This year, no one in our immediate family ran the NipMuck Trail Marathon, but many people in our extended family did. So, we hustled to Ashford early this morning for the start of this famed event. We watched the runners head out from Perry Hill Rd., and then we went over to where the Nipmuck Trail crosses Rt. 44 in Mansfield, which is the 6-mile turnaround.
We had fun hanging out with Ken Larson, (Coach) Kathy Manizza, and the Eastern Connecticut State University Women’s Cross Country Team. They were manning the aid station. I love that spot on the course as you run along the river. I got some fun photos of the runners emerging from the woods and then heading back.
I wish we could have spent a little more time helping out our Shenipsit Strider club mates, but alas, we were squeezing a lot into a short weekend. Kehr Davis was leading Sean Greaney at that point in the race. They were chased by one other runner and then there was a large chase pack led by Brett Stoeffler. I’ve battled with Brett in the past, notably in 2011 when he DNF’d after he sprained his ankle with five miles to go. He has some great NipMuck results on his resume, and today, he ran the smart pace that he always runs, caught up to Kehr, and passed her before the finish. It would have been great to see a woman win the overall title, but she had a stellar time and he is a deserving winner.
NipMuck was race number 10 in the 2nd annual Connecticut Blue-Blazed Trail Running Series. Only Bimbler’s Bluff 50K remains. NipMuck was also race number 14 in the New England Grand Tree Trail Running Series. Several races remain. The Monroe Trail Race is next on the list, this coming Sunday.
As always, NipMuck wouldn’t be possible without the great volunteers. Most, but not all are from the Shenipsit Striders. They should all be appreciated. NipMuck is a 32 year tradition.