Decorations from the 2014 Awards party.

Keith Knipling

Awards Party Honoring 2015

February 6, 2016  •  Cabin John, MD

The VHTRC family gathered this past weekend for our annual celebration of all things Happy Trails as we raised a glass (or two) and handed out honors to our VHTRC Award winners for 2015.

For those who joined in the festivities after dancing with the Massanutten rocks earlier in the day at the morning’s training run, the huge spread of food and drink on hand made the party a true “19th Hole,” with White House Tom McNulty’s Guinness beef stew as the centerpiece.

While Tom was helming the chef’s table (complete with options for our gluten-free, paleo and vegan friends), Jim Daniels and Alisa Springman pulled together a massive spread of appetizers, and Pam Gowen provided her usual decorative flair for the dining room, this time with tablecloths made to resemble the finish-line banners of our club’s signature races. Also behind the scenes, Katie Keier kept the party machine humming as the overall event organizer. (Also, special thanks to Jaret Seiberg for helping to secure the location, and for providing a last-minute HDMI cable to help keep the awards presentation process moving!)

Along with the presentation of awards to this year’s recipients, we also took time to honor two longtime club members who have made amazing returns to ultrarunning this year after experiencing significant injuries: Tom Green and Dennis Herr. We saw Dennis make his comeback at A Race for the Ages, where he laid down a 100 mile run like he’d never missed a beat. Tom, meanwhile, showed his grit at the Crooked Road 24-hour event this fall, where he posted 30-plus miles just a few short months after his life-threatening injuries experienced during a tree-trimming accident this spring. While neither was able to join in the festivities, the round of applause they received was surely heard as far away as West Virginia and beyond.

The 2015 award winners and nominees are listed below. Winners in each category are denoted with bold font. Congratulations to all of our winners!

Furbutt Award

The Furbutt Award is a performance award that recognizes participation in club events as a runner and a volunteer. This award recognizes two runners — one male and one female member of the VHTRC who showed up at just about every club run and participated by running in a determined manner, to the very best of his or her ability. This person tries really hard. But whereas the recipients would run most of our club events, (and would finish the events they entered, including MMT or BRR), he or she would not run all club events. He or she would occasionally volunteer. This is the award for the person who is really engaged in the VHTRC and supports the club by running well and volunteering in all our runs and events.

Women

  • Allison Holko
  • Judith Weber

Men

  • Tom Corris
  • Bob Gaylord
  • Gilbert Gray
  • Tom Simonds

Runner of the Year

Recognizes two runners — one male and one female member of the VHTRC — who have demonstrated consistently outstanding performances in trail runs during the past year. Nominees for this award may be considered not only for their speed but also for their versatility and consistency as well as their support and representation of the club while performing at this high level over the year.

Women

  • Kathleen Cusick
  • Bethany Patterson

Men

  • Jordan Chang
  • Brad Hinton

Performance of the Year

Recognizes one male and one female member of the VHTRC for the most outstanding performance of the year in a trail run. “Outstanding” is considered in terms of course difficulty and weather conditions as well as the age, gender, and ability of the runner. In other words, this is a relative, not an absolute, test.

Women

  • Sarah Smith
  • Robin Watkins

Men

  • Steve Barge
  • Joey Cohen
  • Tom Corris
  • Ed Demoney
  • Keith Knipling
  • Mario Raymond

Most Improved

Recognizes one male and one female member of the VHTRC whose performances in trail running in the past year have significantly improved.

Women

  • Sarah Curtis
  • Angela Flowers-Russell
  • Lisa Johnston
  • Samantha Pitts-Kiefer

Men

  • Jared Byrd
  • Paul Encarnacion
  • Todd Folmsbee
  • Jesse Fuller
  • Bryon Powell
  • Erik Price

Rookie of the Year

Recognizes the male OR female member of the VHTRC who, in his or her first year of trail running has demonstrated mental toughness and persistence as well as ability.

  • Jamie Greenawalt
  • Ajani Simmons

Ambassador

Given to the VHTRC Ambassador of the Year. You figure out the criteria.

  • Rick Amernick
  • Tracy Dahl
  • Quatro Hubbard

James Moore Award

  • Quatro Hubbard

Last updated January 13, 2020