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Saturday, May 27, 2000 -- Bluefield, WV
Bluefield Regional Med Ctr / Mtn Festival Races
Story and photos by George Gannon

[Details] [Coverage] [Overall Results] [Pic Set 1] [Pic Set 2] [Pic Set 3]
[1999 Coverage]

Bluefield 10/5K
Taking off in Bluefield
In years past, the highlight of the Mountain Festival was mud wrestling. Women's mud wrestling. To some, that might be more exciting than the Bluefield Regional Medical Center Road Races.

Whomever those folks might be, they should have witnessed this year's race. Their might not have been any mud flinging, but their were plenty of speedy runners and grueling hills.

The 10K and 5K combined race is on an out-and-back course that weaves through the streets of scenic downtown Bluefield. With a few nasty hills and an overall rolling track; it's a challenging course and does not let anyone get off easy.

Bluefield 10/5K
Nick Whited takes the win
Easing his way to the finish line before any one else, Nick Whitehead(19:22) conquered a "real tough" last mile to take top honors in the 5K. Whitehead, who's race strategy was to get "out hard and hold on," just did hold on to edge out a strong finish by Dale Carter(19:24). Paul Bishop(19:43) finished third overall.

For the ladies, Shannon Baker(22:59) took over at the 5K turn-around and never looked back. Not even a final mile she described as a "total killer" was going to stop her from the number one position. Michelle Prendal(23:24), also posting strong numbers, took the number two spot. Carter Arey(24:20) from Charlotte, North Carolina, grabbed the number three spot.

Bluefield 10/5K
Shannon Baker strides to the finish
In the 10K, Richard Ferguson(35:55), no stranger to this race, took the number one spot. George Angelos(36:16) fought of a nagging calf injury to grab the number two spot. According to one bystander, Angelos hopped for half a mile before he really turned it on. Aaron Kaylor(38:75) rounded out the top three.

Also travelling ten kilometers, Charity McDaniel(46:49), who was using this race to practice for a half-marathon, took top honors. Donna Akers(54:36) and Ann Thompson(56:12) took two and three respectively.

It was great race that finished just before the rains that soaked most of the weekend. The trophies were presented and distributed by the lovely Miss Mountain Festival herself. All the winners had good things to say about the race and they hope it continues for years to come.