Fall 2014 PRT Men's Season Wrap-up

The PRT Men made more than 100 race appearances this past fall, consistently bringing scoring teams in both the Open and Masters divisions to the Dirt Dog XC Series races. The Masters team, led by Robert Verhees and Stephen Johnson, won the overall team title, while the Open Men, coming in third in a closely fought championship race with San Diego Track Club and Milestone Track Club, took second in the overall team scoring, and had three men in the top-ten individual scoring (Tyler Underwood, Derek Bradley, and Alex Phipps). 

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Alex Phipps led the Open team at the first race of the series, the Wild Duck 5K, running 16:13. He was closely followed by Dan Seidel (16:14), Thomas Whitcomb (16:15), Chuck McKeown (16:19), and new member Rory Golden (16:51). Stephen Johnson won the Masters race in 16:54, followed by team captain Brian Culley (17:03), Greg McMillan (17:21), Jason Lewis (17:21), and Iron Dog Sean Fader (17:39).

  Iron Dog Sean Fader at Cougar Challenge 8K.

Iron Dog Sean Fader at Cougar Challenge 8K.

At the very tough Balboa 4-Miler, new member Justin Turner made an immediate impact, finishing just behind Derek Bradley (22:07) in 22:09, followed by Dan Seidel (22:12) and Chuck McKeown (22:50). Rob Verhees took second in the Masters race, and Jeff Creighton, running in the 50+ division, took fifth overall Master.

The PRT Open Men won their first team race of the season at the Bonita Stampede (8K), with an outstanding performance by new member Tyler Underwood, who took second overall in 26:25. Seidel, Phipps, Whitcomb, and Bradley all finished within a minute of Tyler to seal the team victory.

In early October, PRT had a great turnout at the Balboa Boogie 5K, with all top five Open men (Derek Bradley, Dan Seidel, Eduardo Mariscal, Justin Turner, and Alex Phipps) running well under 16 minutes on the rolling course. For the Masters, Rob Verhees took second in 16:13, followed closely by Stephen Johnson (16:21) in third.

Alex Phipps turned in a terrific sub-26-minute performance at the Cougar Challenge 8K to lead the Open team, and Rob Verhees and Stephen Johnson again took second and third, respectively, for the Masters, with additional strong races by Jeff Creighton, Sean Fader, and Joel Bernard, all breaking 30 minutes. 

  Justin Turner and Tyler Underwood at Dirt Dog Champs.

Justin Turner and Tyler Underwood at Dirt Dog Champs.

Derek Bradley led the Open men to a team win at the Cuyamaca 6K on November 1, taking second overall in 19:19. He was followed by Tyler Underwood, Alex Phipps, Eduardo Mariscal, Daniel Farmer, and Patrick Baldwin. The Masters men swept the top four spots, with Stephen Johnson taking the top spot in 20:35, followed by Jason Lewis, Jeff Creighton, and Sean Fader.

After a long season, the Dirt Dog Championship 8K race was held on November 16 on a tough, four-loop grass course at Mission Bay. Justin Turner, who also ran a 2:25 marathon in October, led the Open men in 26:57, and scoring behind him were Tyler Underwood (27:03), Alex Phipps (27:16), Derek Bradley (27:22), and Thomas Whitcomb (27:56). 

The Open men narrowly took third in the race but earned second place overall in the Dirt Dog series. The Masters men, extending their dominance from earlier in the season, won the race and the series, with Rob Verhees (28:15; 2nd), Stephen Johnson (28:31; 3rd), Jason Lewis (29:46), Jeff Creighton (29:51), and Brian Culley (30:09) making up the top five.

In the overall individual standings for the Dirt Dog series, Tyler Underwood took second place, and Derek Bradley and Alex Phipps also finished in the top ten. Stephen Johnson and Rob Verhees took second and third overall, Jeff Creighton was second in the 50+ division, and Sean Fader achieved “Iron Dog” status, running all races in the series. All in all, a great season for the PRT men’s team, and they look forward to another great year in 2015!