The Long Downhill on Broad Street
The last part of the course is my favorite: a huge downhill on Broad Street (the main street in Nevada City's downtown area), followed by a slight uphill before the final straightaway to the finish. Greg was still pretty close, so this was my chance to increase the gap. I started hammering down the hill and passed Zach just before the final climb. Realizing I now had a chance to put some extra points in the grand prix bank, I sprinted to the finish and arrived in third place overall (1st in the 30-39 AG) in about 20:45.
Hayes finished the race in 28 minutes and change and Rocky came in around 32 minutes. Larry Defeyeter won the age group in the 10K (41 + change) and Frank Plucker and Sid Heaton ran some excellent 10K races as well. I met many fellow Sierra Trailblazers, including Catherine, the Sierra Trail Runner (who ran a great race herself -- check out the great pictures on her blog) and it was fun catching up with all of them. We had a fun time watching the other racers finish. The most dramatic finish of the day was Troy Vahidi's. His super-charged finish sprint reminded me of the recent women's finish at the Chicago marathon, as he blasted by an unsuspecting race finisher in the final 50 yards.
And, hey, I was not the only ultrarunner participating in the short distance today! Gordy Ansleigh, the man who basically invented ultrarunning, ran the 10K and won the 60-69 age group.
With Gordy at the Awards Ceremony
After most of the 10K runners had finished, race director Richard Thomas handed out the great awards that this race is known for: the Sierra Club Calendars for the top 2 in each age group. Last year my dad, who came in second in the 70-79 age group, had won one and and fortunately I was able to pick up another one of these great calendars this year. The amazing Boutte family from Nevada City had a great day with four age group wins and (I think) two overall wins as well, so look for them selling calendars in the mall :)
Redefining "Large Coffee"
Many thanks to Richard Thomas and his wife for organizing this great race, and to the small army of volunteers who monitored every intersection of the course and made sure this race went so smoothly.
Next up, The Helen Klein 50 on November 3rd!