Fort Collins Running Club Announces 2022 Elite Field

The Horetooth Half Marathon will again be awarding $8,000 in prize money this year, with generous support from the Fort Collins Running Club.

“The Fort Collins Running Club is committed to supporting runners of all ages, talent, and experience.  As part of our mission to support the elite side of the sport in Colorado, the Club has continued its support of the Horsetooth Half prize purse by matching the $4,000 put up by the race, as well as increasing our support of local runners by offering cash awards for our top club members,” said Fort Collins Running Club Vice President, Kate Schulte.

“We love the Horsetooth Half course and  its vibe, and want to make it THE race for all Coloradoans, and even all U.S. runners, to add to their bucket list of races.  With a challenging and beautiful course,  the best post-race party in the state, and now with even more of the best talent in the area, the 49th running of the race is sure to be exciting!”

For full award details, including age group awards, please visit the awards section of the race website

Men’s Race

Two past winners (and holders of the second and third fastest race times) will be in the running for the win on Sunday, April 10. 

Last year’s winner & a member of the Fort Collins Running Club Racing Team, Tyler McCandless is back on the start line. In 2021, Tyler ran the third fastest time ever on the course (1:07:52) after three years of trying. He also holds the record for the fastest time to the top of Monster Mountain (9:54) and knows the Horsetooth course well. Tyler is coming off a recent fourth place finish (first American) at the LA Marathon. 

Tyler will be up against a stout field though, including one runner who has gone faster. Dominic Korir won the 2019 race in a time of 1:07:34, just six seconds off Gebre Abadi’s 2017 course record. More recently, Dominic finished second at the Philadelphia Distance Run Half Marathon in a time of 1:02:48, suggesting he is in fine fettle. 

There will be a strong field pushing our two former winners, including:

  • Lawi Lalang had a stellar career at the University of Arizona with podium finishes across his career in both XC and track, winning the 2011 NCAA D1 XC National Championship and both the 5,000 & 10,000 races at the 2013 Outdoor D1 Track and Field Championships. Now based in Colorado Springs, Lawi was 10th at the December 2021 USATF Half Marathon Championships in a time of 1:02:49.
  • Sean O’Connor has come into some form after a DIII career at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York. He qualified for the 2020 US Olympic Marathon Trials with a half marathon time of 1:03:45. More recently, in October, he finished 10th at the Broad Street 10 Miler in Philadelphia in a time of 48:05, a race at which Lawi Lalang was sixth (47:10).
  • Local CSU standout, Carson Hume was fifth at last year’s Horsetooth Half (1:10:35), his first half marathon since stepping up in distance as part of the Fort Collins Running Club Racing Team after a stellar CSU career. 
  • Another local runner and top 10 finisher from last year, Clint Anders, will be toeing the line again on Sunday. Clint was seventh in November in a time of 1:10:52 and is known to attack the hills hard.
  • Also returning from last year’s top 10 and another Fort Collins local is Nate Routhier (1:10:50, 6th).
  • Kurt Roeser also returns to the field after an 8th place finish in 2021 (1:11:14) and a third place finish (1:08:28) behind Dominic Korir in 2019.  
  • Will Cross will be lining up at the Horsetooth Half for the first time. He brings a 2:17:33 marathon PR (Chicago, 2019) to the line, putting him firmly in the conversation.
  • Others in the field include: Christian Leitner (1:09:55 at the Madison Half Marathon); FCRC Racing Team member Calvin Lehn (1:06:53 at the 2020 Houston Half); and Zeb Hanley (1:08:46 at the 2021 Foot Traffic Flat Half Marathon). 

Women’s Race

Unlike in the men’s race, there will be no defending champion or former race winner in the women’s field, leaving it wide open.

The top returning runner from last year is Sophie Seward. A member of the local Front Range Elite training group, Sophie placed fourth at last year’s race in a time of 1:19:27 and comes in with a marathon PR of 2:33:23.

Teammate Sophie Anders is coming into form just in time for what could be a really strong run at the Horsetooth Half. Sophie set a new half marathon PR at the Austin Marathon (1:17:40) in February and is coming off a recent 30km trail win at the Behind the Rocks race in Moab, UT.

Salt Lake City’ Liz Lagoy will also be among the favorites on Sunday. She is coming into the race with a newly minted marathon PR of 2:40:15 from the November 2021 Indianapolis Marathon where she finished fifth.

Others in the field who will be among the favorites include:

  • Molly Callahan – a top 10 finisher from last year (1:24:53) holding a half marathon PR of 1:18:39 from the January 2022 Arizona Half Marathon.
  • Jenna Bensko – another member of the Fort Collins-based Front Range Elite team who will be vying for a top 10 finish. She comes into the race with a 2:55 marathon PR.
  • Denver’s Sarah Guhl PR’ed at last year’s New York City Marathon with a time of 2:53:33 and more recently finished third at the Honolulu Marathon.
  • Jessica Broderick will be running Horsetooth as her second ever half marathon, and she comes in with a PR of 1:21:30 from the Portland Half Marathon.

The racing action starts at 8:30am on Sunday, April 10. Lead runners in the men’s race will hit the finish a bit after 9:30am, with the women close on the men’s heels.

Tyler McCandless winning the 2021 race.
Sophie Seward finishing 4th at the 2021 Horsetooth Half