A wrong turn for several runners could not spoil a strong turnout and beautiful weather for the 45th annual Race Thru the Redwoods 10-kilometer run last weekend.
Scotts Valley’s Nick Heath, 16, won the 10-kilometer race in 40 minutes, 30 seconds. He was followed by Rodolfo Tovar, 32, of Salinas in 41:15 and 15-year-old John Ross of Scotts Valley (41:44). Sean Curry, 45, of Salinas (41:56) and Brent Wood, 28, of Tempe, Ariz. finished fourth and fifth respectively in the Sunday, Aug. 18 race.
Heath, a Scotts Valley High School junior, finished fourth in 2012, thus improving his finishing position.
“This was my favorite (race) so far,” said Valoree Mills, one of the organizers from the Felton Business Association. “Seeing the kids run just made my heart sing.”
The children’s 1-mile fun-run featured 132 participants from 3 to 12 years old. The fun run was won by Chris Anderson, 12, of Santa Cruz in 5:57, followed by Jasmine Safarians, 12 of Pleasant Hill in 6:42 and Ryan Gomez, 9, of Scotts Valley in 6:53. Ten-year-old Tanner Wallace of Boulder Creek (6:56) and Daniel Cardenas, 11, of Ben Lomond (7:00) rounded out the top five.
The first woman to cross the finish line was Chen Lo, 30, of Downey who took 21st overall. The top valley woman was Lyndsay McKeever, 24, of Felton in 50:26 and 69th overall.
There was a bit of confusion during the 10-kilomter race as a volunteer along the course accidentally directed the top 20 runners past the entrance to a 1-mile loop on a maintenance road near the beginning of race that is needed to make the race a full 10-kilometers. All but the top three runners at the time were quickly turned around to resume the correct course, according to race director Jennifer Caro.
“I talked to a couple of guys who were turned around and they lost about 30 seconds,” Caro said.
The lead three runners continued along the course, finishing the race in 5 miles, rather than 6.
“The volunteer wasn’t informed,” said Caro. “Since it was our guy, I took full responsibility.”
The three 5-mile finishers, Zacharias Martinez, 15, of Marin; Nick Sherrell, 20 of Ben Lomond; and Lewis Anderson, 32, of Salinas, were understanding of what happened. Race organizers awarded them medals and refunded their race entry fees and offered free entry into the 2014 race.
“People understand that this is a fun race, it is not a precursor to get into the Boston Marathon,” Caro said.
Runners were invited to eat at a pancake breakfast put on by the Felton Fire Team following the race. Race volunteers included the San Lorenzo Valley High School cross country team, the Scotts Valley High School Girls Soccer team and several members of the Santa Cruz Track Club.
A total of 463 participants completed the 10-kilomter race, down from 570 in 2012. However, participation in the kids mile jumped from 108 to 132.
For complete results, visit www.racethrutheredwoods.com