively for most of the course that followed the American River and Folsom Lake into the foothills before catching leader Brian Miller of El Dorado Hills with 12 miles to go and pulling away.

Miller finished second for the second consecutive year, this time in 10:22:56.

“It was a good day,” said Medina, a 30-year-old manager for Gold Country Run + Sport in El Dorado Hills. “I took it easy the first 40 miles and then started taking people down.”

El Dorado’s Pfeifer, a history teacher at Ponderosa High School in Shingle Springs, won her second consecutive Gold Rush 100k women’s title with ease, reaching the finish in 11:15:48. Diana Fitzpatrick of Larkspur finished second in 12:17:22.

“It was fun; it was beautiful,” said Pfeifer, 42. “I felt really good for a long, long time. Then the last few miles, it was really windy going on Folsom bridge.”

McDonald and Schneider stood out in the 50k race, which started in historic Folsom and finished at the Magnolia Ranch trailhead along Highway 49 four miles north of Coloma. McDonald won the men’s race in 4:52:15 and Schneider captured the women’s title in 5:15:05.

For McDonald, the race provided an opportunity to come down from Chester, on the north shore of Lake Almanor in Plumas County, and race in different conditions.
“It was rough,” said McDonald, a 34-year-old biologist for the U.S. Forest Service. “It’s my fault. It’s my long run of the year.”

Sacramento’s Schneider, 45, hadn’t run an ultra in nearly a decade. But the freelance commercial writer couldn’t have scripted the outcome any better.

“It was ideal weather,” she said. “The course was beautiful. The volunteers were great. I couldn’t have asked for a better day.”

Complete results are here.

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