Peyton resident Jessica Norsky is the friendliest runner - and one of the fastest - in the pack.
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VIDEO: Start of the Paint Mines 6K
If you're running in Colorado, even on the Great Plains that spread across roughly half of the state, you're going to encounter some hills.
And that's OK with Gerald Romero, 40, of Colorado Springs, who is good at climbing, but great at descending. Romero captured the top spot in the Paint Mines 6K on Saturday, covering the hilly course in 21, minutes, 45 seconds, a new masters (40 and over) record.
"I just decided at the last minute, what the heck, I guess I'll do this race," said Romero.
Good decision. He averaged 5:51 per mile - the course is about 3.73 miles - and had built a comfortable lead with 1,000 meters and a tough hill remaining in the race.
The Paint Mines 6K was held at the Paint Mines Interpretive Park near Calhan in eastern El Paso County. The area contains colored clay formations that have been sculpted by rain and wind. The course followed trails and gullies that twist over grassy hillsides and cut through the eerie clay monoliths.
Casey Jindra, 25, of Peyton, won the women's race with a time of 29:17. Though she said she rarely races, Jindra averaged 7:52 per mile.
There were 67 finishers in a race that helped benefit area Boy Scouts and the American Trail Running Association.
Keith Morgan, 20, of Colorado Springs, placed second in the men's race with a time of 23:02, followed by Chris Ullum, 20,of Severence, Colo., in 23:14.
Georgann Richardson, 57, of Colorado Springs placed second among the women with a 29:52. Jessia Norsky, 31, of Peyton, was third in 30:27. (Results below)