An Ri Ra Race Review
I end up being forced to deal with getting my mom registered for this one, along with my own registration. Yes, nothing gets me riled up like people who expect me not only to pay for things that they do, but also to make sure that they get done, but I didn't do enough of a job to get out of this one. So, I get there nice and early, pick up packet (shirts aren't as cool as last year's, weaker design and fabric) and ask when the buses to the starting line leave. I'm told 8:30, so I don't take the time to take personal break and get otherwise prepared. We roll out at 9:00. No big deal.
The straight line from Emma Park to the starting line is less than a mile away. Unlike last year, we start a bit further back on the road, and get to hit the trail, rather than deal with a strange loop out. I like this aspect of the course, although it is a bit strange to start with an uphill. The course starts above Butte, goes past three or four headers along asphalt trail looping toward MT Tech, and actually jaunts around town and through downtown at the end. I talk with a guy about the Memphis Marathon (sounds cool, but it sells out way too early, since it's a wintertime marathon and registration was full when I checked) and settle myself near the back of the pack.
I had absolutely no idea how to situate myself for this race. I usually do well on downhill, but still had all the tired legs and sore feet from having done the 50k a week before. On the other hand, I always like getting races done with. I end up going hard on the initial downhill, and passing a bunch of people along the way. It ends up being tricky, just because the course is narrow and there is enough weave to make racing lines matter. I'm still feeling awesome when we hit Tech's campus, which is where the downhill really starts to level out.
I'm suffering the great problem of most races on tired legs, which is that I've got no power on the uphill sections. So, I'm really struggling to get uphill. On the other hand, I'm inspired by running alongside a cool guy with a double baby jogger. He's got bigger uphill / downhill swings than I do. We hit a huge uphill in downtown Butte, and I manage to crest it while still being alive. After that, the race course gets a bit tricky to follow (lots of turns at the last part, and traffic to deal with), and I end up getting passed by someone who looks young enough to be in my age group. I end up getting passed by a fresh legged Kenny Romaine, which does bother me. Punk youth and their fresh legs.
So, at the award ceremony, I get announced as finishing second overall, in the women's division. Yeah, something strange happened there. I check the final, final results, and see I managed to take second in my division, which probably won't be happening again for a long time, since I'm moving in the guys who know what they are doing, but still have to work age group. And, despite the great overall descent, it isn't enough to make this a fast course, just the easiest possible course in hilly Butte.
Garmin Stats: 6.11 mi, 46:05, ascent 404, descent 954 August 11, 2012