Heineck and Mendoza Victorious in Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon

From Press Release –

On a brilliant sunny day in the Willamette Valley, Carre Heineck and Mario Mendoza shone brightest of all, finishing ahead of a strong field of runners in the Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon.  Heineck, the 2010 champion from Portland, defended her title by completing the course in 1:18:43, easily besting last year’s time of 1:22:17 and defeating second place finisher Natalie Bak of Bend (1:19:57).  In the men’s field, Mario Mendoza, also of Bend, defeated Tahir Chakisso from Clackamas, Oregon, in a tight race.  Mendoza broke loose from Chakisso after mile 11, finishing in 1:09:43, only 13 second ahead.

Conditions were spectacular for the nearly 1,600 runners from 45 different states who traveled to the heart of Oregon’s Wine Country in Yamhill County in the Willamette Valley. Runners completed the 13.1 mile course from Stoller Vineyards in Dayton, to the town of Carlton, where they were treated to a post-race wine and music festival.  The top three places in each age group receive wine at the awards ceremony.

Mendoza and Heineck both took home $500 checks from West Coast Bank, a 5L bottle of wine from Ken Wright Cellars, a Ball Watch, and an engraved Decanters trophy.  “I wanted to run the first eight miles as fast as I could, knowing I had the gravel section ahead,” said Heineck. “But I felt strong and was able to keep a good pace all the way.”  Mendoza and Chakisso were also impressed by the course.  “It was beautiful out there, what a great day.” said Mendoza.  “I’m glad I decided to enter.”

The Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon is the fourth of five events in the Wine Country Half Marathon series.  Produced by Destination Races of Sonoma, California, the Wine Country Half Marathon series also includes events in Santa Barbara Wine Country, Napa-to-Sonoma, Healdsburg and Loudoun County, Virginia.  For more information and results visit www.destinationraces.com or www.run4oregonwine.com.

Results

Men
1.  Mario Mendoza, Bend, OR, 1:09:42:16
2.  Tahir Chakisso, Clackamas, OR, 1:09:55:27
3.  Jason Griffiths, Portland, OR, 1:11:04:39

Women
1.  Carre Heineck, Portland, OR, 1:18:42:81
2.  Natalie Bak, Bend, OR, 1:19:57:05
3.  Eva Vail, Portland, OR, 1:21:24:80

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