Crowning the King – 2017

There can only be one…King of the James

Sunday October 22nd marked the third, somewhat annual, King of the James.  What would normally have been empty leaf covered parking lot at Reedy Creek was bustling with excitement.  The king was coming.

A foggy pink and orange sunrise gave way to blue skies and spectacular fall weather. Some last minute registrations and shuffling some gear was all that needed to be sorted out.  The time had come,  King of the James was finally in session.


Last minute preparations. Photo by Rich Young


The trail run through Forest Hill went quick.  This 3.5 mile run opened eyes and broke the spirits of  many first time racers. The fast ones set out on a blistering pace, while others dialed it back to let their lungs settle in for the miles that lay ahead. The twisting, rooty single track was challenging  but enjoyable in the crisp morning. A quick splash into Reedy Creek, as it passed through the tunnels under Riverside drive,  marked the end of the first segment.


The racers are off. Photo by Rich Young


Racers rounding the corner into the transition area were greeted with high fives and cheering. It was time to trade running shoes for knobby tires. Mountain bikes screamed out of the parking lot and made their way onto the Buttermilk Trial. Solo racers realized pretty quickly that the running portion of the race had taken more energy than they anticipated. Still, the excitement ran high and everyone give it their all as they road, pushed and tumbled their way around the James River Park trail system.


Enjoying the Buttermilk trial. Photo by James Vonesh


The Buttermilk and North Bank Trails are deceiving. They offer very technical challenges that are extremely exhausting, especially after completing the running leg of King of the James. Once racers make it back to Reedy Creek for the final transition, it was game on for the whitewater paddle on the lower James.


Racers hitting the water at Reedy Creek. Photo by Rich Young


Beaten down legs were crammed into tiny boats and racers pushed off the shore. With unusually low river levels, lines were tight on the downtown section of the James. Racers had to pick their way though the rocky whitewater as it trickled toward the 14th street take out.


Going big on the low water. Photo by Dave Parrish


In the end, there can only be one, King of the James.  Michael Wilson hit the steps at 14th street with a time of 01:28:20. The Queen of the James, Penelope Davenport made it to the finish shortly after at with a time of 1:45:50.  ‘The Eddy Runners‘  managed to pull off the best overall team relay time of 01:17:20.



The King and Queen. Photo By Rich Young


Thanks to everybody who came out and supported the King of the James! Proceeds from this event raised over $10,000 for the James River Park. That something ever a king can be proud of.

It’s good to be the King!


2617 Michael Wilson 01:28.2
2621 Riley Gorman 01:29.5
2604 Adam Tremper 01:30.1
2622 Karl Schmidt 01:31.4
2610 Michael Stratton 01:33.2
2628 Andrew Lex 01:35.2
2611 Jesse Spangler 01:37.1
2607 Dave Fary 01:37.4
2619 Josh Elder 01:38.4
2614 bryce roberts 01:40.2
2605 Kevin Tobin 01:40.3
2616 Karl Gordon 01:40.4
2612 Harrison Whitten 01:41.4
2618 Thomas Franco 01:42.6
2633 Jon Lugbill 01:43.1
2627 Ned Trice 01:46.4
2632 Jerry DeSanto 01:48.1
2631 Sam Albert 01:49.3
2625 jim Juritsch 01:53.5
2601 Matt Perry 01:56.3
2629 Gregory Boudreau 02:00.2
2608 Jason Judy 02:00.4
2602 Brandon Dysart 02:02.6
2609 Jack Martin 02:03.3
2620 Philip Dawson 02:14.2
2600 Matt Rosenberg 02:29.2
2623 Wayne Jones 02:50.2
2624 Cameron Barber-Jones 02:50.5


1704 Penelope Davenport 01:45.5
1701 Margo Peretz 01:55.5
1705 Katie Lemmert 01:58.2
1700 Jennifer Skrzypek 02:05.3
1706 Shawna Shade 02:13.4
1707 Shelley McLaughlin 02:14.2
1702 Ellie Morris 02:25.3


819 Captain Crunk 01:17.2
800 Eddy Runners 01:17.2
807 Ralphs Army 01:18.0
820 1/3 legal 01:24.3
808 Aquadump 01:26.4
815 Power Strangers 01:27.0
811 Trail Blazers 01:35.1
806 Slow Mosey 01:36.1
818 HoneycuttWolfSwager 01:36.4
823 Log Jam 01:38.1
822 Worst Pace Scenario 01:39.3
814 Not Getting Behind Is The New Getting Ahead 01:40.1
810 Team Dream 01:41.2
801 Team Versace 01:41.6
817 Flippin Frick 01:42.1
809 Tres Adventureros 01:44.2
803 Purple Cobras 01:50.2
804 The Cheeseburger Randies 01:57.1
812 UVA Ladies 01:59.2
821 Baggatt/Browne 02:04.4
816 Plan B 02:07.5
805 River Studies and Leadership 02:12.3
813 Blue Sky Fund 02:21.5

Be good.

-The King

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