This was my 17th time racing up (or mostly up) Wachusett Mountain. This year CMS change the course again, this time to a great 10k with a steady 5k of climb and a mostly run-able 5k of downhill. My hope was to run this as hard as I could and see how if the Thursday night race took anything out of my legs.
KT and I met up with Tim M and Baz and did our warm-up by running out/back over the last 1.5 of the course. It is always a good idea to see how the race will finish so you can judge how much you can give in a final press. I changed into racing gear and did another mile with strides. At the last minute I decided to wear gloves (it was 40 degrees and raining), it was a good decision...my hands were never warm during the race.
The field was solid, with 300 starters and a fair number of fast guys. I found myself in the 20-25th place range in the first half-mile. I wasn't sore from the 5k on Thursday and didn't feel out of "normal" for a race, but it did seem like everyone went out in a big pack. I started to feel a good groove and by the mile (7:10) I was in 15th place. 400' of climbing done and 800 to go!
Once we turned into the park people seemed to really motor on the short downhill. I help place and then started moving up on the guys in front of me. By 2 miles (13:02/5:52), I caught a small pack that included Craig Fram and Ross Krause. Both haven't raced much this year but are obviously back to being very fit. Craig and I moved slightly ahead of Ross. We hit the summit in 21:04 (8:02) then started the crazy downhill.
I passed a guy soon after we started down, which got me into the top 10, but soon after Brian Keefe (Somerville Road Runners) flew by. I tried to keep rolling and hit 4 in 26:42 (5:38). About a half-mile later Ross came flying by and for the rest of the way we fought back and forth with neither of us gaining more than a couple of steps. We cranked out 5:24 pace to the finish but couldn't reel in Keefe. Ross went by me for the final time with 400 to go and I just couldn't get back around him.
I was very happy with the effort and the results. The course was a blast! Really not my type of race, the climb just isn't steep enough for me and I can't run downhill to save my life :-)
Next up: Bretton woods fell race, USATF NE mountain series race #3
1 35:50 Eric MacKnight 302 1/25 M20-29 Ballston Lake, NY Whirlaway
2 36:09 Brandon Newbold 190 1/29 M30-39 Nottingham, NH WRT
3 36:12 Jacob Barnett 72 2/25 M20-29 Medford SRR
4 36:58 Jim Johnson 270 2/29 M30-39 Madison, NH BAA
5 37:28 Trudy Delhagen 225 3/25 M20-29 Brooklyn, NY HKAC
6 37:40 Tristan Williams 213 4/25 M20-29 Jackson, NH
7 37:53 Todd Callaghan 199 1/55 M40-49 Beverly CGCS
8 38:06 Kevin Tilton 239 3/29 M30-39 N Conway, NH CMS
9 38:29 Brian Keefe 112 5/25 M20-29 Medford SRR
10 38:36 Ross Krause 309 4/29 M30-39 East Thompson, MA CMS
11 38:37 Dave Dunham 75 2/55 M40-49 Bradford CMS
12 38:56 Andy Scott 82 6/25 M20-29 Merrimac Lesley U
13 39:17 Allan Serrano 175 3/55 M40-49 High Falls, NY SR
14 39:19 Tim Mahoney 179 5/29 M30-39 Holyoke CMS 15 39:21 Craig Fram 131 1/53 M50-59 Derry, NH Whirlaway
16 39:24 Tim Van Orden 308 4/55 M40-49 Bennington, VT CMS
17 39:34 Brandon Kowloon 251 1/28 M60-69 Nayaug, CT HKAC
18 39:57 Robert Cipriano 232 2/53 M50-59 Belmont SRR
19 41:14 Steve Dowsett 285 7/25 M20-29 Newburyport Whirlaway
20 41:51 Bradford Klinedinst 81 6/29 M30-39 Hudson NBB
21 42:20 Brian Ruhm 278 5/55 M40-49 Nashua, NH GCS
22 42:31 Ryan Welts 296 7/29 M30-39 Northwood, NH PI/AR
23 42:46 Abby Mahoney 277 1/20 F30-39 Holyoke WMDP
24 42:52 Kristina Folcik 297 2/20 F30-39 Northwood, NH LS/D
25 43:08 Christin Doneski 99 1/25 F40-49 Hopkinton, NH Whirlaway