91°F
weather icon Clear

Las Vegas woman battles blister, wins Rock ‘n’ Roll half-marathon

Updated February 27, 2022 - 9:00 pm

A 4-inch blister on her right foot nearly kept Ellie Stevens from running in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas half-marathon, and she didn’t decide until Sunday morning to enter the race.

And once she started, Stevens didn’t think she was winning, having resigned herself to second place.

But Stevens, a top British athlete who has lived in Las Vegas for four years, took the lead around the 10-mile mark and beat the rest of the women’s field with a time of 1 hour, 17 minutes, 52 seconds. In second was Danae Dracht of Santa Monica, California, who ran a 1:18:24.

“I’ve run this race for so many years,” Stevens said with a beaming smile. “Finally, I managed to win. I’m happy. I love this race.”

Stevens didn’t intend to run in another half-marathon so soon after competing two weeks ago in Mesa, Arizona. She was sixth in Mesa with a personal-best 1:14:28, and Stevens saw she had a shot to win Sunday.

“It was just my body holding up, a 37-year-old,” Stevens said. “I just thought I would keep going. Then one of the race girls was on the bike, and she was like, ‘You’ve got 10 seconds (lead). You’ve got 15 seconds.’ So I just held strong.”

Canadian Justin Kent dominated the men’s side, running a 1:04:37. John Borjesso of Boulder, Colorado, was second with a time of 1:06:24.

With no one around, Kent, 29, didn’t get the natural push he wanted from the competition and was disappointed with his time. He ran a personal-best 1:03:31 two weeks ago in Vancouver, British Columbia, and through the first 10 kilometers he thought he had a shot to surpass it.

But the combination of feeling sore and the Strip’s neon lights as the sun was setting diverted his attention.

“I think I fell asleep a little bit,” Kent said. “You are so distracted in this straight of a race. I think I maybe slowed down without noticing.”

He said he think his time in Vancouver might be good enough to put him on Canada’s world half-marathon team, but wants to improve that mark to be sure.

“With the pandemic, I missed a lot of opportunities racing,” Kent said. “This year, I’m trying to race a ton.”

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com. Follow @markanderson65 on Twitter.

THE LATEST
 
Turnovers cost Aces against conference-rival Storm

All-Star forward A’ja Wilson had 17 points and 16 rebounds but the Aces were beaten by the Seattle Storm in a matchup between the two best teams in the western conference

Aces All-Star forward signs 2-year contract extension

Aces forward Dearica Hamby is averaging 12.8 points and a career-high 8.9 rebounds this season and was named to the WNBA All-Star team for the second time.

Lon Kruger heading to college Hall of Fame

Roy Williams and Jim Calhoun will join John Beilein and Lon Kruger in a star-studded cast of coaches who will be inducted into the National College Basketball Hall of Fame in November.

Leaving Las Vegas: CJ Cup moves on

The PGA Tour event held in Southern Nevada the past two years is relocating to South Carolina for the 2022 version.