Flint Hills race features young and seasoned winners

FAIRBANKS, AK-The third race in the Flint Hills Cup Series was the Flint Hills Mile at West Valley High School last night. There were five heats.

Devin McDowell, a former Malemute and Montana State runner finished the mile in four minutes 56 seconds to take the fast men's heat. Ted Adler was second and Joe Bue was third.

"I was hoping to get under five for sure. But I started out at that pace and kinda rolled with it and see how it went. It's a hot day, you know," McDowell said.

Autumn Fournier rallied to take the women's heat winning in five minutes and 52 seconds. Maria Bray led most of the race before the Lathrop rising sophomore track runner closed in.

"I definitely wanted to be sub six minutes and my goal was pretty much to win," Fournier said. "It's definitely shown me where I am right now and how I can improve my training to get faster and reach my other goals for the cross country season."

The most interesting winner was Warren "No Shoes" Taylor. The barefooted Taylor won the fourth heat in six minutes 29 seconds which was 22nd overall.

I had to ask the 58 year-old do you always run barefoot?

"I like to run the track. It takes a little while to toughen the feet up and I haven't had a chance to do that much this year yet," Taylor said.