I actually did not expect much coming in, because I had not run more than 10 miles since the Silver State 50-Miler two weeks ago. That's mainly because... I switched jobs! Yes, after more than eight years at Oracle, I joined Kaazing, a Mountain View-based startup specializing in technology that enables real-time web applications. I am really excited about this new job, but needless to say it's been a bit hectic just getting started and set up with everything.
I was not 100% sure if I would run this race, but then on Friday, I received my Wasatch Speedgoat Mountain Racing Team team shirts and other gear (Thanks Scott!), so I felt inspired to put on my new shirt and "represent."
Before the race, Chris and I took a quick two-mile warmup run down the hill with Ryan from the Fleet Feet Racing Team in Sacramento. After that, we lined up at the start.
I decided to run the first mile a little slower this year and clocked it at six minutes (vs. 5:38 last year). I wanted to have enough gas left in the tank for the tough hills at the end of this race. I finished the first 2.75 miles in third place and I was feeling good.
The next mile was basically all downhill, so it was time to turn it up. I bombed down the hill at an even faster pace than last year (speeds up to 16 mph per the Garmin) and blasted past Chris and Brandon who were already on their way back up the hill. At the turnaround, I noticed that Robert Warner was not far behind me. In fact, he would have me looking over my shoulder for the rest of the race.
The steep hill was broken up by a nice one-mile stretch of trail parallel to an irrigation and the last part of the course went back up the hill and then flattened out for the last quarter mile on the road to the finish.
I came in third overall (still first among non-Reno residents) in 44:01 (yes, next year I'll have to break 44 minutes!) -- 18 seconds faster than last year and, given the circumstances, I was very happy with that. Robert Warner came in about 30 seconds behind me and Austin Violette and Ryan from Sacramento also finished not too far behind. Sean and Rocky had a birthday party to attend, so I was by myself.
Chris Badolato had won the race in an incredible 37 minutes and change, followed closely by Brandon (also in the 37-minute range). It looked like Chris and Brandon had already showered and eaten lunch by the time I rolled in ;-). Chris's young daughter was very happy to accept his ribbons and the winning trophy. In fact, it was a great day for the Badolatos, because Chris's wife took third in her age group in the 5K. Reno's Joe Parker won the 5K. Way to go!
Next Up: The Auburn 50K