Easton Nielson, a senior at Monticello High School, won the 6.2-mile race in a blistering pace of 35:47. Finishing second is Jens Brewer in 37:00, followed by fellow MHS cross country team members Eli Johnson in 37:36 and Everett Hatch in 37:51.
The remainder of the top ten includes Daniel Torres (37:59), Kyler LaRose (38:57), Cole Chamberlain (39:46), Taylor Francom (40:22), Steve Francom (40:57), and Jason Johnson, last year’s champion, in 41:14.
Twelve-year-old Jessica Walker was the top female finisher, covering the course in 42:57. She was followed by Katie Player in 45:03 and Bailey Goodwine in 49:32.
The course record of 35:04, set by Taylor Francom in 2008. The course record for women is 36:38, set by Macee Nielson in 2010.
Winners in the mens group up to age 16 are Cole Chamberlain (39:46), Derek Francom (41:39), and Kade Francom (41:56).
Winners in the mens group between age 17 and 40 are Everett Hatch (37:51), Daniel Torres (37:59), and Kyler LaRose (38:57).
Winners in the mens group age 41 and up are Steve Francom (40:57), Jason Johnson (41:14), and Robert Hatch (46:37).
Winners in the womens group up to age 31 are Cambria Welch (49:52), Ashley Hoggard (49:57), and Holly Simmons (52:27).
Winners in the womens group between age 30 and 39 are Becky Kirby (50:35), Rebecca Pincock (50:39) and Kristen Randall (55:18).
Winners in the womens group age 40 at up are Sherry O’Kelley (50:32), Michelle Adams (51:18), and BetteAnne Gilbert (56:18).
Nearly 130 people participated in the race, which begins at Newspaper Rock and finishes near the Dugout Ranch.
Under the direction of Mindy and Scott Saunders, sponsors of the annual event include the San Juan Record, High Altitude Communications, San Juan Pharmacy - Monticello, Inn at the Canyons, Schafer’s Auto, GetGo Imaging, Blue Mountain Foods, Young’s Machine, All-Star Tumbling, and Maverik.
Among the dozens of volunteers are Scott and Mindy Saunders, Bill and Lynda Boyle, Jenna LaRose, Scott Burton, Oliver Crane, Jeff Hunt, Anna Fredericks, Clint Moore, Bret Saunders, Taylor Harrison, Andrea Montgomery, Merri Allyson Platt, Jill Slack, Jessie Slack, Dantzel Crane and the LDS missionaries.
Organizations who offer support include the City of Monticello, San Juan County Visitor Services, Utah Department of Transportation, San Juan County Fair, Utah Highway Patrol, Dugout Ranch, San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, the Monticello Second Ward Boy Scouts and the Monticello High School Cross Country team.
Photos courtesy MoabActionShots.com