Declared by her race colleagues as ‚Äúsimply the best,‚ÄĚ Marie Boyd takes a photo-op break at the Buttermilk Road aid station during the 2006 Bishop High Sierra Ultramarathon, the first and only BHS Ultra Boyd had the opportunity to run during her 20-year tenure as the Ultra‚Äôs race director. Photo courtesy Marie Boyd
After 20 years of service as race director for the annual Bishop High Sierra Ultramarathon, Marie Boyd has stepped down with regret and relief, leaving a vacancy that will be difficult to fill.
The race director job, now open to interested qualified applicants, is pivotal to the BHS Ultra, which is Northern Inyo Hospital Foundation‚Äôs biggest fundraiser. ‚ÄúThe ultra has raised more than $120,000 over the last 18 years,‚ÄĚ Boyd said, bringing in more than $15,000 this year alone.
That money furthers the foundation‚Äôs mission to ‚Äúsupport the hospital‚Äôs healing and life-saving efforts,‚ÄĚ Foundation Board President Maggie Egan said, adding that the race also brings revenue to Bishop, as most entrants are out-of-towners who bring family and friends along, who shop, dine and require accommodations.
Boyd is largely responsible for transforming what started 20 years ago as a race with 47 runners loping through six inches of snow in¬† ‚Äúunseasonably cold temperatures‚ÄĚ into the 300-runner ultra held this past May 18, Egan said. Entrants come from all over the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Canada, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Japan and Switzerland, Boyd added.
(Read more in the Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013 edition of The Inyo Register.)