This past Saturday, over 250 runners participated in the Arctic Frog 15K/25K/50K in Independence Grove Forest Preserve in Libertyville.
The weather was amazing for a December race with some racers in shorts and others appreciating not having to wear three layers. Runners had the choice between three distances, 15K, 25K and 50K, with the overall race giving an ultra vibe with a laid back atmosphere and well stocked aid stations.
The 25K runners completed the loop course once, the 50K participants completing two loops, and 15K racers doing a modified version of the course. With very few people on the trail other than racers, the course was well marked and volunteers throughout. There were a few gradual inclines and descents for Chicagoans with a nice mix of surfaces other than concrete or cement.
Aid stations have always been well stocked for this race; in addition to the usuals, there was PB&J, chicken broth, nuts, pretzels, oranges, caramelized bacon and hot dog rolls! 15K/25K racers received medals at the finish and 50K racers were awarded a belt buckle. Unfortunately, the medals had a typo on them but all of us will be mailed new medals this week!
For me, I completed the 15K as an aided long run before the cold weather hits Chicago and as prep for the St George, Utah Half Marathon in January. I enjoyed running it with friends where our conversation and selfies with the amazing aid stations took priority over time. This is the third year I have participated in the race and will be back next year. Rey and his race team do a great job organizing this event and are always looking to improve runner’s experiences.
Top Finishers 50K Men
Jared Rothlauf (Kenosha, WI) 3:15
Jeff Friedman (Dubuque, IA) 3:27
Mark Krause (Villa Park, IL) 3:41
Top Finishers 50K Women
Wibke Rees (Holland, MI) 4:42
Amanda Richey (Chicago, IL) 4:47
Madeline Scholl (Arlington, VA) 4:55