Saturday, April 2, 2005 -- Clifftop - Babcock State Park, WV
Babcock Gristmill Grinder - MSTR #1 (iPO Event Id#: 6663)
Story and photos by Julie Black --- See Dan Lehmann's race report and results.
The Grinder, a 12-mile trek through the freshly cut rugged terrain of Babcock State Park, was a new addition to the 2nd year strong MSTR Series. Race Director, Donnie Hudspeth, is no stranger to organizing events of this caliber. Hudspeth also organizes the ANIMAL Gauley River Race, one of the premier extreme whitewater events in the country.
Racers ran downhill along a high-running Glade Creek, past the old gristmill, and onto Skyline Trail. The start of Mann's Creek Gorge Trail marked the halfway point. Though trails were muddy and riddled with puddles, and even creek crossings, the view was incredible from start to finish, especially along the Narrow Gauge Trail as told by Dan Lehmann.
Fourth overall, Annette Bednosky placed first for the women in 1 hour, 49 minutes, and 5 seconds. Mary Whitlock (2:08:10) placed second for the ladies with Sarah Sturgill (2:10:00), rounding it out in third, but placing first in her age group.
The overall general comment from many runners was that the park and course were astonishingly beautiful. With it's majestic views, mystical fog, and roaring creek, it's a wonder that a trail run such as this had not been done at Babcock before. Racer's enjoyed it so much that it's safe to say that it will stay on the MSTR Series schedule for the future.
About the WVMTR Club: The WV Mountain State Trail Running Club (WVMTR) has grown to over 120 members this year already. Dan Lehmann, the club's President, is a true trail lover. Lehmann doesn't just promote the runs, he's in every one of them. He writes race reports, takes great photos, works the registration booths, and even updates the club's web site, www.wvmtr.org. Visit these fine folks and sign up today to be a part of this wonderful trail running community.