FAIRBANKS—Lex Treinen is getting faster and faster in the Chena River Run.
The Alaska Nanooks senior cross country and Nordic ski standout captured the 5-kilometer Chena River Run for the second straight year and lowered his time by five seconds in the process.
The women’s race was a battle of two former Equinox Marathon champions with Laura Brosius edging Jane LeBlond.
Treinen shaved five second off his time of a year ago as he turned in a time of 16 minutes on a beautiful morning for a jaunt from Woodriver Elementary School to the Princess Hotel.
“It was kind of amazing because I was completely nervous to the point where I wanted to puke before the race,” Treinen said after congratulating those who crossed the finish line right behind him.
Steve Chu finished second in 16:07, followed by Jason Walker, in 16:12, Devin McDowell in 16:14 and Ian MacDougall in 16:31.
It was one of the fastest races as the top 12 finishers were under 17 minutes.
Even though the race was faster, it was different than a year ago when Treinen surged into the lead at the 2-mile mark, then held off a late charge by Chu.
“It was a lot different than last year,” Treinen said. “This time, I was about 10 or 15 meters behind them at 2 miles and I caught them going up the hill.”
The hill is the bike bath leading up to the Parks Highway Overpass in the third mile.
“I made a little move on the downhill side and I think that may have caught them by surprise,” Treinen said.
Treinen also pointed out weather conditions were just about perfect for running.
“It was a shots and T-shirt race,” he said.
Other finishers under 17 minutes were Andrew Arnold in 16:34, Matt Dunlap in 16:35, Kenneth Brewer in 16:37, David Dyer in 16:38, Ben Nelson in 16:40; Chad Carroll in 16:54 and Erik Soederstroem in 16:55. Cody Priest just missed the mark in 17:03.
“Those young guys just keep getting faster,” said Carroll, an assistant track coach at Lathrop, who was more than happy with his performance. “Usually I’m able to pick those guys off one by one, but today I only caught one of them. It’s nice to see so many fast runners in a race.
Brosius won the women’s race in 19:06, with LeBlond crossing the finish line in 19:13.
“This was totally unexpected,” Brosius said. “When I saw Jane at the start I thought ‘oh no.’”
Brosius said she knew LeBlond was right behind her the entire race.
“I knew she was right on my shoulder the whole way,” Brosius said.
Brosius wasn’t nearly as nervous as Treinen at the start.
“I try to keep it low key,” she said. “I just do my best and see what happens.”
Rounding out the top five women were Melissa Lewis in 20:00, Anna Worden in 20:06 and Jennifer Bowell in 20:24.
Dorli McWayne (20:25), Jane Lanford (21:26), Chelsea Peterson (21:38), Naomi O’Neill (21:50) and Elizabeth Found (21:52) rounded out the top 10.
Men’s age-group winners were: Nick Ostbloom, 9 and under; Matt Johnson, 10-11; Joe Bue, 12-14; Max Donaldson, 15-17; Treinen 18-29; Walker, 30-34; Dyer, 35-39; Carroll 40-44; Mark Lindberg 45-49; Roger Sayre, 50-54; David F. Leonard, 55-59; Bill Hoople, 60-64; Owen Hanley, 65-69; Jim Madonna, 70-74; John Nagy, 75-59; Charles Cole, 80 and older.
Women’s age-group winners were: Cheyenne Crawford, 9 and under; Grace Marks, 10-11; Maya Yoshikawa, 12-14; Abby Bravo, 15-19; Brosius, 18-29; Found, 30-34; LeBlond, 35-39; Lewis, 40-44; Karen Harris, 45-49; Erika Van Flein, 50-54; McWayne, 55-59; Dena Doublex, 60-64; Anne Hanley, 65-49; Josie Wooding, 70-74; Janette Hanneman, 80 and older.
Complete race results are on Pages C6 and C7.
The Chena River Run is the first of eight races in the Flint Hills Cup Series that determines the top overall and age-group runners in the Interior.
Other races in the Flint Hills Cup Series are the June 23 Fairbanks Daily News-Miner Midnight Sun Run, the June 28 Flint Hills Mile, the July 14 Run of the Valkyries, the July 22 Gold Discovery Run, the Aug. 4 Santa Claus Half Marathon, the Aug. 25 Golden Heart Trail Run and the Sept. 15 Equinox Marathon.
Contact the News-Miner sports department at 459-7581.