The 2016 edition of SAR's Sabino Canyon Sunset Run was run in beautiful weather, clear skies and mild temperatures. Over 360 people enjoyed this spectacular race and a great time was had by all. Friendly competition, food, music, camaraderie, a fantastic sunset and incredible moonlight, all at the magnificent Sabino Canyon. It just doesn't get any better than that.
The men's race was won by local athlete Kurt Michels, whose time of 41:28 was about 1.5 minutes faster than the second place finisher Adam Folts of Phoenix. Third place was taken by elite triathlete Jess Vondracek in sub-6 minute pace. The Men's Masters competition was dominated by Brian Hall who was 4th overall in an impressive time of 45:30. Brian was the winner in 2000 and has run the race every year and finished in the top ten since 1998. Second place was Ramon Billy, and third was newcomer Dave Dixon.
The women's overall award winner was Amy Cole who is becoming a regular winner at SAR races. Amy ran 6:26 pace, for a total time of 47:37. Second place went to Siouxsie Owen, and third was Lauren Reasoner. The top three ladies finished in order, #10, #11, and #12 overall. The Women's Masters competition was won by 2015 SAR Grand Prix winner Michelle Hawk in a time 54:33. Michelle pulled double-duty by volunteering at the race and winning the Master’s division. Second place went to the amazing Merry Dearmon.
For the first time, we had a timing mat at the half-way point. This allows the runners to compare their first (uphill) split to their second (downhill) split. Some interesting observations can be found. For example, Kurt Michels ran the second half at 5:12 pace! Siouxsie Owen had a great second half to take second place overall. Don Fallis and Warren Williamson were 2 of 7 runners that actually ran the uphill faster than the downhill.
As with every event that we do, the volunteers were the engine that made this event run and we want to thank each and every one who helped out. While we're sure we won't remember to list everyone here we will try: Steve Felde, Sheryl Felde, Laura Marshall, Georgia Ehlers, Gary Giese, Connie Lopez, Linda Pitney, Jennifer Keyes, Dari Duval, Bob Howard, Gerardo Guzman, Melanie Ramo, Marti Ackermann, Stephan Ackermann, Gary Parcher, Pam Hoyt ,Monica Bermudez, Don Taylor, Linda Whelan, Diane Harper, Lauren Reasoner, Joe Faulk, Doreen Davis, Michelle Hawk, Bob Arendt, Robin Gerard, Ben Childers, Joe Plassman and boys, Tom Gormley, Gina Nelson, Chris Fall, Nick Gonzales, Emily Maas, and Maureen Cunningham
We also owe a huge thank you to our main sponsors, Proactive Physical Therapy, Performance Footwear and Summit Hut. Performance and Summit Hut graciously provided gift certificates to all award winners, along with our new sponsor LaceLocker, who provided age group awards. ProActive PT helped runners out with KT Tape and free massages. Additional sponsors included Culligan Water, Risky Business, Papa Johns and Eegees.
A big thank you as well to the Forest Service for permitting us to hold this event such a fantastic location. Our race benefitted the Friends of Sabino Canyon, a group that does great things to improve the park for all of us.
A fantastic job was done by all, and we hope everyone enjoyed the experience.