Severy wins debut; Cretti 3-peats
Considering the Severy family’s running legacy in Aspen, it came as no surprise yesterday morning to see Jon Severy kicking around the final turn at Paradise Bakery without a single challenger in sight.He didn’t even appear to be sweating as he bounded to victory in the Boogie’s Diner Buddy 5 mile race. That the 22-year-old Aspen High graduate and senior cross-country runner at the University of Colorado, Boulder, had never entered the race before, well, that was the shocker.Jon’s 16-year-old sister, Christy, for instance, raced her 10th Buddy 5 on Sunday, and three other Severys were in the field.
“I’ve always thought of excuses not to run it, and I couldn’t think of anymore,” Jon said after circumnavigating Aspen in 26 minutes, 16 seconds, nearly a minute and a half ahead of the men’s runner-up.Then he grinned, adding, “Don’t tell my coach I ran this.””Our training’s supposed to be long and slow right now. Not fast. But I wanted to make sure I won for my mom.”In the women’s race, Carbondale’s Caroline Cretti captured her third consecutive Buddy 5 title, finishing with about a minute-and-a-half cushion in 31:23. A 2002 Roaring Fork High School graduate, Cretti, 20, is a junior cross-country runner at Williams College in Massachusetts.”A good distance for a good cause – it’s nice to come out and run here,” said Cretti. “I have the best of both worlds: train out here in the summer and then run with the team.”
More than 800 runners participated in the annual Aspen Independence Day tradition. And conditions, sunny but not yet hot, could not have been nicer for the five-mile loop from Boogie’s to Slaughterhouse Bridge, up the hill on Cemetery Lane and then back to Boogie’s.Rounding out the men’s top five behind Jon Severy was Aspen triathlete Thaddeus Reichley (27:43), Lakewood’s “Cheyne Heiny” (29:59), and Julian Underwood (30:01) and Casey Ward (30:03) of Aspen.Severy and Reichley, a teacher at Aspen Elementary, opened up an early lead. And soon, before they reached the hill climb, Severy tore away from Reichley.”I wasn’t able to catch him,” said Reichley, 29. “Everyone was cheering, ‘There’s no one behind you,’ and that just made it game over for me. With no one pressing me, I couldn’t help but turn it into a training run at that point.”
Denver’s Noreen Shea finished second in the women’s race (32:51) followed by Melane Rapp (33:43) of Scottsdale, Ariz. Robin Severy, 25, was fourth (34:29), San Diego’s Janice Penrose fifth (35:02) and 2002 state high school cross-country champion Christy Severy sixth (35:10).(Rounding out the Severys, mom Betty was 14th for women, in 37:15, and Patrick, 10, the youngest, was just behind in 37:23, for 62nd for men.)About four minutes after finishing, Jon Severy was already talking about keeping the workout going. Jon, it seems, was hardly a newcomer to the race, not with all the family connections, including stories he heard from his late older brother Chris, who also ran at AHS and CU-Boulder.”Whenever Chris would do it, he’d always run up the Ute Trail afterwards. And that’s become sort of a tradition; I know Ricky Gates did it last year.”So I think I’m gonna go do it – right now. It’d be cool if that really became a tradition.”
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Aspen Mountain opened for the season on Wednesday, a day earlier than originally planned. Top-to-bottom snowmaking, a solid recent storm and well-behaved guests made for a great experience despite all of the extra precautions.