Age Group races shaping up as Gold Country Grand Prix nears mid-point |

Age Group races shaping up as Gold Country Grand Prix nears mid-point

The Union Staff

In Nevada County, the months between April and November is considered running season with the Gold Country Grand Prix stretching 11 races across eight months to determine the best runners in the area.

Hundreds, and in the case of the Turkey Trot, thousands, of runners compete in the Grand Prix events. Many run for fun, some to support the cause for which the run is raising funds for and others run for valued grand prix points.

The Gold Country Grand Prix is currently four races into its season and currently in the middle of a 34-day break between races, with the next competition being the Freedom Run 5K set for July 4.

With the midpoint of the Grand Prix right around the corner it's time to break down some of the age group (AG) leaders and those right on their heels.

In the men's 70 and over AG it is a three horse race with Ron Gross leading the pack. Gross has three 10K wins this season through four races, giving him 30 points. Michael Airington is in second with 25 points and Darryl Beardall is in third place with 22 points.

In the women's 70 and over AG, Lynne Hurrell has a commanding lead with 37 points coming from three wins and a second place finish.

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For the men in the 60-69 AG, Michael Buzbee is the leader with 37 points. Buzbee's three wins and one second place finish put him on top of Drue Mathies by six points. Mathies has one first place finish, coming at the Harmony Run, and three second places so far this season.

In the women's 60-69 AG, Karen Henderson holds a slight edge over Terrie Horlick. 30-29. Henderson has three first place finishes, but Horlick is keeping it close with a first place finish, two second place finishes and a third place.

For the men in the 50-59 AG the standard is being set by Rob Taylor who has 40 points after winning every race so far this season. Steve Bond is the next closest with 27 points in the 50-59 AG.

In the women's 50-59 AG, which is one of the most competitive age groups, Inka Mims owns the lead with 34 points after two wins and two second place finishes, but Makie Ohler (last year's AG winner) is coming on fast with three straight wins for 30 points.

In the men's 40-49 AG, Sergio Higereda leads with a perfect score of 40, but Dave LaPlante isn't far behind with 30 points.

There is solid group of runners making up the leaderboard in the women's 40-49 AG as four competitors are within 10 points of each other. Stefanie Roberts leds the AG with 30 points, but Angela Heung (24 points), Christine Kirks (21 points) and Karen McMenomey (20 points) are all in the hunt.

Daniel Swartendruber sits a top the men's 30-39 AG with 30 points, holding just a two point edge over Scott Krason. Swartendruber has won all three races he has run this season, while Krason has amassed his points with with two first place finishes, a third place and a fifth place.

Marley Mueller holds the lead in the women's 30-39 AG with 30 points, but Melanie Marsico is closely behind with 27 points.

In the men's 19-29 AG it is a dead heat at the top as Divakar Pandit and Jonathan Palmer both have 20 points. Pandit has won the last two races in the series and Palmer has one win and a pair of third-place finishes this season.

Caitlin Oats leads the women's 19-29 AG with 27 points, coming from two wins and a second place finish. Stephanie Lewis is in second place with 21 points this season.

In the men's 15-18 AG, Devon Cloud has a firm hold with 40 points.

The women's 15-18 AG is a little more crowded with Bailey Shykowski leading with 20 points, Joy Castro-Wehr with 17 points and Hope Pelster with 15 points.

Davis Olsen leads the men's 11-14 AG with 30 points, but Joshua Fairchild hustling behind him with 24 points.

Isabelle Smith, 30 points, holds a big lead in the women's 11-14 AG

Max Wright is a top the men's 10 and under AG with 20 points, and Blue Bouck holds a two-point edge, 23-21, over Hannah Fairchild in the girls 10 and under AG.

For more on the Gold country Grand Prix visit

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