Share |

Saturday, January 7, 2006 -- Fairmont, WV
Run to Read Half-Marathon (iPO Event Id#: 7184)
Story by Race Director, Jim Woolfitt

[Details] [Coverage] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]

Check out the race photos by Mark Offutt

Eighty-six runners, who braved temperatures in the mid 30's and braved a strong head wind on the "back" portion of the out-and-back course, competed in the first annual Run to Read Half-Marathon on January 7, 2006.

Jared Smith, a familiar face at the summer Run to Read Races, made the 2 and 1/2 hour drive north from Danville, WV, pay off with a first place finish in a time of 1:18:48. Dan Dygert, 1:20:34, lead a contingent of Pennsylvania runners with a second place finish. Runners from the Keystone State took 6 of the first 10 places. Seven states were represented. Qatar resident David Ayersman made this an international event with his finishing time of 1:45:29.

The Wapiti Runners, a youth running organization from the Elk River Valley (Kanawha County, WV) had six first time ever half-marathoners in this first ever event. Among their group were Chelsea Jarvis and Christine Azevedo, who took first and second female overall awards. Chelsea (1:42:50) and Christine (1:44:03) are teammates on the Capital High cross country team. 12 year old Luke Teel, the youngest finisher (1:47:39) is another Wapiti runner.

Ms. Parker Parker, who says "I train with Jeff Galloway's Atlanta group (250 +)", drove all night to make the noon start. She had planned to fly but said her 2 small dogs refused to get out of the car. A race volunteer started her car up routinely during the race to keep her pets warm.

Speaking of volunteers, several in particular are deserving of special mention: Mark and Sandy Offut, Bob and Becky Nichols, Jim Cummings and his family, Scott Finnell and his wife, Rob Steele and Emmy Woolfitt. Thanks also to the Mon River Trails Conservancy. There are other individuals and organizations who deserve credit, too.

Race director Jim Woolfitt has several items on his "to do" list for next year:

  • Get the park to give us a building in addition to the restrooms. The church coffeehouse was great & a short drive but a more convenient location is needed.

  • Make sure the water stops have cups. Several runners had to resort to drinking from gallon jugs "West Virgina style". We understand the Red Bull team was nearby & offered their product free of charge to thirsty runners.

  • Split up the 40-49 male age group or at least offer more awards for those runners. A few more awards will be posted for both ladies and gentleman next year.

  • Finalize the paperwork for course certification. Credit for this belongs to Jim Cummings, our very capable assistant director. Try to get split timers. This may be easier said than done.