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Logan Ott likely to sustain impact on local running

Mancos resident Logan Ott has been a fixture in the Durango running community for many years, most notably as a former collegiate runner for Fort Lewis College and four-year recipient of the Marc Witkes Memorial Cross Country Scholarship.

In 2011, Ott was named the FLC scholar-athlete of the year and received the Dr. Troy Bledsoe award, which is presented to a senior student/athlete who best exemplifies the balance of excellence in athletics and academics.

“Although not particularly fast at the collegiate level, I have received recognition for having a good balance of brains and brawn,” Ott said.

Ott’s family lived in Cape Town, South Africa, between 1999 and 2003. His father was a diamond geologist and coached cross country at the local primary school. Logan has fond memories of predawn training runs with his father during those years.

“Dad was my first running role model,” Ott said. “Seeing him run all the time convinced me to try it.”

Ott’s first real competitive running experiences were in 2003, when, as a freshman, he ran for Mancos High School.

“I was so inspired by other Mancos kids, like Clayton Smith and Ian Mullikin, who actually made it to run in college,” Ott said.

Another important role model was Brianne Lippoldt-Nelson, who was the distance coach for the MHS track team during Ott’s senior year.

“Brianne’s presence was a big inspiration for our team,” Ott said. “She encouraged me to join FLC cross country and told me about the Marc Witkes Scholarship.”

Lippoldt-Nelson is an All-American FLC cross country alumna and currently competes for the Boulder Running Club Adidas Team.

Over the years, Ott has won numerous local races, the Steamworks Half Marathon and the Community Cares 5K to name a couple. Most recently, he won the newly resurrected Durango Double marathon.

“The Durango Double was my first marathon,” Ott said. “I wanted to try something new.”

Already setting his sights on another marathon, he said, “I’m thinking about running P.F. Chang’s Rock ’N’ Roll Arizona Marathon in January in Phoenix. The competition, low elevation and flat terrain will be great for fast times.”

Running is like an adventure for Ott. He still gets excited about encountering animals along the route, watching the seasonal changes and running on windy obstacle-filled trails.

“Although most of my runs are in the forest, I do track workouts and road races because it helps me increase my speed and accomplish new personal records,” Ott said.

A civil engineer by trade, Ott worked on a land survey crew during the summer and currently is seeking an engineer-in-training position.

Ott currently runs for “Team Earth Elite” as part of the Mancos Project, a running club that values the importance of maintaining a sustainable lifestyle. Members believe in good health, community involvement through running and strive to become more sustainable in their daily lives.

I am confident we will be seeing Ott’s name among the top runners in Colorado as he continues to pursue his passion and tackle new running adventures.

Reach Marjorie Brinton at runswim55@gmail.com.

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