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Posted: April 30, 2009  :

(RWire) Athletics: Hafer, Coordt Dominate Windy Big Sur International Marathon

Reid, Somers Smith Pacific / USATF 5K champions

From Julie Armstrong

CARMEL, Calif. - (April 26, 2009) - A first time participant and a former race champion dominated the field Sunday at the 24th presentation of the Big Sur International Marathon. The challenging, hilly course was made even more difficult by 20-30 mph headwinds confronting runners throughout the morning. Nearly 10,000 participants completed the weekend's events that included the marathon, marathon relay, 21, 10.6 and 9 milers and a Pacific / USATF 5K Championship.

Ryan Hafer and Mary Coordt met the challenge of wind, hills, a cold temperature and the competition for uncontested wins. Hafer, a 22-year-old resident of Colorado Springs, CO, making his Big Sur debut, took the lead at the start and was never challenged. At 2 hours, 32 minutes, 17 seconds, he finished more than seven minutes ahead of Eric Bowles, 23, of Los Angeles (2:39:34). Edward Crowley, 27 of Flagstaff, AZ finished third in 2:40:14.

Completing a remarkable double marathon week, local standout Jesus Campos of King City finished fourth in 2:45:00. Only six days after a very strong showing in the 113th Boston Marathon, Campos scored his fifth consecutive top five at Big Sur. Rounding out this group was Alan Rozendaal, 38, of Portland, OR who ran 2:45:17. Scott Sneddon, a 46-year-old from Billings, MT, took the Masters crown with a time of 2:53:53, also good for 10th overall.

The women's race was also dominated by one runner from start to finish. Mary Coordt, 39, of Elk Grove, CA, took the lead at the start and cruised to an easy victory in 2:56:06. Coordt is now a two-time Big Sur champion having won the 21st presentation in 2006. Julia Mallon, a 30-year-old from Miami, FL, finished a strong second in 3:04:18. Mallon, originally from Santa Rosa and a standout runner at Stanford University, loved her first Big Sur experience, calling it her "new favorite marathon." Mallon's time is even more impressive in light of giving birth in January and only recently resuming serious training. Nancy Buselmeier, 25, of Buffalo, MN, finished third in 3:07:00.

Rounding out the top five females were Laura Turner, 36, of Santa Barbara, CA, placing fourth in 3:08:50 and Mary Jones, 38, of Ventura, CA, taking fifth (3:09:35). Susan Nuzum, a 42-year-old from Boulder, CO won the Masters championship in 3:17:14.

Two comments were prevalent among the runners, from the champions to the six hour finishers. First, was that the course is the most beautiful in the country and second, that "it was windy".

While marathoners made their way up Highway One, another 800 runners participated in the Big Sur 5K, with Phillip Reid, 23, of San Luis Obispo winning the Pacific Association / USATF division with a time of 15:15. He was followed by Duncan Weru, 25, of Santa Clara, CA (15:27) and Mike Styczynski, 26, of Folsom, CA (15:28).

The women's Open division saw veteran and 1996 Olympian Linda Somers Smith, 47, of Arroyo Grande, CA, winning in 17:45, followed by Magdalena Visser, 40, of San Francisco (18:04) and Nicole Campbell, 26, of Sunnyvale, CA (18:06).

Team Fluid Santa Cruz dominated the Marathon Relay with the frontrunner leading the full marathon pack through the first checkpoint station. Team Fluid finished at 2:34:40, crossing the finish line just two minutes behind marathon winner Ryan Hafer.

Race director Wally Kastner stated, "For a race of this magnitude and complexity, we executed a nearly perfect race today."

24th Big Sur International Marathon
Carmel, CA, Sunday, April 26, 2009

1) Ryan Hafer (CO), 2:32:17
2) Eric Bowles (CA), 2:39:34
3) Edward Crowley (AZ), 2:40:14

1) Mary Coordt (CA), 2:56:06
2) Julia Mallon (FL), 3:04:18
3) Nancy Buselmeier (MN), 3:07:00

Full race results can be found at:

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