JACKSONVILLE — Five days after clearing a downed tree from the race course Grif Wilder enjoyed the fruits of his labor by claiming the overall title in the 10-kilometer Britt Woods Firehouse Run on Saturday.
Wilder completed the course in an adjusted time — the race is scored via the Dipsea handicap system, which accounts for age and gender — of 58 minutes, 48.13 seconds to finish ahead of runner up Sierra Brown (59:10.27) and Bob Julian Jr. (59:42.75).
Wilder, 56, started his run at 8:13 a.m. and Brown, the women’s runner up in this year’s Pear Blossom, began at 8:14, and Brown couldn’t overcome the one-minute head start.
“It was quite a competition,” said race director Doug Naversen, who founded the race 17 years ago.
Brown’s raw time of 45:10 was the best among the women runners, while Truett Bostwick, a 16-year-old South Medford High junior, had the best overall raw time (43:17) but had to settle for fifth place with the handicap scoring system.
Bob Julian Jr., 50, placed third in 59:42.75 and Elena Meyer, 54, fourth in 62:02.46. Sixty-one runners competed in the 10K race. Five of the top 10 placers were age 50 or over.
“We had a good field,” Naversen said. “I thought any one of eight or nine people could have won it.”
Wilder also stood out in the most recent Pear Blossom, placing second overall in the 5K and winning his age group (55-59) in the 10K. On Saturday, he ran with confidence on a course he knows well.
“Grif Wilder has been running the Brit Woods hills for many years,” Naversen said. “And as a matter of fact, there was a downed tree and on Monday he actually cut it out on his own. On Tuesday our crew took out the rocks and the roots and chalked the course, and when we got up there the tree was gone. Grif just took it out on his own volition, and little did we know he was going to win the race (Saturday).”
The youngest runner to compete Saturday was 9-year-old Lily Reid, who placed 27th in 75:14.10. The oldest competitor was 72-year-old Donna Hodge, who placed 55th in 1:42:39.84.
TOP 25 FINISHERS
1, Grif Wilder, 58:48.13; 2, Sierra Brown, 59:10.27; 3, Bob Julian Jr., 59:42.75; 4, Elena Meyer, 62:02.46; 5, Truett Bostwick, 62:17.03; 6, Kyle Carson, 64:09.68; 7, Kierra Huggins, 65:02.13; 9, Chuck Whiteley, 66:51.30; 10, David Jordan, 67:38:48.
11, Matthew Hageman, 68:11.53; 12, Rick Parsagian, 68:14.39; 13, Ronald Wright, 68:25.66; 14, Shari Eaton, 68:28.49; 15, Dilan Mathieu, 69:31.56; 16, Woody Disharoon, 69:47.44; 17, Doug Madsen, 69:56.19; 18, Jeffrey Stone, 70:40.85; 19, Charles Hodge, 71:28.59; 20, Tonya Clark, 71:32.84.
21, Benjamin Ralph, 73:08.08; 22, Willy Bruijns, 73:57.40; 23, Chris Redtfeldt, 74:30.46; 24, Bruce Theisen, 74:46.53; 25, Steven Carter, 75:02.36.