Nielson Challenge 2014 @ 8:00 AM

A Quick 2 Miles With Your Friends

North Monument Valley Park

Race Director

Al Grimme

Race Dates

  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Jan 04
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Mar 01
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Apr 05
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE Summer Series Event #1 of 5 — Sat, May 03
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Jun 07
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Jul 05
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE Summer Series Event #4 of 5 — Sat, Aug 02
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Sep 06
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Oct 04
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Nov 01
  • Nielson Two Mile Challenge FREE — Sat, Dec 06
more information from RRCA on the policy Following guidelines from the Road Runners of Clubs of America (RRCA), Pikes Peak Road Runners discourages and in most cases, does not allow use of headphones in its races. The rationale for this is simple: the majority of our races are held on trails, which are crowded with many other runners (and sometimes other trail users). Maintaining one’s sensory capacity during such situations is paramount for the safety of all participants.

General Information

Entry Fee

None (Yes, there is a free lunch -- your dad was wrong.)

Race Format

The first time you run this event, you'll establish a base time for yourself. This base time is used to generate a handicap time. The handicap time is calculated using an algorithm developed by Bob Royse, and it's geared to favor a beginning runner and the slower runners. Click here for an explanation of the handicap algorithm.

Once you have an established handicap, you are racing against your handicap time. The person who improves the most from their handicap time is the winner. Each month the results are sent off to Bob Royse and he fires up his Nielson algorithm and regenerates all of the handicap times based on the latest result data.

As mentioned before, the handicap does favor a beginning runner or a slower runner who is putting in a lot of quality training time, as it's these types of runners who tend to have significant time improvements running the same course. But the race is also good for established runners and the swift of feet because it gives those runners a good indication of their fitness level. It's the same 2 mile course each month. Thus given similar weather conditions, you have a very good basis to check out your running fitness from month to month.

Awards

At each monthly race, the person who improves the most over their handicap earns a Nielson shirt. Their name also goes on the Nielson plaque for that month. At the PPRR membership dinner and meeting in November, the person with the most Nielson wins during the past 12 months is recognized as the year's winner and gets to keep the Nielson plaque. (A new plaque is then started for the next 12 months.) If multiple people have won the Nielson an equal amount of times, then the yearly award is determined by the person who improved over their handicap by the greatest amount.

The shirts are generously donated by Michael Schenk of EON Studios, located at 836 N Institute in Colorado Springs (633-7986). Visit EON Studios for all of your screen printing needs. Michael gets his exercise on a bicycle, while his wife Susan does the running in the family.

 Course Records

Male: 9:35.599, set by Justin Chaston, May 2011.
Female: 11:12.516, set by Shannon Payne, July 2013.

The results data we have goes back to 1999.  From that time to the present, there have been seven sub-10 minute finishers.  The top 10 finishers from 1999 to the present are:

Male

1. 9:35.599, Justin Chaston, May 2011
2. 9:48.562, Adam Rich, Nov 2009
3. 9:48.840, Robbie Young, Nov 2009
4. 9:49.430, Curtis Suver, Aug 2014
5. 9:49.937, Justin Chaston, Apr 2011
6. 9:55.503, Ryan Hafer, Nov 2009
7. 9:59.135, Matt Levassiur, Aug 2014
8. 10:01.620, Justin Chaston, Apr 2006
9. 10:01.739, Justin Ricks, Nov 2009
10. 10:03.239, Steve Chu, Aug 2014

Female

1. 11:12.516, Shannon Payne, July 2013
2. 11:20.469, Shannon Payne, Aug 2013
3. 11:24.506, Kaitlin Hanenburg, Aug 2009
(Note: #3 could be Jordan Olson, who ran 11:21.959 in July of 2009.  We are not sure if this Jordan is male or female.)

4  11:31.569 Heather Bates, Feb 2013

5. 11:32.271, Shannon Payne, Nov 2013
6. 11:36.978, Micah Tate, Nov 2010
7. 11:36.888, Christie Foster, Jun 2014
8. 11:46.578, Shannon Payne, May 2013
9. 11:49.130, Allie McLaughlin, Dec 2008
10. 11:50.000, Krishna Wainright, Mar 2000

 

Results
Year 2015

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2015  Nov
2015  Oct
2015  Sep
2015  Aug
2015  Jul
2015  Jun
2015  May
2015  Apr
2015  Mar
2015  Feb
2015  Jan
2014  Dec
Yearly Winner to date

 

Year 2014

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2014  Nov      147     Erika Galicia         -05:18.069
2014  Oct      160     Johanna Moe           -08:13.950
2014  Sep      133     Marc Macgregor        -02:16.135
2014  Aug      194     Veronica Salinas      -08:09.150
2014  Jul      189     Leah Freeman          -05:53.736
2014  Jun      207     Aaron Sever           -03:51.266
2014  May      133     Jeff Courtright       -07:18.293
2014  Apr      144     Aaron Sever           -06:45.779
2014  Mar      108     Emmarose Villatoro    -02:25.889
2014  Feb              Race Canceled
2014  Jan      100     Cody Moss             -03:29.012
2013  Dec       14     Jeremy Bergeron       +00:51.068
Yearly Winner          Aaron Sever           2 wins

 

Year 2013

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2013  Nov      115     Ellie Linnenburger    -01:56.895
2013  Oct       57     Nathan Sistare        -02:48:109
2013  Sep      129     Nathan Sistare        -03:48.670
2013  Aug      161     Dennis Kater          -04:03.551
2013  Jul      135     Chance Ricca          -05:45.572
2013  Jun      139     Clay Rahaman          -02:45.861
2013  May      111     Nathan Sistare        -01:59.750
2013  Apr      209     Katie Redinger        -05:51:781
2013  Mar      185     Paige Dailey          -03:39.645
2013  Feb      162     Peter Maksimow        -06:22.767
2013  Jan      121     Becky Moss            -02:42:039
2012  Dec      118     Culley Hamstra        -03:52.821
Yearly Winner          Nathan Sistare        3 wins

 

Year 2012

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2012  Nov      134     Casey Griggs          -02:19.603
2012  Oct       48     Kristina Tabares      -01:36.352
2012  Sep      139     Melissa Schluessler   -07:23.827
2012  Aug      137     Bridgette VanBuren    -04:29.704
2012  Jul      120     Avyrie Hamstra        -03:30.252
2012  Jun      139     Joel Holton           -04:16.270
2012  May      108     Ellie Triplett        -01:38.014
2012  Apr      134     Joseph Castillo       -03:07.218
2012  Mar       84     Devon Kroeker         -02:07.549
2012  Feb       58     Gregory Dewitt        -02:01.544
2012  Jan      144     Kristina Tabares      -04:55.823
2011  Dec       51     Shawn Sturm           -00:49.797
Yearly Winner          Kristina Tabares      2 wins

 

Year 2011

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2011  Nov      114     Raymond Bouton        -05:20.519
2011  Oct       69     MacKenna Triplett     -03:46.509
2011  Sep      132     Jim Massa             -03:22.122
2011  Aug      123     Pat McGuire           -04:56.325
2011  Jul      139     Jim Massa             -04:17.000
2011  Jun      170     Kelly Florek          -06:05.112
2011  May      125     Meredith Brodeur      -04:26.858
2011  Apr      157     Carsyn Hamstra        -03:06.506
2011  Mar      121     Quentin Baker         -04:36:167
2011  Feb       92     Melissa Barnard       -02:46.550
2011  Jan       20     Mike Stephens         +00:25.491
2010  Dec       76     Alyssa Carman         -01:59.104
Yearly Winner          Jim Massa             2 wins

 

Year 2010

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2010  Nov      110     Kelly Pilarczyk       -03:06.658
2010  Oct       66     Karen Deloria         -01:32.682
2010  Sep      116     Brianne Pierson       -05:38.897
2010  Aug      210     Brooke Hunsaker       -07:46.957  (Record high finishers)
2010  Jul      113     Josh Neal             -02:10.655
2010  Jun      147     Donnie Byers          -02:28.501
2010  May       82     Laura Mendicino       -01:04.774
2010  Apr      146     Janna Rombocos        -02:12:813
2010  Mar      128     Eli Ricca             -03:08.302
2010  Feb      118     Matthew Rombocos      -04:11.943
2010  Jan       83     Kathy Hoops           -00:22.233
2009  Dec       52     Ariel Petros-Good     -01:44.446
Yearly Winner          Brooke Hunsaker       1 win
                                             -07:46.957

 

Year 2009

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2009  Nov      124     Kathy Landis          -04:34.117
2009  Oct       43     Brian Landis          -02:46.688
2009  Sep      122     Val Purswell          -02:48.800
2009  Aug      163     Elisabeth Smisson     -03:25.101
2009  Jul      117     Taylor Oseland        -01:44.108
2009  Jun       92     Chris Knapp           -02:48.609
2009  May       63     Brian Landis          -04:12.835
2009  Apr       39     Kenneth Gregoire      -01:28.965
2009  Mar       92     Kathy Landis          -03:24.026
2009  Feb      110     Derek Gorthy          -03:18.184
2009  Jan       92     Eli Ricca             -03:24.610
2008  Dec       69     Logan Gregoire        -06:15.135
Yearly Winner          Kathy Landis          2 wins
                                             -07:58.143

 

Year 2008

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2008  Nov       82     Kenneth Gregoire      -02:53.677
2008  Oct       77     Matthew Buttler       -03:33.370
2008  Sep       72     Cindy Keys            -02:24.725
2008  Aug      152     Aaron Gohlke          -02:48.165
2008  Jul       78     Yolanda Roberts       -02:40.876
2008  Jun       82     Joseph Barrentine     -07:30.309
2008  May       66     Ron Hawley            -05:46.643
2008  Apr       94     Thom Santa Maria      -06:13.156
2008  Mar       83     Chad Halsten          -09:21.795
2008  Feb       58     Edgar Trillo          -01:56.802
2008  Jan       78     Kevin Wood            -02:45.195
2007  Dec       48     Kevin Wood            -05:40.457
Yearly Winner          Kevin Wood            2 wins

 

Year 2007

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2007  Nov       69     Jessica Barden        -03:19.276
2007  Oct       85     Mike Porter           -01:44.406
2007  Sep      106     Karena Hawley         -05:29.675
2007  Aug      122     Scott Gorthy          -05:02.347
2007  Jul      105     David Huber           -03:50.337
2007  Jun       78     Jessalyn Rombocos     -03:31.998
2007  May       63     Elizabeth Wolfe       -01:56.697
2007  Apr       31     Sergio de Lourence    -00:54.700
2007  Mar       41     Josh Synes            -01:45.185
2007  Feb       19     Steve Sanchez         -00:24.272
2007  Jan       32     Dean Buck             -00:10.508
2006  Dec       30     Dean Buck             -00:05.748
Yearly Winner          Dean Buck             2 wins

 

Year 2006

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2006  Nov       62     Shane Swearingen      -01:16.885
2006  Oct       65     Elliotte Brownlee     -04:07.680
2006  Sep       47     Jason Cano            -03:46.652
2006  Aug       92     Paul Arens            -06:12.459
2006  Jul       84     Michael McShane       -03:17.549
2006  Jun       76     Aaron Olson           -01:35.467
2006  May       59     Halee Wulfkuhle       -02:48.475
2006  Apr       64     HJ Arnold             -01:55.966
2006  Mar       72     Elliotte Brownlee     -01:17.183
2006  Feb       72     Les Bell              -01:38.642
2006  Jan       78     Vanessa Wuestoff      -03:01.876
2005  Dec       24     Jessica Raab          -00:07.554
Yearly Winner          Elliotte Brownlee     2 wins

 

Year 2005

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2005  Nov       61     HJ Arnold             -03:09
2005  Oct       66     HJ Arnold             -03:57.171
2005  Sep       62     Robby Giese           -05:26.424
2005  Aug       90     Craig Sommerdorf      -01:38
2005  Jul       82     HJ Arnold             -02:48
2005  Jun       66     Cami Bremer           -02:38
2005  May       56     Adam McKittrick       -03:41
2005  Apr       56     Terry Abner           -03:04
2005  Mar       66     Isabelle Dolan        -04:05
2005  Feb       81     Kevin Kinney          -02:20.5
2005  Jan       20     Kevin Kinney          -00:13
2004  Dec       41     Ariel Petros-Good     -00:36
Yearly Winner          HJ Arnold             3 wins

 

Year 2004

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2004  Nov       46     Don Johnson           -00:40
2004  Oct       36     Aaron Olson           -02:48
2004  Sep       38     Stephen Vaughan       -01:52
2004  Aug       36     Claire McCloy         -01:12
2004  Jul       34     Linda Arens           -05:21
2004  Jun       43     Don Johnson           -01:27
2004  May       21     Don Johnson           -01:21
2004  Apr       26     Don Johnson           -01:37
2004  Mar       24     David Carpenter       -00:30
2004  Feb       26     Kenneth Bowen         -00:54
2004  Jan       35     Marty Schreiner       -00:58
2003  Dec       40     HJ Arnold             -03:40
Yearly Winner          Don Johnson           4 wins

 

Year 2003

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2003  Nov       28     Terry Kurtz           -00:44
2003  Oct       31     Lara Hammerick        -00:33
2003  Sep       32     Christopher White     -00:37
2003  Aug       32     Lile Budden           -00:35
2003  Jul       22     Christopher White     -00:19
2003  Jun       27     Elizabeth Passaglia   -01:37
2003  May       23     Carin Staudte         -01:25
2003  Apr       21     Rick Hessek           -00:28
2003  Mar       16     Jim Hammer            -01:13
2003  Feb       32     Jim Hammer            -02:38
2003  Jan       29     Christopher White     -00:48
2002  Dec       42     Danny Minzer          -05:04
Yearly Winner          Christopher White     3 wins

 

Year 2002

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2002  Nov       15     Woody Noleen          +00:15
2002  Oct       24     Daniel Polak          -01:30
2002  Sep       25     Cliff Donnelly        -01:08
2002  Aug       33     Eric Hettler          -02:03
2002  Jul       26     Jim Doney             -00:22
2002  Jun       37     Jim Hammer            -01:55
2002  May              missing results
2002  Apr       28     Charles Fuerman       -00:55
2002  Mar       15     Brice Primrosse       -00:18
2002  Feb       25     Charles Fuerman       -01:02
2002  Jan       21     Jim Massa             -00:39
2001  Dec       32     Matthew Avischious    -00:59
Yearly Winner          Charles Fuerman       2 wins

 

Year 2001

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2001  Nov       27     Kristy Emerson        -01:08
2001  Oct       28     Tom Noonan            -02:32
2001  Sep       22     Chuck Fuerman         -00:38
2001  Aug       27     Sue Malone            -02:31
2001  Jul       29     Robin Satterwhite     -00:54
2001  Jun       25     Bob Mutu              -02:45
2001  May       21     Linda Arens           -00:48
2001  Apr       19     Don Johnson           +00:16
2001  Mar       18     John Graber           +00:24
2001  Feb       10     Leroy Smith           -01:49
2001  Jan       32     Donald Holkum         -01:01
2000  Dec       22     Neal Oseland          -00:12
Yearly Winner          Bob Mutu              1 win
                                             -02:45

 

Year 2000

Year Month # Finishers Winner                Under/Over Handicap
2000  Nov       24     Erik Watz             -01:01
2000  Oct       25     Ken Lonnquist         -01:00
2000  Sep       41     Vicky Castillo        -02:49
2000  Aug       16     Bill Bennett          +00:16
2000  Jul       22     Daniel Castaneda      -00:17
2000  Jun              missing results
2000  May       19     Bill Suter             00:00
2000  Apr       25     Susan Schenk          -00:02
2000  Mar       25     Don Johnson           -01:03
2000  Feb       25     Paul Rayfield         -00:19
2000  Jan       14     Margaret Rayfield     +00:10
1999  Dec        8     Steve Jennings        +00:58
Yearly Winner          Vicky Castillo        1 win
                                             -02:49

Event History

Bob Mutu wrote the following article for the PPRR newsletter in the early 2000s. It gives a very good narrative of the history behind this event. The event is in its third decade and has never missed a month.

Nielson Challenge by Bob Mutu

One of the things that I really like about the PPRR is the Nielson Challenge. Due to injuries and the lack of soft trails in Okinawa I didn't run my last two years there. Coming home to Palmer Park and Monument Valley Park has rejuvenated my desires! One of the biggies is the Nielson Challenge. I haven't read much about that run so let me tell you all about it.

Originally, at least as far back as I go, around 1980 it was run on a two mile course in South Monument Valley Park. At that time the race was directed by Phil and Julie Foster. Bob Royse did the results handicapping then and he still does them today. At that time it was simply called the Two-Mile Handicap. The course ran a loop north from the parking lot at the Cache La Poudre Bridge on the paved road then looped back along the west side of the creek where it crossed over Cache La Poudre and ran across the parking lot to the sidewalk then south to the creek. From there it ran up the trail along the west side of the creek (back then there was no footbridge) to finish at the Cache La Poudre Bridge

Phil moved it to North Monument Valley Park in the mid eighties, I suspect due to the congestion, running on the road and crossing over Cache La Poudre Street Bill Bennett measured off a new exact two mile course.

In the late eighties Larry Nielson joined our club. He was thirty-eight and wanted to get into condition. He started running the two mile handicap in early winter and ran it every month, winning it one time as I recall. Larry attached himself to me and asked me lots of running questions and wanted to run with me. I remember one five miler that Runners Roost had over in Palmer Park at their past branch store located there. Larry came up to me and asked me what pace we wanted to run (I was pacing a friend). I told him about seven-thirty per mile and he asked if it was OK if he ran with us. I said sure! You know, back then I used to go out a little too fast, actually a lot too fast, and I think the first mile was about six-thirty mostly uphill. Larry hung in there, but gave me some really nasty looks (good thing he was too winded to talk!). We came in at about 37 minutes, much faster than Larry thought he could run. He was thrilled....did everything but handsprings! Larry was always so enthusiastic and nice to be around. His spirit was competitive but only to the point of self-improvement. He loved the camaraderie of the after race feeds and hanging around to dissect the race and generally chew the fat.

In the late summer of that year Larry took a trip up to Guffey to run the Guffey Gasp....a seven miler at very high altitude on tough hills. After the race he told friends that he felt tired and funny but he drove home. When he got home his wife took him directly to the hospital, where he was diagnosed as having a heart attack. When I heard about it I went right over to the hospital. We talked for quite a while. He told me his father and grandfather had both died at a younger age than he was now of heart attacks. He took up running because he wanted to try to live as long as he could. He was very happy with the club and the people he had met and felt that his life would continue as happy as it had been.

Larry was released from the hospital the next day and he went home. His wife told me the next day that he was sitting in his favorite chair when his heart failed and he left us. Shortly after that the Board of Directors voted to change the name of the handicap to the Nielson Challenge. This race represents the heart and spirit of our club...as did Larry.

For those of you who want to know more about the race: It is two miles run on the dirt paths in North Monument Valley Park. It is designed for all levels of runners with the beginners having a better chance to win than the more experienced runners. Every time you run, your time goes into a computer and a handicap time is computed for your next race. There are fudge factors for missed races and the first few races but after several runs your handicap is pretty much your average running time for most of your runs. The winner each month is the person who beats their handicap time by the most time.....or who comes the closest to that time if no one beats it.....that happens a lot in winter. The race is run at 8AM on the first Saturday morning of each month. It starts near the playground down the hill from the Fontanero entrance to the park. It is FREE both to club members and non-members.

Course Information

Flat course on hard packed dirt trails. The first mile is an out-and-back, first heading south and then north after 1/2 mile. The second mile is a loop, heading north on the first half of the loop and south on the 2nd half.

Directions

W. Fontanero Street & Culebra Place, Colorado Springs, CO

From I-25, take the Uintah Exit (Exit 143)

  • At end of exit ramp, turn east (away from the mountains).
  • Turn left at Cascade Ave.
  • Turn left at Fontanero St
  • Turn left at Culebra Place.
  • Registration area is near the bathrooms

Hey Mom, I'm stretching, but I can't get down.