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2004 Montana Cup Hall of Fame

Patrick Judge

Patrick Judge striding to the finish on his home course in the 2008 Cup in Helena's Spokane Hills.

As a child, Patrick Judge was initiated into racing in the Governor’s Cup road races in Helena, and then he became more deeply involved with running at Helena High School. Judge was a varsity member of the Bengals’ exceptional 1987 cross-country team that steamrolled opponents on the way to an apparent undefeated and unchallenged season. Tragically, their season ended with a heartbreaking state championship loss in front of hometown fans.

Undeterred, Judge packed his racing spikes and moved up to the next level of racing at Colorado College. Judge found his niche and improved his running immensely at the high altitude school in Colorado Springs. Judge graduated college in Physics and shortly thereafter began graduate work in Environmental Studies at the University of Montana.

It was at UM in 1994 that Judge first became aware of the Montana Cup, and he formed an immediate bond to the event. Judge relished the opportunity to organize the Helena men’s team for the Cup, and he did so with great enthusiasm. Judge was unsuccessful in gathering a full team during his first year, but he has since reeled off 13 consecutive years with a full team. Judge’s scoring open-division teams have averaged only 66 points, and they have won the Cup in 2000 and 2004.

Patrick Judge holds 2004 Cup triumphantly over head.

Helena’s first team victory must have tasted sweet to Judge, because he suffered greatly during Missoula’s seven-year stranglehold on the Cup during the 1990’s. At the heart of that Missoula team was John Hartpence, who enjoyed holding the victories over Judge’s head, literally.

Shortly after the 1996 Cup, Hartpence and company invited Judge to celebrate Thanksgiving in Hartpence’s home. Judge was clandestinely seated for dinner on the spot directly under the Montana Cup trophy’s roost. At the end of dinner, Judge finally relented to the suspense and asked where the cup was hidden. Unhalting and jolly laughter filled the room when Judge finally realized his predicament.

Individual Cup titles have eluded Judge, but he has finished second three times. Judge’s individual places did drop off slightly in 2001 after he was inhibited by Graves’ Disease.

Although Judge’s Cup race performances have been excellent, his greatest contributions to the Montana Cup may have come as an innovator. In 2000 and 2001 Judge directed the Montana Cup in Helena, and it was during this time that the Cup matured into the event that we know today. Judge and his organizing committee established an intricate blue print for subsequent groups to follow when hosting the Cup.

The most visible part of Helena’s plan was to supply unique colored jerseys with an official Montana Cup logo for each team. Judge, an idealist, financed the jerseys out of his own pocket because he refused to denigrate the jerseys with multiple sponsor names. Entry fees were then set just high enough to pay for the cost of the jerseys. Two years of impassioned work yielded not one cent for Judge’s philanthropistic group. But it did profit others, and all future Cup runners are indebted.

Patrick Judge charges uphill to the finish of  the 2004 MT Cup at Great Falls.

In his own words:  "For me, the Montana Cup is the perfect event, combining all of the things I love most about running:  challenging courses and competition (on both the individual and team level), camaraderie with runners of all ages and abilities from all across Montana, and the chance to explore the state's varied and majestic landscapes.  Many thanks to Ray [Hunt] for hatching the whole splendid affair years ago, and for nurturing it into its magnificent modern form.  This race has given us precious meaning in an otherwise crazy universe.  Go Blue!"

Patrick Judge's Montana Cup History

Year

Location

Ind. Place

Team Place (pts)

Ind. Place Masters

Masters' Team Place (pts)

Notes

2016

Bozeman

60 3 (99) 5 1 (24)  
2015

Helena

26 2 (51) 3 1 (32) Meet Director
2014

Missoula

31 3 (77) 5 2 (40)  
2013

Butte

33 4 (90) 7 1 (49)  
2012

Kalispell

30 5 (114) 4 3 (67)  
2011 Great Falls 13 2 (69) 2 1 (46)  
2010

Billings

14 1 (32) 2 2 (39)  
2009

Bozeman

34 2 (43) NA 3 (80) Governor Schweitzer pardoned Judge, reinstating the use the first three letters (P-A-T) of Judge's first name ... Patrick.
2008

Helena

19 2 (66) MA 2 (52) Meet Director
2007

Missoula

20 4 (96) NA 4 (70)  
2006

Butte

24 5 (93) NA 3 (54) Led Team Helena's abduction of Montana Cup Co-Founder, Diamond Jim
2005

Kalispell

11 2 (63) NA 2 (44) Falsely embroiled in the Montana Cup's first blood doping scandal;

Attended Cup Camp at Waterloo to form Masters' Cup rules

2004

Great Falls

10

1 (54)

NA

NA Governor Martz ruled Judge's first name must have the letters P-A-T removed, and that he be known only as "rick" as punishment for previewing the Montana Cup course.

Charter member of Montana Cup HOF

2003

Billings

11

2 (58)

NA

NA  

2002

Bozeman

12

4 (90)

NA

NA  

2001

Helena

15

2 (43)

NA

NA Meet Director;

Onset of Graves’ Disease

2000

Helena

2

1 (42)

NA

NA Meet Director;

Headed committee to develop the Montana Cup Mission Statement.

1999

Butte

5

2 (36)

NA

NA  

1998

Butte

2

4 (65)

NA

NA  

1997

Butte

10

3 (59)

NA

NA  

1996

Butte

2

2 (63)

NA

NA  

1995

Missoula

10

4 (98)

NA

NA

 

1994

Missoula

3

Inc. team

NA

NA

Start as Helena’s team organizer