Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Fruita: Desert RATS 25 miler

What a great weekend in Fruita! I had had a difficult week this last week just feeling slow, lethargic, and drained. But the weekend did come and Duncan http://duncancallahanrunning.blogspot.com/ and I drove off Friday afternoon for Fruita. I had been planning on running the 50 mile race in Fruita but decided on Friday to back it off and run the 25 miler. Sometimes you just have to listen to your body. Duncan and I picked up our packets and headed off for an early bedtime at our hotel. We were big time’in it as Duncan, Adam St Pierre, and I had decided to get a luxury… a motel. I slept well and rolled out of bed around 4:40am.

We arrived at the start about 5:50 just in time to get a decent parking place. It was cold out, so after checking in I waited in the car to stay warm for the 6:30 start. Finally it was race time! I went up to the line and chatted with a few runners. I was still debating about what to whether or not to wear my long sleeve when Ryan Burch http://ryanwburch.blogspot.com/ showed up convinced me to drop it… I’m glad I did. Ryan was dong a 25 mile training run and ran the course in the opposite direction.

Shortly after I heard a countdown: 10,9,8… and then we were off. There was a $100 premium at 1.3 miles in. I was just planning on a fast run to get to it but Daniel Goding was off racing. This in turn meant that I had to really haul. I got to it in about 7:15… I guess it was a 5:20 first mile. I slowed up let Daniel have the lead and tried to recover after such a hard effort. My throat felt scratchy and my lungs felt off after breathing in the cool early air. Dylan Bowman http://dylanjbowman.blogspot.com/ was right behind me but he was content to take it easy for the first few miles. I sipped water to pacify my sore throat. Another runner came and passed us but he and Dan were only 30 yards ahead of us so I just sat tight.

After the first aid station at mile 6 (our time was about 42 minutes) I was finally feeling ready to start rolling again. There was a short hill where Dylan and I caught up to the two leaders and passed them. This was about 7 miles in. From here Dylan and shared the lead at a solid clip. The pace promised that race was now between us yet was relaxing enough not to proverbially kill us. Just before the 12.5 mile aid station was a short climb where I took the lead with a little surge. A minute later I ran through the aid station as Dylan stopped for fuel. I was feeling strong and just started rolling down the miles. The single track terrain made this maddeningly fun. I was crazy and knew it and loved it. The views of the remote meandering ribbon strip Colorado with adjacent cliff and broad precipices all the time side by side to the single track were majestic.

I had built up a 40 second lead i guessed and kept rolling. I hit the mile 19 aid station at 2:20ish. After this is an 800 foot climb up Mack Ridge. I felt a slow and tired going up the ridge, but on top I felt like I was able to start rolling again. The finish finally showed up… I ran 3:09:10. Dylan ran a great time of 3:11:50. Full results are here: http://geminiadventures.com/new/?page_id=125

Duncan ran great in the 50… he won it.
A solid weekend for Gunnison…now to get more base under me… and a 50.