The unique 2016 Pacific Northwest doubleheader took place on the next to last weekend of January, the 23rd and 24th. With many athletes taking place in both events, this was a memorable and closely-contested battle on the stairs.
For US cup points, the longest and shortest events (40 and 160 floors) were the ones to enter, and they drew the toughest competition.
Starting in Seattle, the 40 floor climb was won by local athlete Spencer Lazzar, with a blazing 4:32. Following right on his heels was Coloradan powerhouse Mark Ewell with a 4:36, and perennial top finisher PJ Glassey with a 4:52.
On the women’s side of the 40 was Amy Brown with a 5:38, Juliana Villar with a 6:10, and Caitlin Bethlahmy with a 6:13.
In the 160 floor event, the mighty Minnesotan Jason Larson placed first, completing all four climbs in 18:17. Following closely was Seattle native and last year’s winner, Tristan Roth with 18:34. In third was Seattle powerhouse Lawrence Beck, recent winner of the inaugural Space Needle Base2Space climb, with 21:44.
On the women’s side, Elizabeth Lewis won with a 25:59, followed by Lisa Ford with a 26:43, and Claire Kervran with a 29:45.
From there the race moved down to Portland, with many athletes taking the convenient Cascade Amtrak train! A great way to unwind and reminisce about the day’s competition.
The men’s 40 floor climb was similar, but this time Mark Ewell won with a 4:45, followed by PJ Glassey with a 4:53, and local Joe Dudman with a 5:49.
Amy Brown won the 40 floor climb again, with a smoking 5:55, beating all but the podium-placing men. Following her were Juliana Villar with a 6:29, and Marie Marjama
with a 6:37.
The 160 floor race featured familiar men’s 1-2 finishers, but with the order reversed this time. Tristan Roth (18:39) tied the course record and finished ahead of Jason Larson (19:00). Local climber Jason Leman (21:29) knocked off Seattle third place finisher Lawrence Beck (21:55) to take the 3rd podium spot. Following close behind them were national elites Michael Caviston (22:42) and Daniel Dill (24:24).
On the women’s side, Sara Eder placed first with 24:41, followed closely by Coleen Brehm with 24:58, and Kaytie Cunningham with 26:31.
Back to back races with a single low entry fee in nearby fabulous cities is a great opportunity for climbers of every level to have a great weekend of racing, tourism, camaraderie, and fun!