RunningICONMatt Urbanski, 32, of Seattle, Wash., battled wind chills hovering a sliver above 0 and almost 6 inches of new snow to win the inaugural Groundog Marathon Saturday in Grand Rapids.

Urbanski completed six laps of the loop course along the Grand River through Millennium Park in 2:58:33 to finish first in a field of 143.

Jake Gillette, 26, of Goshen, Ind., finished second, over 13 minutes back of Urbanski in 3:12:34.


Despite conditions, Urbanski loss less than 5 minutes off the Boston Marathon qualifying time he ran last June in 60-degree temperatures at the Vancouver USA Marathon where he finished fifth overall in a field 567.

Top finisher in the 42-runner women’s marathon field was Lisa Altman, 38, of St. Joseph, who was 17th overall just under an hour behind Urbanski in 3:58:08. Last May 20 in Bay City, Altman ran a personal best 3:09:54 at The Qualifier Marathon on day when temperatures soared above 90 degrees. Altman finished over 12 minutes ahead of women’s runner-up Laura Waldo, 49, of Ludington, who finished in 4:11:40.

Check out the Groundhog Marathon’s facebook page:

Evan Groendyk, 26, of Grand Rapids, topped a field of 235 brave souls in the half marathon, finishing in 1:29:44. Runner-up Bret Austin, 46, of Edgerton, Wisc., was hot on Groendyk’s heels, finishing just 28 seconds back in 1:30:12.

Grand Rapids’ Janet Becker, 39, finished 9th overall in 1:44:15, topping a half marathon field of 119 women by a cool 7:45 over runner-up Christen McCool, 32, of Portage.

Hudsonville’s Matt Mehalko, 30, won the 1/6 marathon (4 1/3 miles for the distance math challenged) in 33:12.23. Jackie Green, 27, of Grand Rapids was 6th overall in the 55-runner field in 38:08.14.

For complete results of the 2013 Groundhog’s Day Marathon visit:


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