I didn't plan on racing twice this weekend but ended up with two anyway. In the last 12 days I've raced four times for a total of just over 35 miles.
10-24 Great Bay 5km
I decided to do this race mid-week when double-j mentioned that the race was almost closed. I had been a spectator at this one a few years ago and thought it would be fun to see where my legs were after the marathon. Race day was cold and rainy, similar to last weekend. It wasn't too bad once we got running. JJ and I did a 3m warm-up then changed into the CMS black outfits for the race.
The start was held up a few minutes because "people are still parking", that is really frustrating when you warm-up for a start and then have to stand around getting cold. Don't get me going about this, or about a race with 1,000 entrants and limited bathroom facilities. Anyway.....
I asked Kara Haas what her plans were and she was aiming for 17:30 which sounded good to me. At the start JJ went out hard and was leading by 100m in. I settled into the top 20 and very quickly moved up to the top 10. By 1/2 mile I was in a pack of 7-8 guys with the front of the pack being third place. Kara and I both moved to the front of the group as it slowed down a bit. I could see double-j leading the race and heading for the $$$$ bonus for the first mile. Scott McGrath was right behind him and I was sitting in third place with Kara right beside me.
We hit the mile in 5:34 (the clock showed 5:28 but was wrong). I felt pretty good, but also pretty close to as fast as my legs would turnover. Adam McCready and I exchange the lead a bunch of times over then next mile. He threw surges, I'd react then cut a tangent (many) and get right back in. We hit 2 miles in 11:09 (5:35) and then hit the only hill in the course. I tried to keep it together and was a bit surprised as Chris Ritchie and Peter McNeil caught up (they were "slightly" off the back of the pack) and then moved ahead. I checked my watch a couple of times hoping that I'd have a little juice left, but Ritchie really moved with 400m to go and I couldn't react. I had a strong finish to hold off McNeil hitting 3m in 16:45 (5:36) and 31 for the last .11 for a 4th place in 17:16.
I ended up missing the $$$, but did get a gift cert to a Nursery for winning the 40+. JJ had a solid run but couldn't beat McGrath, he did close out the Seacoast Series with a 2nd place overall. We got in a nice slow warm-down that included a trip up and over Stratham hill (viewing platform) but it was socked in with rain/fog.
11th Annual Great Bay 5K
24 OCTOBER 2009
1 Scott McGrath M21-29 15:25 4:58
2 Jim Johnson M30-39 15:38 5:02
3 Chris Ritchie M21-29 3/326 17:10 5:32
4 Dave Dunham M40-49 17:16 5:34
5 Peter McNeil M21-29 17:18 5:34
6 Lance Powers M30-39 17:22 5:36
7 Matthew Stilling M15-217:28 5:38
8 Kara Haas F30-39 17:29 5:38
9 Adam McCready M21-29 17:32 5:39
10 Yolanda Flamino F30-39 17:41 5:42
Cider Hill Farm trail race
Sunday dawned bright and clear and since the hike for this weekend was cancelled I decided to head up to Amesbury and run with Petey. I had it in the back of my mind (well maybe the front) that I'd do the race. We signed up, then met up with 2008 winner Ken Tripp and headed out to check out the course. It looked like a lot of fun. Sharp turns, mud, big uphills, screaming downhills, really a little of everything.
We did about 3 miles then changed into racing gear. I went with the Inov-8's and Petey used his old (1995) Fell running shoes, Ken went with some heavier shoes with not the greatest traction. We knew there was going to be some decent racing as both of the Craig Fram's were spotted before the race.
After much (too much) thanks, course descriptions, more thanks, course notes, etc.... we finally headed off. Ken went to the front and the Craig's went out hard as did some others. I tried to work the first hill and found myself in 9th by the top. Then on the flats and every little downhill I moved up. I never saw the mile mark, I was too busy watching my footing. At about 1.25 we headed down a big hill toward the mud and the lead pack of five all came back. I ended up at the front by the bottom and ran side-by-side with Ken for a little section. Once the last downhill was done, Craig really started to motor. I fell back into 4th, bumping elbows with Ken. Craig really hammered the uphill passing the 2m mark well in front. I pulled ahead of Ken as the third place runner pulled away from me. The final half-mile was mostly just a lot of looking back to make sure I wan't caught as I just couldn't reel in the guy in second. The course was a bit short, I don't think with all that climb/drop I could run 18:06. I'm pretty sore now from running the downhills pretty hard.
1 CRAIG FRAM M5059 Plaistow NH 17:42 5:42
2 KELLY JEFF M4049 Byfield MA 17:57 5:47
3 DAVE DUNHAM M4049 Ward Hill MA 18:06 5:50
4 KEN TRIPP M3039 Amesbury MA 18:23 5:56
5 CRAIG FRAM JR M1518 Plaistow NH 18:33 5:59
6 BILL SOLIMINE West Newbury MA 18:35 5:59
7 STEVE PETERSON M4049 South Chelmsford MA 19:00 6:07