Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Chippewa Moraine 50K

The Chippewa Moraine 50K: 10 LPTR’s take Chetek by Storm
Marty's Collective Race Report...

On a rainy Friday night, 9 LPTR folks headed up to Chetek Wisconsin to run the Chippewa Moraine 50K Trail Race. Joel added a 10th as a welcome late edition to the gang. We had a little of everything going, from the multi-race veterans Brad, Julie, and Angela, to the speedster Joel, to the first timer Jose, to the prepping for Ice Age 50 milers Marcel, Steve, me, and Cobbie, prepping for Kettle 100, and finally Troy M to round out the field.
Below, find collective race reports except Jose’s. Being a first timer, I wanted to give him his own air time to tell his story, so look for that soon.

Place  AG group

Joel Lammers

Brad Birkholz

Julie Treder

Marcel Uttech

Marty Kanter-Cronin

Steve Poulter

Jose Villegas

Cobbie Behrend

Angela Barbera

Troy Malinowski

Marcel “Briar Patch” Uttech  (6:03:38)
Ah, the Chippewa 50k…this was a special race for me this year because it marked my one year anniversary of running ultras…it all started with a good hurting handed down from this race last year. I was glad to return this year and shave off 30 min, but most importantly I was glad to return with even more running friends to share it with. It was great spending some time on those awesome trails with other LPTR’s, especially running into Jose a couple of times as he endured his first ultra…seems like it was only yesterday when he called me out of the blue to join us running out at Lapham Peak…for a painful 7! Now he sits with an ultra under his belt and another one on the horizon…my how time flies. Jeff Allen did an awesome job again with the race, and it is no wonder that this race continues to grow…
My race went well, with some mild cramping coming on around mile 25 I managed to still keep it moving forward pretty well. I had wanted to run up the hill at the end like “The Blur” Egnarski did last year, but just couldn’t do it…not happening- maybe next year. The ride both up and down were a lot of fun considering the great company as the race recaps were brought up and laughed upon…memories to carry me into the next race, and remind me why I continue to love running ultras. Even as I type, the fading pain in my legs brings a smile.

“Shoeless” Joel Lammers, (4:37:57, 9th overall 1st AG)
It was a last minute decision to run based the beautiful weather forecast and the encouragement of fellow LPTRs.  I was going to be in the area anyway (Winona, MN) so I talked my brother, who was traveling with me, into driving over to the CM50K.  The weather man was wrong and the day turned out to be a cool and humid spring day.  My lungs were still burning from the severe gas that my brother had in the hotel room the night before.   The course was in pretty good shape considering all the rain we had the night before with some shoe sucking mud holes.   I ran much of the first ½ of the race with Brad.  He was running a nice pace and only took 2 face plants.   At the ½ way point he told me to go ahead because he had a couple of hot chicks at the aid station who were feeding him grapes and boiled potatoes.   I got to see the infamous “Fat Rabbit” at the 2nd and 4th aid station. A true ultramarathoning legend.   I ran a pretty consistent race picking off about 5 people between miles 16 and 19.  After that I didn’t see another runner for the last 12 miles. It was a beautiful course that included lakes, hills, valleys, streams and of course Angela and Julie.  A 50K that I would definitely recommend. 
Steve “Freight Train” Poulter (PR of 6:11:41)
My plans going into Chippewa 50K were to make it my last big build up run for my first attempt at a 50 miler at Ice Age in May.  After a great road trip to Chetek and lining up for the start, Jose and I hung out for most of the first 9 miles holding a good 11 min/mile pace.  It just felt great, and the course was good trail, easy to cruise on. 
Soon after the mile 9 aid station the course fell apart with large spans of mud pits lined on both sides with briars, it was mud or blood for a few miles.  Jose and I were surprised around mile 12 when Marcel came running up behind us after a pit stop, we ran for about a half mile and it was great to catch up on how his race was going.  It wasn’t long before Marcel took off and Jose and I stretched out again.  From there I started seeing the LPTR gang heading back to the finish, Joel, Brad, Julie, and Marty.  I ran into the turn around aid station and found Marcel finishing up for his return trek, Jose rolled in as I rolled out.  I made quick work out of all aid stations the whole day, I worked hard to catch up and pass those that were close behind; I wasn’t going to camp out at the aid station and have to repeat that work again.
I pushed on, and around mile 24 or so I saw Marty on the horizon, I caught up and we ran together for a while, even got to witness some fine acrobatics by Marty when he caught a root.  Luckily he was ok, I wanted to bolt, and I took off again.  I pushed to the point that I couldn’t run much anymore, it was run or hurl.  Closing in on the 29 mile mark I looked back and saw Marty coming up the trail.  I stepped off to let him by, but he wouldn’t have any of it.  He wanted to hang with me and that was cool, I needed some encouragement and we walked/ran for a while. 
Marty moved on around the 30 mile mark and I ran on to the final climb.  This lung sucking, leg draining climb was all I had, hands on knees.  I turned and ran through the finish, 6:11.  It was great to finish and knock over 33 minutes off my PR.  It was a great weekend and great race with the LPTR crew.

Cobbie “OOoooh Yeah” Behrend (PR of 6:56:38)
Usually when I run a race I start in the back, and stay pretty conservative.  For whatever reason, that wasn't the order of the day.  I started out sore, and kept things slow for the first 6 miles, but then didn't keep it there. Perhaps in hind sight I should have.  On the flip side it gave me some experience of struggling in the middle of a race, which I've never had.  Miles 7-20 were a breeze, but then I lost all energy.  I could have used a gel or two or three, but wasn't prepared in that department.  There were three miles of struggling (2 being hiking pace), trying different things, some grossness involving a tree, leaves, and gloves that were abandoned (Joy asked: why didn't you just wash them if it was so wet out there? Yeah... no).  Then things perked up, with 4 miles at a slightly better than walking pace.  The last 3.5 miles were smooth, with each one being faster than the previous ... up to the final hill, which, unlike my new hero Jose Villegas, I didn't run.  Jose killed it! 

Marty “The Driver” KC (6:08:33)
Race day wasn’t shaping up too well, as it had rained steadily all Friday and through Saturday morning,  The rain stopped 5 minutes before race start and left us all with near perfect running weather (and a slightly muddy course):  40’s and cloudy. The course was dirt single track through the beautiful Chippewa Moraine, and was a great surface with little rock and root to dodge.  Still, on the return of the out and back course I managed to take a tumble (my first ever) and knot up my hamstring in the process. No harm, done, I soldiered on as I was using this as my last long training run before the Ice Age 50. I think Marcel and I ran about 2/3 of this race together, and I ran the last 6 miles or so with Steve. We all landed about the same time at around 6 hours.  Great time, and my favorite memories are: 1)  Our motel room was so small my rommie Steve had to sleep with his feet in the fridge and our bathroom was so small you sit on the turlet, brush your teeth and shower at the same time;  2) Pre-race dinner Cobbie making Julie laugh so hard I thought we’d need a mop to clean up after her; 3) Hearing Brad tell the story of how Joel lost BOTH shoes, simultaneously, in one of the many mud pits during the race. 4) Seeing Jose finish his first ultra, Steve and Cobbie getting PR’s, and hanging with a whole bunch of LPTR folks!  Ah, good times!

Angela “Who Needs Training?” Barbera (7:06:29)
Great race, good friends, perfect weather, beautiful trail. Chippewa 50k is always a great party and this year was no exception. Going into the race under trained I was not sure what to expect from the day – but was satisfied with my finish. Great to see so many LPTR runners there. Everyone looked so strong on their way back. Congrats to all!

Troy “The Rear View “Malenowski (7:50:34)
The Chippewa 50K was a cool and damp morning. I was wandering back and forth on proper wear. At the last minute, I walked to the line, listening to the last race announcements and seeing the fellow LPTRs ready and in race mode. “WOW, Lammers dared to venture up!!!” The start began with a steep downhill, we rolled at a fast pace, as fast as our legs and openings would allow. As we neared the half mile mark, I came up on Julie and we discussed the slow snail’s pace Joel was setting.  As we continued to gain on Joel, He gave me a “runner’s High Five” and said, “settle back as we don’t need to lose any LPTRs up here …… I’m from Lake Country, so I will take the lead; you take the rear and watch for our well-being”.
So, I settled back and allowed our LPTR team members to advance. The team was running strong, Julie quickly passed again, Brad zipped by unnoticed, Marcel and Marty fell into their grooves, and Steve showed no slowing as he conquered the hills with Jose following with great strength. And at mile 9, Cobbie made sure to rush past me at the Aid Station. 
After going through the field and onto the downhill dirt road, we reentered the single track raspberry bush lined trails. While running, I looked back to see a “Running Tour” being conducted with about 7 or 8 runners. I could hear the tour guide explaining the  Ice Age Trails,  and talking with the tour members ……. And then I realized the Tour Guide was Angela! I was wondering if the Cabin Industry was down in this economy, until she said all her tour profits were going to Brad’s Ultra – Lonely Life (BULL) of trail running and races.
 As I approached the thirteen mile mark, I was able to insure all of the team was safely accounted for as one by one each ran past in the opposite direction. Unfortunately, Angela lost her running tour group when the Barefooted Mud Stomp portion started.
 After the turn around, I ran the next six miles without seeing a soul, I was sure I was on course as the 130+ footprints made the course easy to follow in the wet dirt, grass and mud. But I was experiencing a “Lonely Life” of an hour. At the Mile 22 aid station. Some runners caught up and we quickly proceeded.  One runner being “Shelly”, the 2011 runner to beat.
 At Mile 25, I was singing the theme song to the “Munsters” as my shoes felt like Herman’s boots.
 I got my heavy feet to the Nature Center again, but on the REAR SIDE with 2 miles to go. I ran as best possible…. And the worst part …… For the last mile EVERYONE can see you walking, running and crawling. As I was a half mile from the finish, I heard a ROAR “Run Troy, RUN” …. I thought “The entire LPTR team is safe and back, and cheering me on for the great “Safety” work I did. I give it my all, finishing the front field at an 8:17 pace …. Roars continuing as some of my family meet me half way down the starting / finishing hill” and my son grabbed my hand and ran the last hundred yards with me.
 Looking forward to meeting all the LPTRs, thanking them for the cheers, having a beer and reporting all were accounted for. I looked around and saw no one, I found out the “Shelly” beat me by minutes, after running the hill twice because there were 4 shirts left still. I was then told that “your LPTR friends left after the beer was gone”
 GOOD RACE ALL! And thank you Cobbie for letting Julie know the team had finished and was leaving. Mission accomplished and most importantly, SAFELY!!!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Clinton Lake 30 Mile... Marty's Road Trip Race Report

Marty's Race Report....  Road trips are always fun, but what makes them all the better is when you share it with a bigger group (road trip of one = no fun) And there is no better group to share it with than a bunch of LPTR folks!

So, Friday night (waaaaay back on March 25th) Hans, Christine, Joel and I headed down to Clinton Lake for a 30 mile race in Hans’ van (which also doubles as a toaster. Really. Hans related the story of how much bread he has carried in the back, and if you’ve seen his van, you would agree with me. If he had a sun roof, he’d even have a place for the bagel to pop out. Anyway).

So we drove down to Clinton Lake, had dinner on the way (at which Hans ate his weight in catfish, and Christine ate a piece of lettuce) and get to the lovely Wye motel. Clean and cheap, and if you discount the fact that Joel had to heat his room with a hair dryer (really he did) very comfortable.

Clinton Lake is a small race, with about 200 people running either a 10 mile (1 loop) or the 30 mile (3 loops) race. Of the 125 people in the 30 mile race, there were 84 finishers; I suspect that being a loop course encourages ‘some’ people to sign up and run a variety of distances, without regard to an official finish (oh yeah, like me for instance)..

The day of the race was overcast and chilly (37 F), but still had a hint of Spring in the air. The wind was a little brisk at times, and being run around a lake, could bite a bit on one side (of the lake that is, and your face for that matter). So we get started at 7:30 am, a half hour ahead of the 10 miler racers. The first section is up a bit of a road hill, and then heads off into the woods for some nice single track. The race course is undulating but nothing that significant in terms of elevation; it’s much like our own Kettle Moraine in that respect, except without any rocks. The dirt was soft, and it was easy to build speed down many of the long gradual inclines. The uphills were usually short and steep and power walking was the order of the day for many of these.

So my race. I went into this one undertrained, but feeling like I had gotten my long runs in to do at least most of it. I wanted to avoid going into the season of running feeling beat up from too much hard racing (like last year).  I planned on running at least two 10 mile loops, with a late decision on whether to do a third one or not. I ran well for the first lap, coming in at 1 hour 42 minutes for a 10 min/mile average. Starting the second lap I was feeling pretty good and liking my chances of doing all three. …. Finished two laps ……and then started my little self talk about what to do next, keep going or be happy with a 3:25ish for 20 miles (and I was currently in 4th place in my AG and 15th overall). In the end I decided that 20 was good for the day, and a warm van, food drink and a book were called for. Officially my first ever DNF, but one of choice not injury or necessity.

Joel ran really well on the day, winning the race overall in an exciting race with the top female athlete Kelsey Jones. Joel worked hard at keeping her in sight through out the first two laps, and finally saw his opportunity to pass her with less than 1 mile remaining in his race. Christine previously had held the Clinton Lake 30 mile record, until Kelsey Jones on this day ran it in a smoking 4:04:25, one minute and 20 seconds behind Joel’s winning time of 4:03:04. Joel then proceeded to walk into the lake where he soaked his legs in some chilly water! Brr…

Christine coming off recent injury ran the first two loops at a good pace, coming to the start area around 3 hours for the first 20 miles. She then waited around 20 minutes for a friend of hers to come in and ran her third lap with him for a finish time of 5:10, good enough for 13th overall, 4th female overall and first in her AG. (I couldn’t find any pics of Christine. She must have outran the cameras).

Hans ran well, as he and I leap frogged all day, he looked strong. The third lap was a bit of a struggle for Hans, as he had skipped the mid course aid station on all three laps, and had not taken any S caps during the race. It was an easy thing to skip given the temperatures of the day. So his third loop he gutted out and still finished in 6:05, good for 43 place and an AG award.

We stayed for the awards ceremony and some food after the race. Nice to see the LPTR’s receive their awards for a races well run. Awards and finishers medals were unique hand made clay fired items: Joel received a nice serving platter, and Christine and Hans received mugs, and the finishers medal was a small leaf medallion.

Trip home uneventful, good conversation, story telling and kibitzing. I drove the toaster to give Hans some leg recovery time. Nice race and I recommend it as a good warm up spring race for any LPTR’s next year.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Dual-Action Double Chubb 50k Reports...

Joel Lammers reports...

Weather: 40’s with high humidity and windy.
Trail: Mostly single track river bluffs and flats along the Merrimac River, somewhat muddy. 
LPTR Injury Report: Probable: Crawford (heel), Lammers (knee).  Out: Grabowski (leg & back)

Race Report: Christine Crawford & I met our friend Don Frichtl in Bloomington, IL and we headed down to St. Louis.  Just outside of St. Louis, we drove through some torrential down pours which would make for a slick track the next morning.

On race day, we woke up to a misty, cool & windy day.  When we arrived at the start, the woods tamed the winds somewhat which made it a good temperature for running.  The race started and we encountered some pretty good footing considering the rain they had received the days before. The bluff section was mostly gravel & rock so it drained well but the wet rocks were very slippery.  When we hit the river flats section the trail was very muddy in some parts and very runnable in others.  As the day went on some areas
seemed to dry out and others seemed to get more slippery.

Don lasted about 8 minutes when he slipped on a rock and twisted his foot. His day was over. Christine ran very strong all day. A good steady pace that earned her 1st OA (4:34) and her 6th DC victory. I went out at a conservative steady pace and worked my way through the field to win the masters and 3rd OA (4:14). I also finished my 13th consecutive DC.

After the race we feasted on grilled meat and Anheuser Bush products.  Not too many people stuck around due to the cool weather so we hopped in the car and headed back home. 

This is a very fun race with a course that is very runnable yet challenging.  We hope to have the LPTR’s well represented again next year.  

Christine's version...

DOUBLE CHUBB 50K           

It seems that every year, I’m getting back into shape at this time.  I was a little nervous going into this event because just a week prior, I became extremely ill on a training run with Robert.  Turns out I came down with the flu but I wasn’t so sure my stomach was ready for a 50k.  I’m also nervous in general when it comes to ultras now because I never know what the heck I’m going to fracture next so that fear limits me and now I find that I can’t run downhill if there is so much as a stick in the way.  I just freeze up.  I guess until you’ve experienced it it’s hard to explain the level of fear you have that you may fall and really hurt yourself.  Or maybe I’m just wising up as I get older? 

Joel has run Double Chubb every year since its inception (I think 11 years now).  I’ve run the event eight times and each year it’s a different experience.  This year was a muddy, humid, drizzly cool year.  After I got my first fall out of the way I backed off and collected myself.  Nothing was broken, just a bruised shin and minor cuts.  I was surprised at how solid the men’s field was.  I think Joel was in sixth after 8 miles.  I knew that would change because he was the more experienced runner of the group in my opinion.  When Joel and I passed by each other (the run is two 15.5 mile out and backs) he told me I was running strong.  I didn’t concern myself with the time, never looked at my watch and only knew that I ran the first 15.5 miles in 2:14.  I’ve run it faster so I didn’t think it was that strong.  As Joel was running back toward the finish, it was no surprise that he picked off a few guys to finish in 3rd with a time of 4:14:??.  I was slow from miles 15.5 to 24 but then felt great and flew through the last 7 miles.  

Nice warm showers to wash of the caked mud at the end and some good eats.  The SLUGS put on a terrific event.  If you’d like to join us next year, mark your calendar.  The event opens January 1st KEVIN and it filled in 10 hours this year KEVIN.  

Enjoy the photos taken by my friend Don who unfortunately had to drop after just one mile; he twisted his ankle pretty bad and could not continue.  

More Madness - Brad's Mad-City 100k Report...

More than anything I consider myself a trail runner but every now and then hitting the road can be a good thing. Especially with MadCity 100K. No roots or rocks to trip over, you don’t even have to worry about carrying water, just run. Personally I think the MadCity course is a good one. Not flat or straight, a couple of hills, really nice. The down side is you have to do the loop 10 times.

The race started out chilly but for the first time I’ve been doing this race I knew that it was going to be a warm day. I’ll save you the loop by loop replay and keep it shortish.
Went out on the first loop a bit fast. I think it was around 8 minute pace. Which for me was fast considering it was 62 miles long. Just about a ½ mile from the start is the first of 2 maybe 3 hills of considerable length.  In normal circumstances I would be walking up this hill but in this case I was running it. Just a casual run not with any real effort.  At the top it’s a left turn downhill on a city street another left through a park, more left turns and you’re through bike paths, along a golf course to the second hill. So do I run it or walk? Hell I’m running it. Couple more left turns and we are going through the Arboretum.  Coming up to the 5K aid station is the 3rd hill on the course, still running hills.  Walked through the aid station just to slow myself down and grab a gel. Finished the first loop in just under 49 minutes, yikes kinda fast but so what, go with it while you can I say. Got rid of my bottle, sleeves and gloves and headed out for lap 2.

My lap times were a bit more reasonable, keeping them under an hour all the way through the 6th lap. Had a 4:23 50K, which I thought may have been a bit fast but so what you have to stop questioning yourself and just go. At this point I’m still running the hills and not considering walking them.

Going into the 7th lap was where I started to slow down. Let’s just say the whole 7th loop hurt. But I continued to run the whole thing.  Going into lap 8 things were getting better. I had my bottle with my own special drink and it may have started to kick in.

Laps 7 through 9 were just over an hour but I was still running the hills and walking through the aid stations. After finishing the 8th loop there is a mental boost knowing that there are only 2 laps to go and it was time to push it home.

That last loop was a tough one, but knowing it was the last one made me push the pace with whatever I had left. There was a guy just in front of me and I used him as the carrot. It took me until the last half mile but I caught him as well as another guy and just hammered it home.  Crossed the line in 9:30:50, found a spot in the grass and collapsed. Couldn’t believe what I had just done. 9:30 is a PR by about  1hr. 25 mins.  OMG, WTF, and whatever else that came out of my mouth.

Timo and his crew put on another class event. Big thanks to them. Wish I would have caught her name, but there was a woman at the top of the hill just past the golf course that must have been there for hours. Probably past her 3 times and every time she was there clapping and yelling for everyone. That kind of stuff is a huge help when you’re out there hurting. Thank you to her.

I’ve recently been asked this question, so here are some numbers
So far this year:
12 races
7 of these races were Ultras (hopefully #8 this weekend at Chippewa)
404 racing miles

Sunday, April 17, 2011

3 Days of Syllamo...and 3 Reports!

Day 1: Julie's 50k Race Report...

3 Days of Syllamo got a kick start at 9AM on Friday with the 50K.  It was supposed to be a beautiful day, with sun and temps to reach the 60s.  There were guys at the start line, shirtless.  I thought, it will get warm... but that warm?!?!  Turned out, they were the smartest dressed people out there!  After a few words from Steve Kirk, the RD, we were off... climbing a nice, long hill.  Everyone was pretty cramped together on the single-track, so I just ducked into the train.  Cassie and Brad were both long gone... so I just ran with whatever crowd was in front of me.

This is a tough race to run.  You want to conserve energy, because you know you have two more days of running (one of those days consisting of a 50-miler!)... yet, you are so excited to finally get running after a long road trip, you can't help but want to RUN.  I just ran as to how I felt... which was good.  The voice inside my head kept saying "You're gonna pay for this tomorrow!"... but I just drowned that voice out with conversations with other runners and Brad’s wise words of “Worry about that tomorrow!”.  All right…

The 50K course was an out-n-back route, so you got a chance to see all the runners out there.  I had a chance to run with some great people along the way.  There was Nick from Kansas who is chasing a goal of running 30 ultras by the time he’s 30… next March.  His schedule was thrown off slightly last year by back surgery… but he got back to running pretty darn quickly.  And running strong!  Amazing!  There was also Karrie from Arkansas, who’s cool tattoo on her lower leg spawned some interesting conversation that helped to pass the time… and led to some great company in the later races.  I was also able to meet up with Brad along the way, to splash through the creek crossing with.  (What was a means to cool the feet on my run turned out to be a means to fill up water bottles along the way for some people.  Thank goodness for Nathan backpacks!)  I was also able to see how Cassie’s race was going for her, as we hooted and hollered as she passed by on her way back.  Good sign if she has the energy to make some noise on the run!

Where there were people to run with on the way out, the crowd thinned out on the way back… leaving me to run pretty much by myself.  Sometimes it doesn’t work out, where negative thoughts creep in and remind you of how tired you are… but today was not that day.  I was feeling really strong… really positive… and just soaked up the beautiful scenery when I had a chance (which wasn’t all that often considering the very rocky terrain!).  Then there was the nice conversations at the aid stations with Jerry from St Louis and Liz, the RD’s wife and great motivator.  I tend to spend my time at aid stations NOT eating, but chatting with the awesome volunteers.  Probably not what you should be doing during races… but it is definitely enjoyable.

The coolest part of this course is in the last mile.  It is downhill to the start/finish area where the prior finishers are out there to cheer you in.  You can hear the noise from the top of the hill, pulling you in.  What was a struggle at the start of the race, you can now fly down to the finish.  It’s just a great feeling!

Brad, Cassie, and I all did the mandatory ice bath in the river across the way from the start/finish area.  Why is it that you cannot WAIT to get to that creek while you are running the race… but dread it once you step in the frigid water.  Brrrr… but a definite help for the later races!

Day 2: Brad's 50 Mile Race Report...

When I got done with the 50K the day before I was ready to be done for the rest of the weekend. Even came close to dropping. But after a soak in the creek and a night’s sleep I toed the line for day 2 and 50 miles. Still feeling the effects from the Rocky Road 100 2 weeks earlier and the terrible 50K the day before all I wanted to do was to just get through it. 
The first few miles where pretty slow. It took a while to get loosened up but once I got going things started to get better. Feeling the effects from the day before Julie decided to hang back, which was great, the company is always welcome. So with the two of us running together we decided to make it a 50 mile fun run. Why not, the weather was great, the legs weren’t in any shape for speed and the course was fun but a challenge.  We even got a couple of comments on the amount of laughing that was going on. You’re not supposed to have fun in a 50 mile trail run. Ha, says you.

Cruising along at whatever mile it was I commented to Julie that I was a little disappointed that there were no water crossings. Me and my big mouth. Shortly after I said that up comes a large creek crossing, and then a few more. But it was a welcome change. Temps were in the 70s, which felt hot for us coming from up nort eay. Still having fun, splashing around. Even pulled the old stomping in a puddle when Julie is running next to you trick. Oops, sorry about that, hee, hee.

Alone the way we picked up Carrie, can’t remember where she was from, but she was a riot. Griping about her winy niece and nephew and monthly girl things. At one point I think we had up to 5 people in our little group. We’d pull into aid stations and they would say, here comes the party posse. Eventually Carrie must have had too much fun and picked it up after her grilled cheese sandwich she’d been craving.

Leaving the final aid station we got into; let’s get this thing done mode.  We’ve run so many miles together that nobody has to say anything. We just pick it up and go. Those last miles flew by and before you know it there was the finish line. 11:30 isn’t a real fast time, but it was a fun time. By the time we finished Cassie had already soaked the legs, changed, ate and probably took a nap. She had a great day and ended up taking the lead for the women.

Day 3: Brad's 20k Race Report... 

Cassie was supposed to write this one.  The third and final day and we were all feeling reasonably well.  Cassie was hurting a bit but it’s because she’s so fast. Weather again was perfect and we were ready to get this thing going.

Right from the start everyone takes off.  Stayed with Cassie for about 2 seconds and she was gone, determined to keep her lead. Even I wanted to blast out from the start. Julie was right in front of me and kinda goofing around I was pushing her in the back to get moving. With a laugh she stepped aside and let me pass.  Pushed the pace and feeling pretty good, come on it’s only a 20K. Coming up to the only aid station and supposedly the halfway point l filled my bottle and Julie blew past without even looking at the water. I think she’s part camel. But I had none of that, she wasn’t just going to blow past me like that. Guess she was feeling good because it was tough to catch up. Thinking the finish was soon we kept pushing. That halfway point must have been off a bit because the second part took forever. That quick pace soon slowed down. Where the ffff is the finish.  We were on the right course for sure. Julie would lose me on the hills but I would catch up on the flats until eventually we came out of the woods and into the camping area. That finish was a sweet site and the end of 3 days of racing. Again Cassie was fresh and cleaned up by the time we got done taking the women’s overall win.

Another great road trip was in the books as well as a great race.

Official Results: http://www.syllamo.org/3days/Results.aspx