They say “Think global, act local,” and the same can be applied with racing.
After having raced all over the globe from Mungyeong, South Korea to the LA Olympic trials, to Doha, Qatar and Eugene, Oregon; many of our runners have been enjoying the local racing scene right here in Colorado Springs! While qualifying for USA Championships and International races is the big goal for many of our runners, we’re also so proud to call Colorado Springs our home and have enjoyed the hometown crowds and high-level competition.
Earlier this year in April, Matt Williams strayed away from his recent road racing success to test his strength on the trails. He ran the Cheyenne Mountain Trail Race 25k and finished 2nd in 1:49:52 amidst snowy conditions.
In May, Adrian Neal won the women’s race at the Take 5 in the Garden on a beautiful hilly course surrounded by the majestic red rocks of the Garden of the Gods. This was her second race of the Grand Prix race series this year after finishing 3rd in the St. Patrick’s Day 5k.
“We have such a great running community here in Colorado Springs and it’s been really fun to re-connect with people that I hadn’t been able to see as often when I was racing out of state,” says Adrian.
On June 11th we had Ben Payne and Adrian Neal race the Garden of the God’s 10-Miler. Ben was 5th in 53:23, and Adrian Neal was 4th in the women’s race with a 1:07.42.
This past Sunday, we headed over to Bear Creek Park for the Summer Roundup. Just six days after the birth of his first son, Ben decided to hop in this fun and challenging local trail race and ended up winning with ease. Chris Rego finished third overall, and Adrian came in 1st for the women’s title.
Even after racing and training all over the world, the team agrees that there’s no place quite like racing in Colorado springs. “There’s no better active running community,” says Ben. “In every season I’m amazed at the number of dedicated runners training on the Santa Fe trail, pushing up the incline, or tackling the trails in Garden of the Gods and Red Rocks.”
Up next we have Ben Payne and Matt Williams running the Barr Trail Mountain race on July 16th. Then on August 10th we will have a big crew racing the new Colorado Springs Community Mile, which will take place in between the Colorado Classic Women’s and Men’s Pro Cycling races. Runners will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to race in front of tens of thousands of spectators and finish under the banner of the Pro Cyclists!
Ben, Matt and Adrian are also racing the Pikes Peak Ascent (13.32 miles, 7,815′ straight up…no big deal!) Both Ben and Adrian are in the running for the Triple Crown of Running Series after having run the Garden of the God’s 10M and Summer Roundup. We also have a new Pikes Peak Elite addition, Dillan Webb, racing the Leadville 100-mile trail run on August 19th. This is his first year eligible to run the race because of the minimum age standards, and Dillan hopes to become the youngest finisher in race history!
So if you’re local to the Colorado Springs area, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the Pikes Peak Elite racing team. We recently revamped our logo, so keep an eye out for our new uniforms! Until then, follow us along our journey @Pikespeakelite and remember, #racelocal!