Sunday, October 4, 2009

Gold Country 20-Miler

Karalee Morris (first overall in the 20-miler) and I

On Saturday, I had to fly to Denmark for work. However, I also wanted to run the Gold Country 50K (and pick up some grand prix points to stay in first place) that day, but knew I would never be able to finish it in time for my 1 o'clock flight (it is about a 45-minute drive to the airport from Auburn). Skipping the race would be risky though (I just might lose my first place overall).

Robert Mathis (RD) Explains the Course

Fortunately, there was also a 20-mile option. I had run the course before and estimated that it would take me about 3:15 to run 20 miles and that would leave me exactly 15 minutes to get changed and book it to the airport.
Jethro Smith (Second in the Grand Prix) Gets Ready
I started out fast on the four-mile downhill section to No-Hands Bridge, where Lainie was running the aid station. I could still feel some residual fatigue from the Tahoe Triple in my legs, expecially on the flats and the uphills.
Ray Sanchez pulled past me on the first uphill (K2) and soon after that, Aaron Summerhayes passed me as well. Aaron had marked the course, but he was patching up the flagging as he went, because a lot of the flags had been taken down and thrown on the ground.
At one point, Aaron and I came to an intersection that had been vandalized. Somebody had changed the tape around altogether and that had sent Ray the wrong way. Fortunately, Aaron quickly corrected it for me and all the other runners, and Ray could run the loop in reverse without losing time. I really don't understand why someone would do this. Let's just say it was a good thing we did not run into these pranksters (Ray being an ex-golden glove boxer and... let's just say it is hard to outrun any of us). So, vandalize at your own risk!

Aaron Summerhayes Marked the Original Course and Marked it Again While Running!

The rest of the run was pretty uneventful. It was a great day for a morning run, but I kept looking at my watch to see how I was doing for time. I made it back to No Hands bridge with 45 minutes to spare. I was in first place in the 20-miler at that point. I slowed down a bit on the uphill sections and this is where Karalee passed me like I was standing still. She ran a great race and finished in first place overall.
I finished in 3:17 and that's when the real race began. For winning the male race, I received a shoe certificate, I ate about ten pieces of watermelon, and then Vicky and the kids helped hose me off, and I changed in less than 5 minutes. Then we were off to the airport! I made it in time and made it safely to Aarhus Denmark where I will be presenting a training session at the JAOO conference this week. And, guess what? The conference is going to put on a 7.5 kilometer run on Tuesday night. That should be fun.


slowrunner77 said...

way to go Pete...have fun on your trip!!

SnowLeopard said...

Wow- a race after a race! There are not many people in this world who could keep up with your pace~ :) Congrats!

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