For Jim Ulvestad, placing third in the 1981 Dannon Two Bridges 36-Mile Run in Alexandria was not good enough.
So the 32-year-old distance runner from Charlottesville built up a 150-yard lead late in the race and cruised to victory yesterday in 3 hours 36 minutes 22 seconds. Ray Hintz of Madison, Wis., was second in 3:37.49.
Ulvestad and Hintz were among the early leaders, pacing the pack of James Ochse, Bruce Robinson, Ed Foley and Joel Braatz through the first 10 miles in 59.30. In the next five miles, Braatz and Robinson, who finished third (3:39.06) and fourth (3:42.15), respectively, dropped off the pace.
After the leaders completed the first half of the course, returning through Old Town in Alexandria, Ulvestad and Hintz began to pull away from Ochse. Ulvestad passed through the 25-mile point in 2:28.54, ahead by five yards. Over the next five miles, he increased his lead to 50 yards.
"I took about a 10-yard lead between the 27- and 29-mile marks," said Ulvestad. "A mile later, I picked up the pace and he (Hintz) couldn't go. Then I tried to hold on to the finish."
"My legs started to go around the 31-mile mark," said Hintz, 26. "The weather was hot down here compared to the 40 degrees we've been training in in Madison."
Mary Ellen Williams of Darnestown, Md., lead all the way in the women's division, breaking the course record with a time of 4:27.53. Pam Barowsky held the previous course record of 4:31.23, set in 1980.
Twelve-year-old Jennifer Amyx finished in second place in 4:31.05. She ran the Two Bridges race in 1980, placing third in 4:46.33.
Carole Williams of Washington placed third in 4:50.11. Williams ran 3:15 at this year's Grandma's Marathon, and has run a seven-hour 50 miler.