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Valkyrie confusion: Runners take wrong turn near finish and add distance to 8K event

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Posted: Saturday, July 14, 2012 11:56 pm | Updated: 10:37 am, Mon Jan 21, 2013.

FAIRBANKS — Some of the Valkyries got confused near the finish of the 8-kilometer run Saturday morning.

A number of the early finishers in the Run of the Valkyries took a wrong turn about 200 meters from the finish line at the Moore Street Gate to Pioneer Park and ran an extra distance, according to race timer John Estle.

The race results show the order in which runners crossed the finish, regardless of how far they ran, Estle said in an email to the News-Miner.

Estle said he has no way of knowing which runners went the wrong way.

He said he’s pretty sure the top two men — Steve Chu and Devin McDowell — ran the proper course. He’s also pretty sure the second and third women’s finishers — Melissa Lewis and Anna Worden went the wrong way.

The race set a record for number of entries. There were 220 registered runners and 211 finishers.

Prizes were awarded to the top three men and women and to the top three boys and girls age 17 and younger.

Chu continued his dominating summer effort, winning the race with a time of 26 minutes, 18.5 seconds. McDowell was only four seconds behind in 26:22.2.

Ben Nelson took the third spot in 27:57.5, with Alex Voetsch and Storm Williams rounding out the top five in 30:16.4 and 30:25.4.

Dorli McWayne was credited with the women’s victory in 33:49.7, followed by Lewis in 34:46.0 and Worden in 34:51.6. Anna Merrill posted a 35:39.3 to take fourth place and Dee Daniels rounded out the top five in 35:57.1.

Girls and women’s age-group winners were: Taryn Plunk, age 9 and younger; Katie Johnson, 10-11; Hayley Perkins, 12-14; Kailey Mills, 15-17; Worden, 18-29; Tana Martin, 30-34; Merrill 35-39 Lewis, 40-45; Tracey Martinson, 45-49; Erika Van Flein, 50-54; McWayne, 55-59; Suzanne Williams, 60-64; Charlotte Berdahl, 65-69; Barbara Page, 70-74; and Janette Hanneman, 89 and older.

Boys and men’s age-group winners were, Eli Merrill, 9 and under; Jacob Chingliak, 10-11; Fabian Pelayo, 12-14; Williams, 15 -17; McDowell, 18-29; Chu, 30-34; Roy Strandberg, 35-39; Glenn Thompson, 40-44; Robert Jordan, 45-49; Robert Weeden, 50-54; David Leonard, 55-59; Dennis Hedgecock, 60-64; Pete Hjellen, 65-69; and Jim Madonna, 70-74.

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