Monday, 28 September 2015

Chase the Coyote race report

So I was back for some major CtC redemption.  The co-RD, Norm Nadon, read my race report of woe and offered me free entry.  When the new 21-ish kilometre long course was announced, I went for that distance.  May as well run as much as I can if I'm going to drive an hour each way!  Excellent swag: CtC buff-type thing, Saucony headphones.
Just like last year, it was a beautiful early fall morning.

My only goal for the race was to finish, and I thought I would be over 3 hours, maybe closer to 3:30.

We're off!  Note the guy in the yellow singlet.

Right away, I fell to the pack of the pack, in a small group of 4.  There was a guy in a 70.3 shirt, he mentioned how he's never done a trail race.  I was surprised he was so slow...I would have thought a trail noob would more likely start out way too fast and the hills would kill them later on.  I ran slowly up the gradual incline that's the first 2K but walked Cardiac Hill.  

Top of the Lookout.
The girl in the Nike shirt came up behind me quickly, maybe she was late to the race.  She bounded over the rocks, and made "woohoo!" sounds every 10 seconds that came out more like deranged owl hoots.  I was too glad to let her pass.

I reached the downhill where I fell and walked carefully through.  I guess I experienced all of the big hills in the 5K portion I ran last year!  The course was mainly singletrack, gentle rolling downhills, very little technical sections.  Even the "roots of all evil" were not scary at all.

The thing that confuses me about trail races is how I can be a midpacker/occasional AG on the road, but near DFL on trails.  I wonder if I fall to the back of the pack at race starts because I hate running trails with people, especially people behind me? I walked very little at this race and really don't think I am that bad of a trail runner - in fact running a similar (slower) pace was good enough for a BT FKT for Virginia!

I passed the guy in the yellow singlet, he was yowling with pain with every step and gasped out "CRAMPS!" in between yowls.  I alerted the next aid station but I actually think he managed to finish.

Throughout the race, I kept catching glimpses of Mr. 70.3, he was maybe 100-200 m ahead but I finally caught him at 18K.  I thought I was last at this point, and passing him motivated me to run strong to the finish to guarantee I wouldn't be last.  I passed one more female walker around 19 or 20K and that was it.

Agnes and her friends Kristin and Delano.

So happy to finally finish and get this lovely medal!

Official chip time: 2:57:25
Field placement: 67/71
AG: 30-39
AG placement: 10/10
Gender placement: 25/27

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Autumn Trail Adventures

Yesterday, Virginia Gingras set a new end-to-end female FKT for the Bruce Trail.  I did not know Virginia personally before joining her for parts of 3 days of her 900 km run, but heard about the need for pacers through a post in a FB group.  I am so honoured to have a small part in her amazing run! I am starting to enjoy these types of runs even more than races.  There is great food, new friends to talk to, and zero pressure.
Day 12, Steve Forrest, Lori Ference pacing Virginia through Cedar Springs.
Rest stop at Kerncliff, with Virginia's sister Velma (blue), Sarah from lulu Oakville (sunglasses) and the Hayden XC team.
The new queen of the Bruce Trail takes a picture with lil ol me!
This weekend, I will be running the long course at Chase the Coyote.  I'm back to atone for my DNF last year and finishing will be the only option!

The next race after that will hopefully be Vulture Bait 25K.  I got accomodations, etc. all figured out, thought I would sign up around NOW but Virginia told me that the race had been sold out for ages.  I am currently 10th on the wait list.

I was going to finish my 2015 season with the Guelph Winter Running Festival HM, but the race starts at 1 pm, and I don't mind running through the early afternoon, but starting then?  hahah, some serious zombie girl would be happening.

Lastly, this week I was invited to a special trail event that is happening in November sometime.  I am pretty sure I'm not allowed to talk about the details yet, but I am stoked to have been invited to something so cool!