Good Weather, Modest Turnout, and a Question Mark for 2005
Jordan Nelson of Colorado eked out a victory in Arizona's Cactus Classic inline marathon, finishing one second in front of Norm Kirby and Randy Bowman.
Stacey Eldridge of Florida won the women's race for the second year in a row. Lizzy Loeb was second.
Ed Wachter, the race director, said the three top men finishers broke away from the lead pack about seven miles from the start. "They stayed away from us, and they ended up having a sprint finish at the end," said Wachter, who finished seventh in the pro master's division.
The next group of skaters crossed the finish line three minutes later.
A total of 152 skaters competed in the race, 35 fewer than last year.
Wachter said skaters were dismayed about news that next year's Cactus Classic may be canceled. "They want the race to continue," he said. "I told them that we are looking for new sponsors so we can continue to do this, but that otherwise it will be a no-go if we can't get that money by March."
The race committee has set a goal of raising $15,000 by then.
Wachter said racers were enthusiastic about this year's racecourse, which made four laps around a 6.5-mile loop. "Everyone liked the course, which is pretty surprising because I had some pretty good hills in it," he said.
The weather was great for racing, Wachter said. Partly overcast with temperatures from the mid-50s to the mid-60s.
Residents from the retirement community of Oro Valley hauled out chairs and tables cheered on the skaters from the sidewalks.
Top Finishers in the Cactus Classic VIII ...
Pro Master Men:
Pro Master Women:
Copyright © 2006 by Robert Burnson