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Cowtown Marathon draws 8,500 runners for brisk, windy weekend

Fort Worth’s Cowtown Marathon drew some 8,500 registered runners on Sunday Feb. 26 to run the 39th edition of the annual event.

Justin Gable of Amarillo led the pack with a time of 2:28:00 to take home the trophy.

Elite Amy Puzey of Calgary, Canada took the women’s title with a time of 3:01:29.

The Miller Coors Ultra Marathon, a distance of 50K, was won by Elite Program runner Calum

Neff, of Katy, with a time of 3:09:35. Women’s winner was Tracy Gruman of Grapevine, in a time of 3:44:51.

In the men’s half marathon, last year’s third-place winner, Julius Koskei of Morristown, New Jersey, ran a time of 1:04:23 to win simultaneously setting a new course record. This time beat the previous record of 1:04:34 set in 2014. For the women, Joan Alyabei of Lansing, Michigan, took first in a time of 1:15:31.

A new competitive opportunity, the “Conquer the Hill Challenge,” was available to the fastest non-elite man and woman in each of the three marathon distances to reach the top of the .344-mile Main Street Bridge hill approaching the Tarrant County Courthouse. Winners received a free entry into the 2018 Cowtown.

Half marathon Conquer the Hill Challenge winners were Shawn O’Malley of Dallas with a time of 1:11.0 and Kristy Deavers of Fort Worth at 1:14.0 in the women’s division. Marathon distance Challenge winners were Eric Van Horn of Dallas at 1:11.0 and Ana Martinez of Wylie, at 1:29.0. Ultra distance Challenge winners were Matthew Reily of Oklahoma City, at 1:16.0 and Emily Marsh of Edmond, Oklahoma, with a time of 1:45.0

“We were impressed by the mix of wins of both elites and non-elites at the 2017 Cowtown,” said Heidi Swartz, executive director of The Cowtown in a news release. “We were especially excited by the wins of Texas runners. Congratulations to them and to all the tens of thousands of runners at 2017’s Cowtown.”

The Cowtown races are presented by the University of North Texas Health Science Center, Medical City Healthcare, MillerCoors, Star Telegram, NBC 5, The Ranch, Bruce Lowrie Chevrolet and Cook Children’s

Health Care System.

The Cowtown Marathon is the the largest multi-event race in North Texas and has an economic impact of $10 million, according to organizers said.

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