Friday, December 19, 2014

BU Mini meets

It has been nearly 3 years since I last raced on the indoor track.  With the All-Terrain series kicking off in 2015 with an indoor track mile I think it’d be prudent to do a couple of races before the ‘big’ one.  I’ve done the BU mini meets five times over the last 15 years, although I would have thought I’d done more.  It is a great series of three small meets in late December and early January where you can go test yourself on the track.  It is an all-comers meet that on some weekends may have over 100 people doing the 3,000 in various heats.

I’m planning on running the 3,000 and the 400 tomorrow with the goal being simply to run as hard as I can.  It should be “fun”.

My past results at the Mini meets (place is just my place in that particular heat):

01/09/99 3,000 meters, traded the lead with Colin Peddie until final 400.  1 Peddie 836, 2 me 8:36.8

01/09/99 Mile, second race of the day, got buried in the last 100m took 5th place in 4:31.3, First place  Peddie 422

 12/15/07 3,000 meters felt good most of the way almost beat Craig Fram (Junior!) took 10th in 9:34.3,

12/22/07 3,000 meters trail Craig Fram (senior) who was doing a workout.  Took 19th in 9:29.7

12/22/07 Mile, felt pretty beat.  Broke 5 but got “girled” in the last 50 meters.  11th place in 4:59.2     

12/29/07 3,000 meters had a good second half, almost got Pawlicki at the end.  Took 6th place in 9:26.4

12/20/08 3,000 meters took 16th in the 2nd heat in 10:01.1 


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

XC championships


This was the year of XC racing for me with the payoff being a trip to Bethlehem PA for the US team championships. It was especially appealing to me because of the team aspect.  Back in the day the Central Mass Striders won the open championships a number of times.  I’d also raced for CMS on the master’s team a few years back in North Carolina.  This would be my first time on a senior XC team at the championships.  We had the same group (Dave La, Dan V, Martin T, John G, Paul Baz, and me) that had won the New England championships a month ago.  My hope was to finish in the top 25 in the 50-54 and a team finish in the top ten.

Dan and I met up with D-la and Greg P for the 5+ hour drive down to PA.  The drive went by reasonably quickly and we found ourselves at the race site as it opened for course previews.  We headed out and ran a very easy 7 miles (the course plus some extra).  I put on my Inov-8 racers and did some strides to get the cobwebs out.  I was feeling very sluggish from the drive and the lousy head-cold which made my head foggy.  Although I felt miserable I knew from racing many times when sick that as soon as the race started I’d be okay.

We met up with the rest of the CMS crew at the hotel and went to a good local Italian place for dinner.  Much merriment ensued.  Jim P and I drove to the host hotel for the late (late for me!) managers briefing.  There was some important info given out, such as how many runners were allowed on the line and box assignments.  We also found out that we needed to report to the line 30 minutes prior to the race to check in with the clerk.  They’d be ensuring that team singlets matched and that all runners had on a front and back number and the chip laced properly on their shoe.  The singlet rule (all team members top outer layer had to match) is kind of stupid but I get it, since it is a team championship.  I like the age numbers on the back, not that it really impacts how I race but it is good to see what age group is ahead of you.

I debated doing a short run in the morning.  I normally would with a late (11:30am) start but the head-cold had me feeling lousy so I opted to just relax.  There were an inordinate number of skinny folks gathered at the HIE free breakfast.  With a record of nearly 2,000 runners in town for the XC champs there was no shortage of people fueling up.  We drove over to the race site well in advance of the race and counted down the time to a warm-up.

We got out of the nice warm car and did a 2 mile loop for a short warm-up.  I changed into my racing gear and shoes and then zipped over to the line, a few minutes after the 11:00 check in.  There were a few tense moments wondering where Dan was but we finally got checked in and then were released to do whatever we needed to do in the 20 minutes until the start.  I added another 1.5 and some strides and felt pretty good, now I just wanted the damn race to start so the nerves would end.

Nearly 600 runners from age 40 to over 85 took off in a sprint.  The start was wide and really the entire course was wide so there was no panic about not being able to move.  Martin shot out as expected and I found Dan right beside me in the early going.  I could see Jim and Joe a little ahead so it looked like I was where I should be.  There certainly were a lot of people to work with.  I had a very steady race, slowly gaining on guys in front of me and only getting passed by a few (notably a slow starting Mark Reeder of GLRR who ran an excellent race).  After the mile (5:44) I only gave ground to two or three guys and they were guys I passed on an uphill who then went by on the down.  My kick wasn’t what I would have hoped for and the group of four guys I was with 1km to go all beat me to the line.

I was happy with my time (36:36.9) and place (127 out of 588) and especially happy with cracking the top 25.  I finished 22nd in the 50-54.  Our team had a great run taking 8th in a field of 24.  The masters also did well finishing 7th in a field of 34 teams.  Paul Baz had the best individual finish of the day taking 4th in the 60-64.

Splits: 5:44   5:49 (11:33)   6:12 (17:45)   5:44 (23:30)   6:07 (29:37)   6:01 (35:37)   58.9 (36:36.9) 
50+
Pl
Names
Age
Team
Time
Devlin, Jeff
50
Downingtown R Club
33:57.2
48
Barbee, Kenneth
50
Greater Philadelphia TC
34:24.7
53
Magill, Peter
53
Cal Coast Track Club
34:33.3
127
Dunham, Dave
50
Central Mass Striders
36:36.9
148
Verrington, Daniel
52
Central Mass Striders
37:03.2
176
Tighe, Martin
56
Central Mass Striders
37:37.3
250
Gillis, John
50
Central Mass Striders
39:13.7
289
Bazanchuk, Paul
60
Central Mass Striders
40:22.7
409
Lapierre, David
50
Central Mass Striders
44:18.1
40+
34
Putnam, Greg
45
Central Mass Striders
34:05.9
66
Callaghan, Todd
45
Central Mass Striders
34:57.1
74
Bernier, Alan
40
Central Mass Striders
35:11.7
78
Shairs, Joe
46
Central Mass Striders
35:18.9
95
Pawlicki, James
40
Central Mass Striders
35:43.0

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

US XC nationals - Team results (my take)


My unofficial scoring of the Seniors at the US XC national championships:
Place
Points
Team
Cat
1
62
Club NW
50+
2
86
Cal Coast
50+
3
102
Playmakers
50+
4
103
GVH
50+
5
137
Greater Phillie
50+
6
173
Pike creek
50+
7
209
Balt/Wash
50+
8
231
CMS
50+
9
248
Atlanta TC
50+
10
280
GLRR
50+
11
282
Chatt
50+
12
352
Downing
50+
13
370
Syracuse
50+
14
407
Shore
50+
15
430
So Jersey
50+
16
436
F and M
50+
17
469
North Jersey
50+
18
543
Ann Arbor
50+
19
554
Phillie masters
50+
20
574
B4run
50+
21
601
Moorestown
50+
22
618
Eastern Buck
50+
23
633
Fleet Essex
50+
24
767
Pineland
50+

Monday, December 15, 2014

Week Ending 12-14-14

I got the miles I wanted this week but also got an unwanted cold.  Snorking all week long, which made me feel pretty miserable leading up to the USATF XC championships.  The trip out to PA was “fun” and all of the guys raced well.  So, all in all it was a good week.

Totals

Week – 93

Month – 186

Year – 3,877

Life – 126,898

 

M – Lunch 7 in 53:10

       PM Winni 6 in 45:48

 

T – Lunch 7 in 52:40

      PM Dan’s woods 7 in the pouring rain 52:55

 

W – Lunch 7 in 50:21

       PM Dan’s flooded woods 7 in 51:12

 

Th – Lunch 7 in 49:22

        PM Bird Sanctuary 7 in heavy snow in 57:16

 

F – 6am icy Industrial park 6 in 46:30

     PM 7 miles in Lehigh PA 59:35

 

Sat – 2+ warm-up, another 1.5 with strides, 10k race, 3.3 warm-down

 

Sun – 7 with Petey and D-la in 66:39

         1.5 to the highest point in Litchfield

         1.5 to the highest point in Londonderry

          2 miles to the highest point in Chester

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Mill City Relay

This weekend I ran in my 10th Mill City Relay.  Over the years I’ve run with a few different teams (all of which I was and or still am a member of).  This year as last I was racing for the Gate City Striders, but for the first time I’d be on a senior (age 50+) team.  We had a very solid team with all of the guys projecting to run under 6:30 pace.  We lost Ernie Brake to a fractured toe, but picked up Jeff Hunt as a last minute replacement.  I met up with Dan Verrington at the end of our leg where we dropped his vehicle and headed to Nashua to hand out team numbers.  Dan was racing for a masters (age 40+) team for the Winner’s Circle, so the car drop was very convenient for both of us. 

I eventually found my teammates at the race start along with a vast number of people I knew from various clubs.  It is so great to see so many people turn out for this annual event.  We got to the start of our leg with a lot of time to spare.  I spent a few minutes catching up with CMS teammate Todd Callaghan (who was also doing the long leg) and even chatted quickly with Pat Moulton.  Wow, there were some really fast guys doing the long leg, which wasn’t a surprise since this is a race that a lot of clubs take seriously.

Dan and I hit the road for a 2.5 mile warm-up.  It was chilly and there was a pretty strong cross-wind as we headed north on the course and caught sight of some of the early starters finishing the short leg.  I felt tired and a little nauseous with a headache that had been bugging me for nearly a week.  It looked like this was going to be a long day.  I quickly switched into race gear and headed back out to stay loose and try to stay warm.  I ran up and down the bike path toward the Rourke Bridge and back a bunch of times.  Each time someone came into sight I looked for a GCS singlet.   I mentioned to Dan that this was the toughest part, not knowing if your hand-off would be in 30 seconds or 10 minutes.

No sooner had I said that and a GCS shirt came into view.  His number was flipped over so I yelled “What is your number?”  He replied that it was “49” which was my team’s number. Oh boy!  I was 200 meters from the exchange so I got rolling and ran with him to the exchange zone saying “not yet, not yet”.  I didn’t want to grab the baton early and chance a disqualification.  I slapped the baton on my wrist and off I went.

Almost immediately I heard footsteps and was caught by Aharon Wright from the Somerville Road Runners (SRR).  He was moving pretty fast but this might be my only chance to run with anyone.  A little way in he asked me if I did the “wolf sock race’.  I wasn’t sure what he was talking about so my first response was “huh?”.  As we caught another SRR guy he repeated his query.  I didn’t know what to say, until the other guy chimed in “no one calls it that, it is the Jack London Race”.  I chuckled; the Jack London race gives out socks that have a (lone) Wolf logo on it.  So, now that I got it I replied “yep” and he told me he finished in 3rd place this year.   We hit the mile in 5:52 which was way under my 6:10 projected pace.  I felt pretty good and hoped to just roll with it.

Wright kept checking his watch (like every 15 seconds) and was throwing in a lot of surges, so I’d fall back and then catch up.  The wind wasn’t bad so I didn’t think I needed to stay right on him.  We got onto the bike path along the River around 2 miles into the leg and I was getting warm so I took off my gloves.  D’oh!  I dropped the baton!!!  That meant a quick stop, turn, and recover.  That put me about 10 seconds behind Wright with a long way to go.  I kept thinking “Wait ‘til 5 miles” and kept moving along with miles between 5:56 and 5:46.  At 5 I made a conscious effort to up the tempo and ran a 5:45 mile.  That cut the gap and I was now about 5 seconds back, but I just couldn’t quite close the gap.  Just after 7 miles I was passed by Chris Grange (Winner’s Circle) who was moving at a good clip.  I tried to latch onto him to drag me the final couple of seconds up to Wright but it was just a bit too fast for me.  He blew by both of us, but I had the gap down to a few steps and by 8 miles I was back on Wright.  I tried a few times to go around him but no luck.  The wind seemed to have picked up and I was starting to struggle (the last 3 miles were my slowest three of the day).  I couldn’t muster a kick and with ½ mile to go I lost ground again but reached the hand-off well ahead of schedule with a 55:40 (5:52 pace).

I could not have been happier!  My 10k split was almost as fast as I’d run at Lone Gull and the 15k split was nearly 2 minutes faster than I’d run at the NE champs.  I stopped over by the SRR group and congratulated Aharon on his run and thanked him for helping pull me to a good time.  After adding on some clothes and heading out to keep warm, Dan came in from his leg.  We finished off the day with an easy 3+ warm-down.  Later I’d find out how well our team did, we ended up taking 16th overall and 2nd in the 50+.  Whirlaway nuked us by over 5 minutes, but even being that close to WRT is an accomplishment.  Heck, only three masters teams beat us!  GCS ended up taking the overall Mill City Relay title, along with the award for the most teams entered.

Results:
1
DESIREES DYNASTY
AARC
MO
2:20:39
0:05:14
2
WHIRLAWAY BRATS
WRT
MO
2:27:08
0:05:28
3
THE WORM HAS TURNED
GCS
MO
2:27:41
0:05:29
4
SRR - THERE'S NO WAY ALEX SHOWS UP
SRR
MO
2:27:53
0:05:30
5
WHIRLAWAY PURGATORY
WRT
MX
2:30:50
0:05:36
6
SRR - MALE SUB-MASTERS
SRR
MX
2:31:04
0:05:37
7
SRR - TO MORROW NEVER DIES
SRR
MM
2:33:02
0:05:41
8
THIS IS NACHO BRICK
GCS
CO
2:34:16
0:05:44
9
CHRIST JOE, JUST COOK THE PATTIES!
GCS
MX
2:35:04
0:05:46
10
WCRC FAST AND FURIOUS
WCRC
MO
2:35:44
0:05:47
11
SRR - ANTUNES^3
SRR
CX
2:36:12
0:05:48
12
SUPER SENIORS
WRT
MS
2:36:27
0:05:49
13
100% ABV
GLRR
MO
2:37:34
0:05:51
14
WICKED REDEMPTION
WRC
MM
2:37:46
0:05:52
15
BRICK CHASERS
GDTC
MM
2:38:12
0:05:53
16
A STRING OF EXPLETIVES
GCS
MS
2:41:17
0:06:00
17
WCRC NSYNC
WCRC
MX
2:41:23
0:06:00
18
WHIRLAWAY COED OPEN
WRT
CO
2:42:32
0:06:03
19
GRATEFULLY NOT DEAD
GCS
MM
2:43:19
0:06:04
20
VIA CON DIOS
AARC
MX
2:43:24
0:06:04


My Splits:
Mile
Rolling
5:52
5:56
11:48
5:46
17:34
5k =
18:08
5:46
23:20
5:54
29:14
5:45
34:59
10k =
0:36:12
5:56
40:55
(18:04)
5:53
46:48
5:55
52:43
15k =
0:54:29
55:40
(18:17)


My history at the MCR

Date
Leg #
Start Loc
Dist
Time
Pace
Teams
12/06/87
4
Lowell
9.60
48:05
5:01
30
12/04/88
2
Tyngsboro
6.60
33:30
5:05
73
12/02/90
4
Lowell
9.60
48:23
5:02
77
12/06/92
5
Tyngsboro
4.60
22:09
4:49
50
12/04/94
3
Lowell
2.30
11:29
5:00
120
12/08/02
4
Lowell
9.30
54:10
5:49
122
12/05/04
4
Lowell
9.40
54:35
5:48
119
12/03/06
4
Lowell
9.40
55:19
5:53
142
12/08/13
2
Nashua
4.75
28:58
6:06
199
12/7/2014
4
Lowell
9.50
55:40
5:52
210