Relay team looking sharp for Trail of ’98

The cleverly named, newly formed Team Scarecrow was hoping to put the fright in Anchorage's Skinny Raven: Take No Prisoners at this month's Klondike Trail of '98 International Road Relay.

The cleverly named, newly formed Team Scarecrow was hoping to put the fright in Anchorage’s Skinny Raven: Take No Prisoners at this month’s Klondike Trail of ‘98 International Road Relay. But they might not get their chance – at least not against that specific team.

As in past years, there will be a Skinny Raven corporate team in the relay, but the longtime reigning Skinny Raven: Take No Prisoners team, which has won the open men’s relay event for the last seven years, will be absent from the race.

“It’s been a while since I started doing the relay – years back – and I finally got sick of losing to Take No Prisoners,” said Scarecrow’s Rodney Hulstein. “So it is time to put all the Yukon runners together and see what we can do.”

Take No Prisoners, or not, some Scarecrows indicated they are a team to watch at the Klondike Road Relay, occupying most of the top-spots at the Chocolate Claim Pre-Skagway 10 Miler on Sunday morning, starting and ending in Rotary Park.

As one can infer from the name, the race is kind of a last chance for locals to get some competitive long-distance running in before the Klondike Relay, taking place September 10-11.

Taking first in the men’s division of the 10 Miler, which had a record turnout of 60 participants, was Hulstein, breaking the one-hour mark by 40 seconds. Last month Hulstein was the half-marathon, open men’s winner at the Yukon River Trail Marathon in Whitehorse.

“It’s a good race; it always gets people ready for the road relay,” he said. “It shows what they can do on the roads.”

Coming in behind Hulstein were Karl Blattman in second, Brent Langbakk in third and Andrew Brown in fifth – all members of Scarecrow. Teenager Logan Roots finished fourth.

As fast as Hulstein was on Sunday, he actually was not the first over the line. Coming in a couple minutes earlier was Ray Sabo. However, an accidental course violation – missing a small section of the course – left him disqualified.

“Ray went out like a bolt of lightning, and we stuck in a group while Ray kept on going,” said Hulstein. “He put a solid effort in, and even if he did the road part, he still would have probably came in ahead.”

Sabo, who is also on Scarecrow, was not the only one in the race to have issues with the course.

“I knew someone was behind me because I was getting directions,” said Cindy Freeman. “I didn’t know what way to go after the suspension bridge.”

Freeman was the top female runner in the 10 Miler, coming in at 1:18:11, just 13 seconds up from second place finisher Amy Riske.

“I just had a baby, so I took a year off and now I’m just getting back into it,” said Freedman.

For someone just returning to the sport, Freeman has been doing pretty well this summer. Not only did she finish third for women and sixth overall in the Mayo Marathon half distance event in June, Freeman and her husband Yanik finished first in the mixed two-person race at the River Trail Marathon.

“It was really good,” said Freeman of the 10 Miler. “I like the race because it’s mostly on hills and it’s a good workout, especially going through Miles Canyon – it’s so pretty too.”

10 Miler results

Males

1st Rodney Hulstein – 0:59:20

2nd Karl Blattman – 1:00:41

3rd Brent Langbakk – 1:00:46

4th Logan Roots – 1:03:11

5th Andrew Brown – 1:04:00

6th Bill Parry – 1:06:07

7th William Matiation – 1:06:12

8th Zeb Brown – 1:0623

9th Tom Ullyett – 1:06:58

10th Don White – 1:11:30

Female

1st Cindy Freeman – 1:18:11

2nd Amy Riske – 1:18:24

3rd Janet Clarke – 1:18:46

4th Michelle Christensen – 1:19:46

5th Janice Hall – 1:23:35

6th Pam Taylor – 1:24:50

7th Jeanette Gallant – 1:24:51

8th Piia Kukka – 1:25:12

9th Angela Sabo – 1:26:34

10th Brenda Dion – 1:26:49

Walkers

1st Ruth Hall – 1:59:29

2nd Bonnie Love – 2:00:05

3rd Susan Dennehy – 2:07:13

4th Catherine Simpson – 2:08:51

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com