Montera Gets Entry Into Ascent, Chance To Win Her Age Division

by | Aug 1, 2003 | News Articles

August, 2003 Fit to be Tied Column

From the Pueblo Chieftain
by Gary Franchi


Montera Gets Entry Into Ascent, Chance To Win Her Age Division

It took a little preferential treatment for Jill Montera to get herself entered in this Saturday’s Pikes Peak Ascent.

The 36-year-old Pueblo West runner has been on a training schedule aimed at doing well in next April’s Boston Marathon, for which she has qualified. Her training includes competing throughout the year in a number of road races, among them the first two legs of the Triple Crown of Running in the Colorado Springs area.

After doing both the Garden of the Gods 10-Mile Run in June and the Summer Roundup 12K in July, Jill found herself leading the 35-39 age division in the Triple Crown. With a 3:23 lead over her closest pursuer, she would seem to have a decent shot at winning her age division in the series, right?

Well, there was just one problem. The third leg of the Triple Crown includes either the Pikes Peak Ascent or the ascent portion of the Pikes Peak Marathon, and Jill never intended to run those and, hence, never registered for either of them. The Pikes Peak registrations closed months ago after the race fields filled.

That’s where the preferential treatment came into play. Jill learned that Triple Crown race officials save 10 slots for elite runners, and she was given one of those slots three weeks ago.

“That kind of changed the whole thing,” she said of her training regimen.

To get used to the climb, she and Katherine Frank of Pueblo did the entire 13.1-mile Ascent course in a training run recently. Both of them will be running the Ascent for real Saturday along with a number of other Pueblo-area competitors.

The starting time is 7 a.m. Saturday in Manitou Springs. The round-trip marathon (26.2 miles) will be held the following day.

Montera is a relative newcomer to running. She took up the sport three years ago after she had two kids and wanted to drop some pounds.

“I wanted to do something that would enable me to lose weight the quickest,” she explained of her choice of activities.

From the start, she kept a training log and would insert a gold star on any day that she ran at least two miles. After two years of running, she has gotten really serious about it as shown in her race performances.

Besides her times in the Garden of the Gods 10-Mile Run (1:14:09, 9th female) and Summer Roundup 12K (55:13, 12th female) being just two examples. She also ran a 1:18:31 in the 10-mile division of The Pueblo Chieftain-sponsored Spring Runoff early in the year and a 21:00 5K in the Women’s Distance Festival last month.

Much of her recent success is attributable to a stepped-up training program that is modeled after one she found on the Runner’s World web site. It includes tempo runs that develop speed as well as long runs that she does with hard-core running friends Matt Sherman and Ben Valdez.

This week is taper week for Saturday’s test. Then she’ll be getting back into her regular training mode for Boston.

For that, she needs no preferential treatment, having qualified with a 3:39 time in the Houston HP Marathon in January.


  • A popular race in this region is the Watermelon 10K Run, which is part of the annual Watermelon Day festival in Rocky Ford. The race date this year is Aug. 23, with registration starting at 6:30 a.m. and the race at 7 o’clock.
  • The Las Animas/Bent County Chamber of Commerce will again conduct the Dam Race this year at the John Martin Reservoir in Hasty, but they’ve moved the 10K race date to Sept. 7 after having it in November last year. It will have a 9 a.m. start. Entry forms are at the Pueblo YMCA.


  • Michael Orendorff of Pueblo placed second in the 50-54 age division of the tough Boulder Peak Triathlon held Sunday. The event included a 1.5K swim, 42K bike and 10K run, and Mike had splits of 25:28, 1:12:17 and 41:33 while finishing in 2:21:11, good for 123rd place overall in the field of more than 1,300 competitors. His daughter Patricia, a student at the University of Colorado, finished in 2:59:21.
  • Gerald Puls won the 70-79 age division in the Colorado State Games Triathlon at the Air Force Academy. Puebloans Mike Archuleta and Dr. Rocky Khosla were other local finishers there.
  • Three young members of the Pueblo Swim Club competed in the IronKids Triathlon in Louisville last month a day after competing in the local City Meet. Brittany Mathews took second among 11-year-old girls, Loren Dorsey-Spitz was third among 12-year-olds girls and Tanner Krall was fifth in the 12-year-old boys division. The senior division that competed in included a 200-meter swim, 10K bike and 2K run.
    Loren, a seventh-grader at Pitts Middle School, is following in the successful footsteps of older siblings Ryan and Jenna, who did several triathlons just a few years ago, with Ryan even competing in the U.S. Junior Nationals in Australia. Both Ryan and Jenna are now attending the Air Force Academy. Loren was third in her age division in the national triathlon championships last year.
  • Local dentist Tomas Duran wanted a new challenge and got it last month in the 5430 Duathlon at the Boulder Reservoir. Duran was 24th overall in the event that included a 56-mile bike sandwiched between a pair of 6.5-mile runs. His overall time was 5 hours and 26 minutes.

Upcoming Area Races

  • Aug. 23 – Tunnel Drive Run (Prediction Series race), 5M, 7:30 a.m., Canon City (784-6514).
  • Sept. 21 – Hot to Trot Run, 5K, 8 a.m., HARP (947-3682).
  • Oct. 11 – Soaring Eagles Run/Walk, 5K, 8 a.m., CSU-P campus (489-2605).

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