Patch Sprint legends Jason Fiegl and Cole Starkey have captured the 2019 winter title, by virtue of a successful traverse of the course, in a time of three hours, 48 minutes, on Wednesday, March 20.
Fiegl extends his record with a ninth winter title, while three-time Patch Sprint champion Starkey has twice shared the winter title. (See split times, records and event history HERE)
"The day was beautiful, but the course was challenging," reviewed Fiegl, who also holds the record for most titles in the main Patch Sprint race, with six. Despite some deep snow on Sugarloaf, and icy patches on both Bare and Pok-O, the pair ran and hiked in trail running shoes, using no poles, no snow shoes, and putting on micro spikes for the final mountain only. "We just decided to power through the best we could," said Starkey. "It wasn't bad at all."
Two other Patch veterans -Tim Singer and Kyle Smith - successfully completed the winter course on the same day, but with a finish time slower than the champs.
The winter patch is informally staged each year between December 21 and March 21. Participants may choose the day, and their own route, but still must summit all four mountains with no outside assistance,
Earlier in the winter there were several unsuccessful attempts, as Singer and Smith, as well as Steph Lylis, David Durant, Katie Moffett and Brian DeGroat were all turned back by challenging conditions, after making it up three mountains.
With their completions this week, Fiegl and Singer have each completed a record 30 Patch Sprints: summer and winter.