A Waterville Valley local won the annual Black Bear Half Marathon on Sunday, Aug. 24. I caught up with a deservedly proud Rene Schwartz at the White Mountain Athletic Club, which he manages.
Rene said, “I was running a sub 7 minute race until mile 10 (Hardy Hill) and the ensuing hills pushed my time back to a 7:25 per minute overall pace, which is quite good for us 51 year olds!”
Prior to competing in the Black Bear Half, Rene trained for a few weeks with Ed Roake, an owner at the Golden Eagle Lodge. It seems only fitting that Roake finished second behind Rene in this year’s Black Bear Half. Another Golden Eagle property owner, 75-year-old Bill Springer, also participated in the Black Bear Half.
Rene said, “The best part for me was winning in my hometown with my son Chris cheering me on and also watching other locals achieve their goals!” He added, “I was sub 7 for the first 10 miles but the hills coming back in ruled the day, as they always do, and separated the field.”
Rene explained that the Black Bear Half Marathon is considered a “hard” half marathon because of the last 5.5 miles into Waterville Valley.
Check out Rene’s photos from the day…and make sure you offer Rene and his fellow runners a big high five!