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Sunday, July 11, 2010 -- Richwood, WV / Summit Lake
Scenic Mountain Triathlon (iPO Event Id#: 12728)

2010: [Details] [Coverage] [Photos] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]

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Article and Photos by J.R. Petsko

Starting the morning off with a relaxing swim
Not many events out there can say they have lasted for 25 years! However the lovely mountain town of Richwood, WV has been able to do just that with this year's running of the Scenic Mountain Triathlon.

As President Reagan was taking his second oath of office, the wheels were in motions back in 1985 for the first of what has become a staple in the West Virginia triathlon scene.

The morning of the event the skies were already bright, clear and welcoming to participants showing up for the event. The mountain lake called Summit Lake would be the first test for the racers as they took part in a 1/2-mile open water swim to begin their day. As the racers took off it was a sight to behold. Like a bunch of fish trying to escape a shark in the ocean.

First out of the water for the solo competitors was Columbus, OH resident Matthew Dixon as he threw down the third fastest swim of the day completing it in only ten minutes and ten seconds.

Dixon was followed by Jason Schuerger of Kensington, MD, Mark Robbins of Charlottesville, VA, Andrew Cochran of Morgantown, WV and Bill Ulmer of Uniontown, PA. The top five males were all within a minute of each other after the swim and anything could happen.

Climbing Kennison Mountain to finish the bike leg
As the racers exited the transition area they were off for the bike leg of the race. The 17.1 mile road ride would take them from Summit Lake to the Cranberry Mountain Nature Center.

For the most part the course was fast and flat, but this is West Virginia. What would an event here be without a good hill climb? Toward the end of the bike leg racers had to tackle Kennison Mountain, a 3988ft peak that has an average grade of 9% over the climb. Ouch.

Robert Smith of Huntington, WV used his talents on the bike to move himself right up the leader board with a time of 50:53 on the bike, which was the fast ride of the day for any solo competitor.

Mark Robbins added to his great swim by coming in with the second fastest solo bike leg in 53:00 and kept himself poised to take the top spot. Andrew Cochran was the third solo off the bike in 53:01 followed by Matthew Dixon in 53:46. Kyle McCammon of Bridgeport, WV, a former Appalachian Road Race Series Champion used his cycling experience to turn in the fifth fastest solo time in 53:50.

Over on the women's side Amy Robbins of Charlottesville, VA was showing the others just why she has become such a power house every year at this event.

After the seventh fastest swim out of all solos on the day and a solid bike leg she found herself in familiar territory: out front. Annie Schuerger of Charleston, SC and Ginny Hotze of Asheville, NC were chasing their hardest to try and over take the defending champion.

Finishing the day of with a 10K run
It was all going to come down to the 6.2 mile run to determine who were going to be the champions of the 25th addition of the event. Just like on his bike ride Robert Smith was the fastest solo competitor. Smith used the two top efforts to move him from sixth to the winner on the day in a total time of 1:39:41.

Matthew Dixon was up front all day and found himself second overall in a total time of 1:46:06. Mark Robbins was third on the day with a time of 1:46:51 just seconds back of Dixon. Fourth for the men went to Jason Schuerger in 1:50:28 who used the run to move past Kyle McCammon who ended up fifth in 1:50:38 just 10 seconds behind.

For the women Amy Robbins was once again named champion. Robbins completed the run in the 10th fastest solo time of the day to make sure no other woman was going to catch her, crossing the finish line in 1:59:16.

Second went to Annie Schuerger in a great time of 2:01:21. Ginny Hotze was able to hold down the third overall spot finishing the event in a time of 2:09:08. Lindsey Adkins of Hurrican, WV took home fourth after making up some good ground on the run to finish in 2:12:49. Fifth was Lisa Richmond of Asheville, NC who finished in 2:15:05.

It was another great race put on by the folks in Richwood. With the success that this event has seen over the past 25 years I suspect it will be around for another 25!