Baldwin and Shearer Close SoCal Series on Win Streaks

More than 700 run at season finale at Malibu Creek

The XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series came to a close last weekend for the 2012-13 season, and at least two runners are wishing it could go on longer.

Patrick Baldwin and Maggie Shearer continued their impressive late-season runs in the SoCal Series by taking top overall honors at the XTERRA Malibu Creek Trail Run. The event was completed on May 18 at Malibu Creek State Park, and more than 700 runners participated.

Patrick BaldwinBaldwin took top overall honors, completing the 22-kilometer course in 1 hour, 39 minutes, 1 second. Baldwin won four of the seven races in the series, including the last three.

(Patrick Baldwin pictured,

“Most of all, I credit consistent training through the years, six days a week,” he said. “I’ve gotten to the point, as many of us do, that it is far harder to take a day off than to get a training session in!  I’ve also been running and racing for quite a few years now; experience is key.  I guess it also helps I live in a very hilly area, there are no easy runs!”

Baldwin works as a landscape architect in Encinitas, Calif. He said the Malibu Creek Trail Run was probably the toughest race of the seven in the series.

“The course contains the longest climb and descent, and it’s the longest race in the SoCal series so your legs definitely remember this one,” he said.  “I am still hobbling around two days after the race!”

A year ago at this same race, Baldwin got passed for the lead midway through the course and finished in second place. He relied on that experience this time and maintained his pace throughout to finish with a relatively comfortable victory. “I knew this year to keep the focus, not necessarily go harder, but stay on a consistent pace,” he said.

Nils Arend from Venice Beach placed second in 1:41:40, and Greg Abrams from Newbury Park was third in 1:44:52.

Maggie Shearer placed 14th overall and was the first female. Like Baldwin, she won four of the seven races in the SoCal Series, including the last three.

“That’s a tough course,” she said. “You really need to dig deep for the entire 14 miles.  I raced Malibu Creek last year, but I can’t say it was any easier the second time around. The climbs are unrelenting, but the view is breathtaking so it’s well worth the effort.”

Because of the numerous climbs and descents, and twists and turns, Shearer said she was never quite sure how far ahead she was of the other females. “I ran with the men from the start, but in this particular race there are so many climbs and descents that by mile 7 most racers are well spread out,” she said.

Shearer, who works as a pharmaceutical representative in Trabuco Canyon, Calif., finished with a time of 1:54:55. Anissa Faulkner was second in 1:58:07, and Joanne Dow was third in 2:00:45.

In addition to the 22K long course, there was also a 6K short course. Jonathan Toker and Amy Shertzer took top honors in the 6K.


The Malibu Creek Trail Run was the seventh, and final, event of the 2012-13 XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series. Next up for many of the SoCal Runners is the 2013 XTERRA Trail Run National Championship, which is scheduled for September 22 at Ogden, Utah.

Baldwin and Shearer said they are both trying to arrange plans to enter the XTERRA Trail Run Nationals in Utah.

“My family and I have a busy summer/fall ahead, however, I am planning on racing in Utah for XTERRA Nationals,” Shearer said. “I’m looking forward to racing against some incredibly talented runners in Utah!”

The 2013-14 season for the XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series is scheduled to begin in October, and online registration is already open. To register for a race in the series, or to learn more about it, please visit

About the XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series
The XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series is open to runners of all ages and skill levels. In the 2012-13 season, there are seven races available for runners, with the courses ranging in length from 5 kilometers to 22 kilometers. The top runners in every age group will receive points after each race that will count toward the overall series standings. At the conclusion of the series, each age-group champion will receive a free entry to represent Southern California at the 2013 XTERRA Trail Run National Championship in Utah. SoCal is one of 16 regions hosting an XTERRA Trail Run Series. The others are Alabama, Arizona, Atlantic, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Pocono, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington.

Alabama Series Champions are Crowned for 2012-13 Season

Age-group winners range in age from 13 to 73

The XTERRA Alabama Trail Run Series truly was for runners of all ages during the 2012-13 season. A look at the list of age-group champions for the season is proof enough.

XTERRA Oak Mountain Trail Run StartTwenty-one runners earned age-group championships for the XTERRA Alabama Trail Run Series, and they ranged from 13-year-old Korey Shively from Madison, Alabama, to 73-year-old Bruce Greene from Anniston, Alabama.

Shively won the male 10-14 age division; Jase Bell, also from Madison, won the male 15-19 age division. They are both students at James Clemens High School, and members of the cross country and track teams.

The 2012-13 XTERRA Alabama Trail Run Series featured six races, spread over eight months. The series concluded last weekend with nearly 600 runners participating in the XTERRA Oak Mountain Trail Runs at Oak Mountain State Park in Pelham, Alabama.

Nineteen of the 21 age-group champions for 2013 are from the state of Alabama. One is from Mississippi, and one is from Georgia.

Lynne Leonard from Lucedale, Mississippi, won the female 50-54 age division for the second consecutive season.

Rick Rantamaki from Dacula, Georgia, won the male 45-49 age division. Last year, he won an age-group championship in the XTERRA Georgia Trail Run Series. He competed in both the Alabama and Georgia Series this year.

Every age-group champion from the Alabama Series will receive a free entry to the 2013 XTERRA Trail Run National Championship, which is scheduled for September 22 at Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah.

The 2013-14 XTERRA Alabama Trail Run Series is scheduled to begin in September. Runners of all ages and skill levels can enter the races. For more information, please or

Here is the list of 2012-13 XTERRA Alabama Trail Run Series champions:


Age Group Name Age Hometown State
Female 20-24 Ali Edwards 22 Birmingham AL
Female 25-29 Elaina Pribyl 26 Gardendale AL
Female 30-34 Sasha Robertson 34 Anniston AL
Female 35-39 Kristie Northern 36 Trussville AL
Female 40-44 Sunny Workman 42 Pelham AL
Female 45-49 Cindy Jackson 48 Huntsville AL
Female 50-54 Lynne Leonard* 50 Lucedale MS
Female 60-64 Luvern Blackwood 62 Trafford AL
Male 10-14 Korey Shively 13 Madison AL
Male 15-19 Jase Bell 15 Madison AL
Male 20-24 Steven Romo 21 Dothan AL
Male 25-29 David Wall 26 Madison AL
Male 30-34 William Paulk 32 Birmingham AL
Male 35-39 Jay Crosby 39 Madison AL
Male 40-44 Matt Brown 41 Boaz AL
Male 45-49 Rick Rantamaki 46 Dacula GA
Male 50-54 Matt Holdbrooks 50 Trussville AL
Male 55-59 Mark Richey 57 Gadsden AL
Male 60-64 James Durant 64 Hoover AL
Male 65-69 Don Catchings 66 Oxford AL
Male 70-74 Bruce Greene 73 Anniston AL
*Repeat champion from 2012

Mader, Daily win XTERRA Oak Mtn Marathon

Complete Results / Photo Gallery

Brandon MaderOak Mountain State Park, Pelham, AL – Brandon Mader from Huntsville, Alabama and Ashley Daily of Tallahassee, Florida won the XTERRA Oak Mountain 43K trail run at Oak Mountain State Park in Shelby County, Alabama in 3:01:34 and 3:53:28, respectively, whileJosiah Middaugh and Lesley Paterson took the half-marathon title’s less than 24 hours after winning yesterday’s XTERRA Southeast Championship triathlon race here at Oak Mountain.

In the men’s marathon race Mader took the lead half-mile in as soon as the course hit the trails and never looked back, posting 6:51 miles and finishing nearly 20 minutes ahead of runner-up Dink Taylor.

The win was a rejuvenating one for Mader, who separated the hamstring from his tendon in December and hadn’t started running again until late February. It was also his first-time back on a start line since running at the Boston Marathon a little over a month ago.

“The last couple of weeks of training I thought about Boston a lot, and I really made an effort to show that the tragedy shouldn’t change the way you live.  I was excited to get out here, get on the line and run, take a step away from the tragedy that happened out there,” said Mader, who ran nearly as fast on the trails today as he did in Boston where he clocked a 2:53.

The 28-year-old medical physicist is a veteran at Oak Mountain, where XTERRA has hosted a dozen runs over the past few years.

Ashley Daily“I love Oak Mountain. There’s a good balance to the trails with sections of rocks, roots, turns, and then other sections you can really relax and run fast, get in a rhythm and enjoy the trails.  Just a big mix of different terrains,” explained Mader.  “Today the trails were great, soft, good footing, and foggy on Double Oak trail section, kind of mystic.  It was humid though, so I am surprised I ran as fast as I did.  I’m happy.”

For Daily (pictured right) it’s her first-ever trail marathon, although the grad student at Florida State University has a few 50K trail races in her resume.

“It was fun. I loved it,” said Daily.  “I’m going to defend my dissertation in a month, and can tell you that dissertating is like running. It’s arduous, hard, and eventually it’s over.”

Middaugh, PatersonWhile Paterson ran away with the women’s 20K race, finishing nearly seven-minutes ahead of runner up Ali Edwards, the men’s race was close the whole way as former Olympian Roberto Mandje – the XTERRA Lake Las Vegas half-marathon champ, traded places with Josiah Middaugh from start-to-finish.

Mandje got the lead early but got tripped-up working through some of the 10K traffic and fell, then went down the wrong path briefly which cost him some precious seconds as the race was decided by just seven seconds.

“That’s racing.  Can’t take anything away from Josiah,” said the humble Mandje.  “Overall it was a beautiful course.  Well marked, not too rutty.  It was undulating but you could see where you were going.  The course definitely lived up to its notoriety.”

Middaugh used the same strengths that make him so lethal in triathlon, his climbing skills, to make just enough time on Mandje to take the win.“

“I tried to put a gap on the hills.  The hills were short, but there were enough little ups that I could sprint every little hill, kinda like mountain biking.  Basically did 30 sprints, was able to put maybe 10 seconds on him, but on the road he almost got me.”

Charlie Epperson from Guam and Lori Goldweber from Birmingham won the 10K, while Eric Johnson and Gwen Howard won the 5K.

More than 600 runners from across the nation took part in the XTERRA Oak Mountain trail runs on a beautiful, nice and cool morning at the park.

The 2013 XTERRA Southeast Championship was presented by Paul Mitchell and AVIA. Sponsors included Shelby County Tourism, Muscle Milk, XTERRA Wetsuits, PowerBar, Gatorade, XTERRA Fitness, Zorrel, Rudy Project, LifeProof, FootBalance, the Utah Sports Commission, Choice Hotels, Shelby County Reporter, and the Live More card.

Turkey Track Trail Run Now Part of XTERRA Colorado Series

Event will feature full-marathon and half-marathon courses

A new race is coming to the XTERRA Colorado Trail Run Series, and it will have runners gobbling for more.

Turkey TrackThe XTERRA Turkey Track Trail Run will make its debut on June 15 at the Turkey Springs Trail System in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. The event will feature both a full-marathon course and a half-marathon course, and it is open to runners of all ages and skill levels, from all states.

The trails at Turkey Springs offer spectacular views, as well as Colorado’s famous altitude. The course starts at 7,200 feet above sea level, and takes runners on rolling elevations up to 8,500 feet.

The event – and the trail system – is named such because of the abundance of wild turkeys in the area. Some can even be seen along the course.

The community of Pagosa Springs has already embraced the event, and several organizations will be providing volunteer services at the race – including an ATV club, a women’s roller derby team, and high school cross country teams.

The event will serve as a benefit for GECKO (Give Every Child Knowledge of the Outdoors), so every runner who enters will be contributing to the development of youth activities in the area. Some of the children in the GECKO organization helped create the prize medals for the event.

The XTERRA Turkey Track Trail Run will be the third of five races in the 2013 XTERRA Colorado Trail Run Series. The top age-group finishers in both the full-marathon and half-marathon courses will receive points toward the overall standings of the series.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER for the race or please visit  to learn more about it.

Introducing the XTERRA Utah Trail Run Series

First two races coming up on June 1 and June 8

Runners in the Beehive State can start the buzz – the inaugural XTERRA Utah Trail Run Series is about to begin.

Utah Series RunnersUtah has been home to the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship since 2011, but 2013 marks the first year that a complete series will be staged in Utah.

Three races are on the 2013 schedule, with the season-opener set for June 1. The XTERRA Jordanelle Trail Run will be the opening race, and it will take place at the picturesque Jordanelle State Park near Park City, Utah.

There will not be much time to rest and recover after the opener, as the second race in the series will take place on June 8 – the XTERRA Moab Trail Run at Moab, Utah.

The season finale will be the XTERRA Wolf Mountain Trail Run at Ogden, Utah, on July 13.

“The popularity of trail racing in Utah is increasing,” Utah Series director Mac McCluskey said. “I see the number increasing on the trails during my own training runs and participation in local events has been increasing.”

Utah is renowned for its breathtaking trails, and the races in the series are no exception. The first race will take runners to the picturesque Jordanelle State Park, which offers rolling terrain and scenic views – all at elevations above 6,000 feet.

The second race features a short, but memorable, course at Moab, Utah. The 5K trail is mostly single track, and takes runners to Faux Falls and along Ken’s Lake.

The third race will take place at Wolf Mountain ski resort in Ogden, so the climbs – and views – are sure to be epic.

Each race in the series is open to runners of all ages and skill levels, from Utah and other states.

The XTERRA Utah Trail Run Series should serve as a perfect warm-up for the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship, which is held every September at the Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah.

“If anyone were training for Nationals, this would be the place to do it,” McCluskey said. “With the elevation change and hilly terrain that these events offer, it is a positive comparison to the course at Nationals. They could not be any more similar without actually being Snowbasin, and should provide excellent training opportunities for anyone considering that race in September.”

Points will be awarded to the top runners in each age group at every race in the Utah Series, and standings will be updated throughout the season. At the conclusion of the series, each age-group champion will receive a free entry to represent Utah at the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship.

To register for a race in the Utah Series, or to learn more about it, please or

Florida Series Champions for 2013

XTERRA Florida Trail Run SeriesThe XTERRA Florida Trail Run Series concluded its 2012-13 season on April 28. The series featured three races, with an average of more than 300 runners per event.

Three runners went undefeated in their respective age divisions for the season: Jessica Wagner (female 40-44), Eric Koenig (male 20-24) and Adam Smehyl (male 30-34).

Wagner and Koenig also went undefeated overall, as they were the top overall female and male, respectively, at each race in the series.

Every age group champion from the Florida Series will receive a free entry to the 2013 XTERRA Trail Run National Championship at Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah, in September.

Here is the list of 2013 XTERRA Florida Series champions:

Female 25-29 Sandra Batassa 29 Tampa FL
Female 30-34 Laura Kelly 32 Tampa FL
Female 35-39 Erin Volz 36 Orlando FL
Female 40-44 Jessica Wagner 41 Windermere FL
Female 45-49 Adriana Nieves 47 Seminole FL
Female 50-54 Peggy Brinkley* 52 Seminole FL

Male 20-24 Eric Koenig 24 Lutz FL
Male 25-29 Eric Law 25 Clearwater FL
Male 30-34 Adam Smehyl 34 Sebring FL
Male 35-39 Ray Smith* 36 St. Petersburg FL
Male 40-44 Greg Fann 43 Clearwater FL
Male 45-49 Zvanko Smlatic 49 Sarasota FL
Male 50-54 Mark Maxwell 50 Tampa FL
Male 55-59 Rance Blair 57 Tampa FL
Male 60-64 Thomas Hutson 61 Houston TX
Male 65-69 John Mitchell 65 Altamonte Springs FL

*Repeat champion from 2012

Pocono Series is Underway for 2013

The ever-growing XTERRA Pocono Trail Run Series started its 2013 season last weekend with the XTERRA Big Pocono Trail Run at Tannersville, Pennsylvania.

Big Pocono It was the first of five races in the series, and the next four will come up quickly. All of the races in the Pocono Series are scheduled in the months of May and June. The next race in the series will be the XTERRA Seven Tubs Trail Run at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on May 18.

To register for a race in the series, or learn more about it, please visit

Here is a recap of the Big Pocono Trail Run from race director Rich Pais:

The Wendy’s Pocono XTERRA  race series started with a record field of 57 runners from five states tackling 3.7 miles of rocky trails and steep inclines along the top of Camelback Mountain.  With a long winter and cold spring in the east, many runners still had some tender feet and ankles when they tackled the glaciated rocks atop the mountain.  James Ryan, the 2012 Big Pocono  and Pocono Series winner, pulled out of the race after two miles.  “My ankles took a pounding sprinting up and down those rocks” said Ryan. “I am saving myself for the Seven Tubs and the other races in the series.”

Because the course is “only” 3.7 miles, the speed and energy the runners carry is much greater than longer distance trail runs.  When you combine steep climbs, boulder fields, and open trails, the strategic challenges are significant.  However, the conditions were no problem for 44-year old trail run expert George Fair, who blistered the course in 24:12 beating Ryan’s 2012 time by almost 2:00 minutes.  “That’s a great course for me, I love the steeps and climbing,” Fair said.  Jackie Shokey was the first female across the tape in 31:01.  Jackie won last year’s race in 31:04 and also won the Pocono Series.

There were five rookie trail runners in the race including 43-year-old Jennifer Mayo.  “I had no idea what to expect.  And to tell the truth I was a little intimidated.  But this is sooo much fun I am definitely signing up for all the races in the series,” said Mayo.

“In fact,” said Rich Pais, Race Director for the Pocono Series,  “we have had seven people who raced today sign up for all five races in the series.”  The Pocono Series offers runners a chance to sign up for all five races for the discount price of $100.

The next race in the series is the Seven Tubs.  “The shortest and most challenging in the series” says Pais.  “Six stream crossings, two of the steepest climbs anywhere in the east and a thundering downhill along a roaring stream. This is the favorite course in the series for most local runners”

Familiar Faces Win Florida Finale

The 2013 XTERRA Florida Trail Run Series came to a close with a familiar finish last month. Eric Koenig and Jessica Wagner capped their perfect seasons by taking top honors at the XTERRA Claw Trail Run on April 28 at Lithia, Florida.

Claw TapeThe XTERRA Florida Trail Run Series featured three races during the season, and Koenig and Wagner were the first overall runners at each race.

“I think the key to my success in the Florida trail series has been running relatively high mileage weeks, doing long and frequent runs on local and regional trails throughout the year, training on or near the trails where the races took place, having a lot of race experience, and confidence,” Koenig said.

Wagner said of her success: “I think taking each run seriously by preparing my mind and body a few days before, running as hard as I could each day and I am very competitive!”

The Claw Trail Run featured more than 370 runners at Alafia State Park in Lithia, Florida. Koenig was the first overall finisher, completing the 10-mile course in 1 hour, 12 minutes, 3 seconds.

“We had great weather for the race – it was mid-60s to low-70s, crisp and sunny,” Koenig said. “The course, on the other hand, was tough! About four to five miles of the course wound off-trail. It was definitely the most challenging 10 mile race I’ve done.”

Koenig said the course offered several steep climbs and descents, and he fell on his chest during one of the steep downhills. Adding to the challenge, he said there were several sections of the course that traversed into overgrown brush, swamp forest, and fields of tall grass.

He took the lead after the first two miles of the course, and stayed in front the rest of the way. Todd Lytle took second with a time of 1:17:14, and Zvonko Smlatic was third in 1:18:32.

Wagner was the first overall female with a time of 1:25:55. No other women were even close, as Wagner  finished more than 12 minutes ahead of the other top females.

“The course was amazing, fun and not very forgiving to say the least.. what a challenge!” she said. “There was not a dull moment in the course, and it was a beautiful morning for a run in the woods.”

Just like Koenig, Wagner said she fell during the race and suffered cuts and bruises on her legs. She also finished the race with blisters on her feet.

“The stream crossing at the beginning felt great at the time, cooling me down,” she said. “However, having wet shoes, I developed blisters on my arches and was in severe pain from about mile 3 until the end.  I contemplated quitting several times, but I just had to finish and endure the pain since I had finished so well in the last two XTERRA races.”


Richmond Trail Run is Open to Runners of All Ages

June 8 race will feature adventurous 21K and 10K courses

The XTERRA Richmond Trail Run has long been considered one of the most popular races on the entire XTERRA Trail Run circuit, and with good reason.

Ryan MiddletonA fun and challenging course, a festive summer crowd, and the city of Richmond itself all add up to make for a unique experience for all runners in the event.

This year’s XTERRA Richmond Trail Run is scheduled for June 8, and as always, it is open to runners of all ages and skill levels, from all states. The event will feature two courses – a 21-kilometer long course and a 10K course. Both courses start at Brown’s Island and weave through various landmarks, both man-made and natural, in and around the historic city of Richmond, Virginia.


“XTERRA is a great brand, and Richmond is fortunate to host such an event,” said Ryan Middleton, who won last year’s 21-kilometer long course. “Brown’s Island and Belle Isle are definitely popular places to be in Richmond during the summer. The location and timing of the event are perfect.”

Middleton said the 21K course is unique because it starts out on paved road, and then takes runners on a non-stop adventure that includes river crossings, boulder climbing, bridge crossings, and forest trails.

“The most memorable part of the course for me are the ‘Mayan Ruins’ stairway,” he said. “This is a brutal climb that is so steep that you are almost crawling to the top. The heart rate shoots through the roof at this point. It is definitely tough to recover from this portion.”

Middleton said the 21K course may be a bit tough for beginners, but the 10K course is doable for most runners. There is actually a section of the trail where the 21K and 10K courses overlap.

“The top 21K runners will be required to maneuver around some of the 10K runners,” he warned. “I would urge everyone to use common courtesy. Let a runner know that you are coming up behind them, and those that are asked to step aside should allow room to pass, and please do so quickly and politely.”

The top age-group runners from the 21K course will receive free entries to the 2013 XTERRA Trail Run World Championship at Hawaii in November.

The XTERRA Richmond Trail Run is held in conjunction with the XTERRA East Championship off-road triathlon, so many of the world’s best endurance athletes will be in the Richmond area for the weekend of June 8-9.