The USA 50 Mile Trail Championships was hosted by Nueces and race directors Joe and Joyce Prusaitis. Their races always have a festive and social atmosphere, from the day before the race until the morning after the race. Friends gather from all over to discuss apprehensions or excitement of the coming challenge beforehand, then reassemble post-race to share their experiences of the day. This race day began with a light frost and temperatures in the mid-30s, but warmed throughout the day into the mid-60s. The course consists of three 16.67 mile loops over hilly and very rocky terrain. Joe is often asked if he had extra rocks hauled in to add to the trails. The course has plenty of singletrack with sections of fireroad mixed in.


In the women’s race, Michele Yates (pictured above at the 2013 USA 100k Trail Champs) decided to get away in the darkness of the first hour of the race. She separated herself from the field and completed loop one in a time she questioned whether she could maintain. But maintain she did, in continuing to distance herself from all competitors and breaking her own course record by 32 minute. Her finishing time of 6:53.25 was good for 4th place overall. This was Michele’s second consecutive national title with her recent 100km win two months ago and third national title overall. She was also the defending 50 Mile champion from a year ago. Melanie Fryar and Pam Smith only ran together briefly, but were often close throughout the day. In the end Melanie pulled away slightly to claim runner up in 7:33.58. Pam Smith ran strong for third in 7:39.19. Both ladies have multiple podium finishes at competitive ultras and USATF Mountain, Ultra, Trail championships. Anabel Pearson was first Masters for the woman with a time of 9:16.31.

For the guys, there was a little more shuffling of positions with Paul Terranova breaking away early to leave a chase pack to wonder if they’d ever see him again. That pack began to break up on the second loop with Jason Bryant leading Cody Moat to chase the ghost of Paul. Halfway through this loop the two brought Paul back into sight, though Paul pushed to distance himself from the chasers once more. The final loop proved to be the decisive one, with Cody overtaking Jason early on and finally running down Paul halfway through the last loop. Cody Moat claimed his second consecutive national title following the Trail Marathon title from the fall. Cody’s 6:26.03 time was also good for a new course record. Paul continued to run strong to take second in 6:32.10. Jason was able to hang on for 3rd in 6:46.09, making his tenth 3rd place finish at a USATF trail or ultra championship. Jason Bryant was also first male Masters to make his third consecutive Masters title since turning 40 this past August.

Top Female Results:                 Top Male Results:

1. Michele Yates 6:53.25         1. Cody Moat 6:26.03

2. Melanie Fryar 7:33.58        2. Paul Terranova 6:32.10

3. Pam Smith 7:39.19              3. Jason Bryant 6:46.09

Female Masters:                       Male Masters:

1. Anabel Pearson 9:16.31     1. Jason Bryant 6:46.09

2. Joni Moore 9:51.37             2. Jorge Cardenas 7:49.20

3. Jody Koehler 10:50.24        3. Dan Vega 7:56.39

Photos are available online: http://www.backprint.com/view_event.asp?PID=bp%18sA&EVENTID=113424

Results are posted here: http://www.tejastrails.com/docs/Nueces_res_2013.html

Full USATF Overall and Age Group Results will be posted soon at:

http://www.usatf.org/Events—Calendar/2013/USA-50-Mile-Trail-Championships.aspx