Hard Times in the San Juans - Page 2
Photo courtesy of iRunFar.com
Behind Koerner, Gold Hill, Colorado’s Joe Grant, who finished fifth at last year’s Hardrock, ran the fourth-fastest time in course history, finishing Saturday in 25:06:30. Dakota Jones of Durango, Colorado—last year’s runner-up—finished third in 25:45:05.
The women’s race was a saga of mixed emotions for winner Darcy Africa. On the one hand, Africa of Boulder, Colorado, shook off her runner-up status from her previous two finishes at Hardrock when she finished in 29:09:47; on the other, she knew defending champion Diana Finkel, who had won Hardrock each of the last four years, had to drop out for that to happen.
“Basically, I was in second for 24 hours,” says Africa, who also won the Bighorn 100 Mile in June. “Then I got into Maggie Gulch aid station, about mile 85, and [Finkel] pops out of the tent.”
Africa says Finkel had decided to drop when she developed symptoms similar to those that plagued her in the late stages of the 2010 race, where she won but soon thereafter landed in the hospital with life-threatening kidney failure (see “Pacing Diana,” June 2011, Issue 73, available online here).
“It was kind of bittersweet,” Africa says. “You never want to see anybody going through something like that … I think she made a really smart decision but it was definitely sad.”
Rhonda Claridge of Telluride, Colorado, employed a home-course advantage to finish second behind Africa in 32:52:53. Darla Askew of Bend, Oregon, finished third in 33:52.
Complete Hardrock results can be found here.