The XTERRA Arizona Trail Series may be winding down, but there is no doubt this season has been on fire. While the weather in the Phoenix area on race mornings has been cool and dry, there have been some sizzling performances on the trails.
Last weekend, Art DeGraw continued his dominance in the series by winning the XTERRA McDowell Mountain 15-mile race by four-minutes with a time of 1:29:40. Nick Coury was the runner up with a time of 1:33:40 and Jacob Hernandez was third in 1:44:57.
On the women’s side, Jenny Easterberg crossed the line first with a time of 1:56:14. Megan Kupres was next in 2:01:02, and Micaela Leighton was third with a time of 2:07:53.
In the 7K race, 14-year old Jorge Corona and 15-year old Angel Tapia continued their rivalry, finishing in 31:01 and 31:06, respectively. Anthony Santacruze was third in 31:28. On the women’s side, XTERRA Trail Run veteran Stefanie Borg was the winner with a time of 34:08. She was followed by Danica Patrick, who finished in 34:23, and Carlie Hardy, who came through in 36:18.
Early in the year at the XTERRA White Tanks Trail Run, DeGraw secured the overall win by over seven minutes. Aila MacDonald (pictured below) won the women's field, finishing fourth overall and setting a new course record with a time of 1:34:14. In the 8k race, Jorge Corona and Angel Tapia again topped the field. Both finished in 28:33. Stefanie Borg took overall honors for the women with a time of 32:33.
On March 11th, the series has its finale at XTERRA Black Canyon, which is race director Shannon Lindner’s favorite course. It takes place north of Phoenix in Black Canyon City. The long course is a true point-to-point half marathon with shuttles taking you to the starting line. There will also be a 10K and a 6K fun run.
Lindner began the XTERRA Arizona Trail Run Series out of a desire to share her favorite trails with others. All of the races are located near Phoenix and Tempe and take advantage of the amazing parks in the region.
"Phoenix is surrounded by parks and beautiful trails," said Lindner. "And winter in Arizona is a great time to discover them. Although it's often dark in the early mornings when runners get to the race, I have coffee and usually a big fire to warm up around. It's really cozy."
Additionally, all of the races feature both a long and a short course, making the XTERRA lifestyle accessible to runners of all levels.
For more information on XTERRA Black Canyon, visit www.aztrailrace.com.
View race results at http://www.aztrailrace.com/results.