I always love covering the annual To Bone and Back 40-mile ultramarathon because there are always incredible stories that come from it and it is packed with local participants.
These last few years have been especially fun to watch. Kyle Baldwin, who I covered his senior year at Bonneville, won an impressive third 40-mile solo overall title today and shattered his previous best for the course. Ryan and Nick Barna, twin brothers and 2017 Skyline graduates I covered in cross-country and track, had the fastest time of the day by completing the course in 4:03:36 to win the two-person division.
Fiery firsts at To Bone and Back
By MARLOWE HEREFORD
An incoming storm didn’t take away from the sizzling day several runners had at the annual To Bone and Back 40-mile ultra marathon and relay Saturday.
Bringing the heat early was Kyle Baldwin, a 2013 Bonneville High School graduate, who finished in four hours, 58 minutes, 12 seconds to claim the 40-mile solo division title for an impressive third consecutive year and his fourth time overall. It was not known after the race Saturday if anyone has ever won three consecutive To Bone and Back solo titles, but Baldwin said it was a special accomplishment.
“It means a lot,” said Baldwin, sporting a red customized To Bone and Back singlet and Boston Athletic Association shorts in the finish area at Summit Orthopedics. “My great grandpa, he used to farm up in Bone. It was great to feel his presence while running.”
Equally impressive was Baldwin’s time. Not only did it break the five-hour barrier – something that has not been done by a solo winner in at least nine years per Post Register records – but it shattered Baldwin’s previous best of 5:37 he ran for the course in 2012.
“I was surprised when I saw it,” Baldwin said of his time. “I wasn’t going for any particular time. I just wanted to run well.”
Almost an hour before Baldwin finished, two other local former high school cross-country and track and field runners finished the course in what would be the fastest time of the day for any division. Decked out in matching teal shirts and shorts with toucans on them, 2017 Skyline graduates and twin brothers Ryan and Nick Barna finished in 4:03:36 in their first To Bone and Back.
Upon receiving confirmation that they ran the fastest time of the day, the twins shared their next goal.
“We’d like to come back next year to break 4,” Nick said, wearing a lei given to him by Skyline runner Dallin Hart.
Members of Skyline’s 2016 4A state championship boys cross-country team, the Barnas are students at Montana State University and said Bozeman has been a good fit for them with plenty of outdoor activities. They ski and also have found friends to run with, and they entered To Bone and Back to have the opportunity to compete again.
“We made it a goal to run every day this summer,” Ryan said. “We’ve been running so much we figured we might as well run a race.”