It was sunny and windy and two below zero when I got to Brooksby. Not too bad for a snowshoe race.
I tracked down the race director to ensure I knew where the course went and headed out for a preview (wearing kahtoolahs). The snow was not very firm in the orchard but the trails in the woods were well packed. The course was nice, it had a mix up singletrack and orchard, ups/downs, and for the most part was marked fine. I got to a bit after 2 miles and lost the course in the middle of the orchard. The wind had covered up any tracks and also covered up the red spray paint the RD had used to mark the course. I made a best guess, but lost the course. I headed in and informed the RD that there were no course markings. After getting my intel she said she'd head out and re-mark that part. I went to the car and changed into race gear and put on my snowshoes.
I went out and met up with Jim and we ran a bit in the orchard. I let him know what I'd seen on the warm-up then hit the line for the start. 38 lined up for the race and after some quick words of encouragement we were off.
|From the Lynn Times|
Jim came back a bit on the initial climb then got to the point where I'd gone off course earlier in the day and called out "I'm not sure" and I yelled back "Neither do I". Jim made a best guess and 100 meters later saw the marking (we were on course). He may have slowed a bit due to the uncertainty and the loose snow, which got me back up behind him. I got within a step and held that step until the last 100 meters or so when he kicked and I didn't have another gear.
Jim took the win in 21:21 with me four seconds back. The course was about 1/4 short from years past and some noted that the orchard loop was shorter than other years.
1 James Pawlicki 47 1/4 M4049 41 M Lynn MA 21:21 6:54
2 Dave Dunham 72 1/5 M5059 51 M Bradford MA 21:25 6:55
3 Jeffrey Hixon 21 2/4 M4049 41 M 24:05 7:46
4 Brett Rickenbach 76 3/4 M4049 40 M Danvers MA 25:15 8:09
5 Michael Zackin 69 2/5 M5059 57 M 25:26 8:13
6 Matt Lynch 81 1/8 M3039 37 M 26:31 8:34
7 Randy Ward 77 2/8 M3039 33 M Newmarket NH 26:42 8:37
8 Peter Malinowski 73 2/4 M6099 61 M Beverly MA 27:37 8:55
9 Bob Dion 70 3/4 M6099 60 M Readsboro VT 28:41 9:15
10 Brian Mason 34 3/8 M3039 35 M 28:57 9:21
Jim, Brett (4th place) and I went out for a short warm-down. I went inside and got some hot apple crisp and a bagel before hitting the road.