BILLINGS – The winner of this year’s Montana Marathon is also a champion in the Scott Firefighter Stair Climb in Seattle.
Missoula City firefighter Andrew Drobeck, who has won the stair climb six times, enjoyed a strong race on Sunday.
“It was good,” Drobeck said. “I ran pretty much even pace the whole way. A lot of times you go out too hard and fade in the last bit. And I tried to start out what was reasonably for what kind of shape I’m in.”
The marathon and the stair climb give Drobeck two different challenges.
“(The marathon) gets you 90% of the way there for what you would need to do good there,” he said. “But then there’s this real specific, it’s a different type of hard. This is an endurance race. And that’s an all-out effort for 10 minutes.”
Meanwhile, Sheena Hauf, a nurse in Billings, ran with a special flag and a military vest.
“I’m running for 9-11,” Hauf said. “It was Tuesday so put 20 pounds for the military. Have my police and firefighter flag for the people that lost their lives. So just going out there, doing 26 miles in their honor.
Her black and white American flag has special red and blue stripes.
“The thin red line and thin blue line is for the lost fallen firefighters and policemen,” she said.
Hauf who competes in other endurance events ran a little slower.
“I’m doing a lot of running and some walking,” she said. “So far ran most of the way.”
Drobeck said he recognized Hauf, the wife of a firefighter.
“We want the public to be proud of us and respect us,” Drobeck said. “And hopefully there’s a mutual relationship there. Kudos to her.
Drobeck came in first with a time of 2:44:01. Hauf finished in 5:56:42 while carrying an extra 20 pounds.
-David Jay reporting for MTN News