It was a beautiful morning for the 281 runners finishing the 10th annual Sun Valley Half Marathon and 10-kilometer and 5k runs sponsored by the Wood River YMCA last Saturday.
The turnout was just about identical to last year’s record-setting 283 runners here.
Winners of the 13.1-mile half marathon among 174 finishers were exactly the same as last year. They were Michael Lutz, 27, of Jackson Hole, Wyo. and Shannon Deboer, 27, of Boise.
Lutz (1.21:38) clipped almost two minutes off his winning time from the 2013 race and prevailed by nearly six minutes over 58-year-old Kevin Tuck of Salt Lake City, Utah (1.27:31). Top local in fifth place was Josh Switzer, 30, in 1.34:18.
Deboer captured her third consecutive women’s title in the Sun Valley Half Marathon with a seventh-place overall finish in 1.36:09, over six min-utes ahead of the next woman. Deboer counts her 3.20:57 finish in the 2013 Boston Marathon as one of her most memorable experiences.
The last time Deboer didn’t stand on the top of the podium at the Sun Valley Half was in 2011, when Ketchum’s Morgan Arritola out-timed her. Salt Lake’s Kevin Tuck was third in 2011 and second in 2012.
Saturday’s courses started and finished on the lawn next to Sun Valley Resort Pavilion.
Ketchum’s Liz Clark (50:37) clocked the fastest women’s time in the 10-kilometer (6.2 mile) race. Tying for first place of the 62 10k runners were Boise runners Andy Johnson, 48, and Jack Johnson, 14, in 44:54.
Placing 7-8-9 in the 10k were Eric Kafka of Hailey (50:58), John McLaughlin of Ketchum (51:05) and Owen Holt-Frank, 11, of Ketchum (52:35).
Benjamin Zenger, 23, of Salt Lake City led 45 runners finish-ing Saturday’s 5k footrace in 24:28. Top female finishers were Melissa Gonzalez-Maza, 12, of Ketchum in 32:29 and Ni-cole Pratt, 19, of Ketchum in 32:41, good for ninth and 10th place overall.