Trail runners ‘go the distance’ at YMCA Camp Sloper



The Southington YMCA and CT Trailmixers held their first-ever Spring Fling 600 event at Camp Sloper on Sunday, May 7. About 97 people participated in the event, ranging from ages 22 to 69.

“As much as the YMCA is a partner, the CT Trailmixers group is really the heart and soul of this whole event,” said Southington YMCA director John Myers. “They have created a very strong fraternity and sorority of Trailmixers that are so supportive of each other, always trying to challenge each other to new physical conquests out there.”

Through the muddy trails of Camp Sloper, 37 people ran distances well-over a marathon, during a unique, 10-hour race that ran alongside a 5K cross country run.

“It’s an incredible feat that these guys are able to do that,” said Myers. “This isn’t just like running on the roads. This is some real technical trail running, in and out of roots and rocks. It takes a lot of concentration when you’re running.”

Fifty-three-year-old Art Byram of Glastonbury finished with a distance of 52.71 miles under 10 hours to capture the male trophy. Byram finished just minutes before Rebecca Burke, 41, of Portland, who captured the female crown just one hundredth of a mile behind Byram.

Other top male finishers included Justin Curreri, 32, of Glastonbury (49.6 miles); Matthew Silberberg, 41, of Manchester (49.6); Jeremy Susi, 24, of Stratford (43.4); Christopher Jaworski, 59, of Bloomfield, N.J. (40.3); and Scott Williamson, 34, of Manchester (37.2).

Other top female finishers included Laura Bachiochi, 40, of Windsor Locks (40.3); Peggy Edwards, 42, of Ledyard (37.2); Chelsea Curreri, 25, of Glastonbury (34.1); Fiona Cosham, 50, of Southbury (34.1); and Meredith Nash, 44, West Hartford (34.1).

Angela Heidgerd (27.9) was the top Southington finisher.

In the 5K race, Nicholas Lanigan of Southington took first overall with a time of 21:34. Maria Rycerz of Windsor was the top female runner, finishing with a time of 27:35.

Southington residents Karen Donorfio (28:44) and Jenni Thompson (40:45) were not far behind, as Donorfio finished behind Rycerz in second place.

The second annual Fall Fling 400 is set to take place on Sunday, Nov. 12. Although there are only two races to run at these events currently, there is a possibility that new adventure runs for kids through the Sloper trails could be added for future events.

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