Sunday, June 14, 2009

Northfield Mountain


I headed out to Northfield on Friday and got the course set up in about 1.5 hours. I was on my own so it took a bit longer, but the bugs weren't too bad and the rain had stopped so it wasn't that bad. I put out about 400 flags and puts some additional arrows out at some of the trickier spots, I also placed mile markers at the traditional locations. It is not a road race but I like the miles to be fairly close to the same spot if for no other reason than to compare from year to year.

Al and Diana caught me with about 1.5 miles to go and they assisted me in flagging the last part of the course and then setting up registration. We headed off for Brattleboro and had a quick swim then the traditional (for me) pre-race dinner of Pizza and Cheesy bread.

Heading into the NF parking lot I was surprised to see so many vehicles 1:30 before race time and a full 30 minutes before registration was slated to begin. The DRC crew had everything in hand and along with Al, Diana, Trisha and Chrissy we had registration going smoothly. So smoothly that I got in a normal warm-up of 3 miles with Tim Mahoney, Eric Morse, and others who joined us at various points along the way. The day was warming up but it wasn't nearly as warm or humid as last year. I felt pretty flat but not terrible.

A quick change into my new Inov-8 shoes and my recently re-colored singlet and I was off for some strides. I gave a few instructions and off we went. I was in the top 10 right away and quickly settled in. I was hoping to keep Jim Pawlicki and Tim M close and also wanted to beat Tim Van Orden to the summit. I figured all of them would bury me on the down so I tried to work hard in the early going. By the mile (5:47) Jim and Tim M were pulling away and TiVO and I were running side-by-side. I could see Justin Fyffe up front with Josh Ferenc and then a line of guys trailing them.

Between 1 and 2 miles Allan Serano began to gap me, I wanted to stay with him as he is a 40+ runner and he beat me by a couple of seconds at Wachusett. TiVO also gapped me by a couple of steps on the tough climb up the "Chute" the steepest section of the course. I closed the gap at 2 miles (12:20) and passed TiVO soon after. I knew I really needed some distance on him before the top and pushed as hard as I could. This course is just a bit too fast for my liking. I hit three miles (19:57) alone and kept my head up looking to reel in Serano and Tim M. On the long straights I could see Jim Pawlicki and Todd Callaghan pulling away.

The out-back section near the summit gives a great opportunity to check out the competition. Serano was a step or two behind Tim and I was 15 seconds back. I tried my best to air it out on the down hill. I hit four miles in 26:59 and was 12 seconds behind Serano. I felt like I was closing the gap, especially on the steeper sections. Mostly I was worried that at any second TiVO would come flying by. I hit 5 miles in 32:29 as I drew even with Serano. I was pinwheeling my arms like mad on the steep downs trying to not run completely out of control. From 5-6 I could hear Serano behind me but now I was focusing on Tim. He never really came back and I think may have run the last 1.5 quite a bit quicker than I did. Six miles was passed in 37:24 and I hit the finish in 10th place running 39:30.

Ferenc won by 39 seconds running the 5th fastest time ever at Northfield. Justin ran a solid 37:05 for second. Eric Morse was top 40+ in 37:35 breaking TiVO's CR from 2008 by 49 seconds. I took 2nd in the 40+ but came up 8 seconds slower than last year. Abby Mahoney ran the third fastest time ever taking the women's title in 43:42.

Complete results at: http://www.coolrunning.com/results/09/ma/Jun13_Northf_set1.shtml

My splits:
2009
547
633
737
702
530
455
206

2008
544
634
737
655
530
458
204

4 comments:

DoubleJ said...

who is Eric Morse?

Trail Pixie said...

400 flags! The course was extremely well-marked! Y'all run a great Northfield Mountain race and event! Thanks for the time you and your team and family put in beforehand to let us have so much fun out there.

David Quintal said...

Nice job, DD. Those splits are scary how they are almost carbon copy from one year to the next.

double-d said...

Fun stuff, would be more fun with jj and dq.

Pixies are always welcome at the DRC events.