Like they’ve done since the early 1990s, the Southeast Road Runners have once again been burning up the trails around Juneau in hopes of ending the year atop the 2010 Empire Cup Standings.
Fifty-three runners in the 21 different age groups of the Empire Cup, sponsored by the Juneau Empire, were recognized at the Southeast Road Runners annual awards banquet Friday night at Douglas Island Pink and Chum.
Fred Triem, of the Men’s 60-and-older division, ran away with the top spot in the overall standings with 132 points, and Jim Ustasiewski (Men ages 45-49) and Eli Gregory (Boys ages 8-10) came in second and third overall with 109 and 106 points, respectively. The SERR also presented its newest award, the Guy Thibodeau Contributions to Running Award, to its namesake, Guy Thibodeau. The honor will be given out annually to a member of the Southeast Road Runners whose impact has greatly affected the club in a positive way.
Thibodeau, whose accomplishments as a coach for Juneau-Douglas High School and contributions as a member of Juneau’s running community earned him the recognition, was quick to deflect praise.
“It’s a nice honor. I always like not to have any special recognition because I want the kids to be recognized.”
Thibodeau said first and foremost, SERR President Tristan Knutson-Lombardo deserved to be thanked for all the contributions he’s made to the club in recent years. Knutson-Lombardo also ran for and coached with Thibodeau as a member of the Juneau-Douglas cross-country team.
“Tristan has been a great person to work with and he’s just a great organizer. He’s been a real spark behind the revival of the (SERR) over the last couple of years,” Thibodeau said. “You always wonder which kids will come back and be involved in our community here, and it’s just wonderful that we have them here coaching and doing things in the community.
“It’s just great to see that, to see people staying involved.”
Knutson-Lombardo said it’s been his goal to revamp the SERR during his time as club president.
“The nicest thing about the (SERR) is that it’s a really strong community-based organization. It’s great to recognize the efforts and achievements of the members because that’s what keeps people coming back and keeping people involved,” he said. “When I was a kid I remember the Empire Cup as a big motivator, so it’s nice to keep that tradition alive and build the next generation.
“I don’t know if it was because I was a kid, but it seemed like it used to be a bigger deal. I don’t know if that was more club-driven, but it’d be nice to build that back up again, especially in the youth divisions,” he continued. “It really gets kids out and motivated.”
As for the impact Thibodeau has made in Juneau, Knutson-Lombardo said it’s important to every member of the club, regardless of age.
“It’s just invaluable and I think it’s really important to acknowledge both the young achievers, as well as the ones who have been setting the groundwork and building the base for years,” he said. “It’s just a great testament to the community and the great runners here and their energy.”
The 2010 Empire Cup standings were determined by order of finish in designated races throughout the year. Runners must have participated in at least three Empire Cup Series races to qualify for the end-of-year awards, and points are awarded by finish. First-place finishers received 10 points, second gets nine and third place gets eight points, and it continues that way through ninth place (two points). Every other finisher receives one point in Empire Cup events.
The Southeast Road Runners’ 2011 race season begins June 22 with the East Glacier Trail Tangle, which is an Empire Cup Series race.
Men’s 2010 Empire Cup results:
(Name, total points)
Boys age 7 and younger — 1. William Robinson, 66; 2. Cory Martin, 28.
Boys ages 8-10 — 1. Eli Gregory, 106; 2. Matt Lessmeier, 88; 3. McKie Gregory, 64.
Boys ages 11-13 — 1. Riley Moser, 90; 2. Nicolas Wright, 84; 3. Michael Lohrey, 26.
Boys ages 14-18 — 1. Hugh Watts.
Men ages 19-29 — 1. Tristan Knutson-Lombardo, 54; 2. Sam Tilly, 37; 3. Marcelo Majorano, 29.
Men ages 30-34 — 1. Jeffrey Lacey, 32; 2. Norton Gregory, 27.
Men ages 35-39 — 1. Jeff Gregory, 74; 2. Bryan Hitchcock, 56.
Men ages 40-44 — 1. Dan Robinson, 76; 2. Rich Sjoroos, 72; 3. John Wright, 67.
Men ages 45-49 — 1. Jim Ustasiewski, 109; 2. Scott May, 68; 3. Zane Clark, 56.
Men ages 50-54 — 1. Guy Crockroft, 40; 2. Jim Calvin, 38; 3. Brian Ewing, 36.
Men ages 55-59 — 1. James Beedle, 92; 2. John Kern, 64; 3. Jim Marcotte, 50.
Men ages 60 and older — 1. Fred Triem, 132; 2. Reed Stoops, 56; 3. Eric Twelker, 50.
Women’s 2010 Empire Cup results:
(Name, total points)
Girls age 7 and younger — 1. Meredith Fritsch, 57; 2. Katherine Fritsch, 53, 3. Mallory Welling, 22.
Girls ages 8-10 — 1. Michaela Bentley, 37.
Girls ages 11-13 — 1. Georgia Robinson, 58, 2. Naomi Welling, 30.
Women ages 19-29 — 1. Mary Schlosser, 72; 2. Kathryn Maynard, 40; 3. Michael Kohan, 29.
Women ages 30-34 — 1. Carrie Bohan, 54; 2. Liz Gifford, 39; 3. Susie Frenzel, 38.
Women ages 35-39 — 1. Christy Terry, 69; 2. Jennifer Watson, 37; 3. Tyra Smith-MacKinnon, 25.
Women ages 45-49 — 1. Sara Raster, 35; 2. Terri Calvin, 30; 3. Jamie Bursell, 28.
Women ages 50-54 — 1. Sherry Tamone, 42; 2. Susan Pollard, 37.
Women ages 55-59 — 1. Janeann Twelker, 40; 2. Leslie Daugherty, 36.