Monday, September 11, 2006

McKenzie River 50k

Did McKenzie River 50k last Saturday. I have never ran this race before but had ran on the lower 2/3rds many times in the past. This was the first trail that I had ever ran on as my brother invited me to run along three years ago.

This course is one of the most scenic in Oregon. It is a fast 50k also. The mens field was stacked. Ticer was fit and recovered from injury. Lewis Taylor was just having the best year. Others, Tom Adkins, Scott Jurek, Rob Coll and others were all between 2:30 and 2:50 marathoners. The womens field was strong, just not quite as deep.

My goal for the day was to start out slow and finish strong. Hit as little aid stations as possible. Be somewhat self sufficient. Mark Humphrey's and I took off just behind the leaders. We knew that we were in unchartered territory when we could still see them after a half mile or so. We backed off a bit.

Ran up around the lake for the first third. This I hadn't seen yet. Somewhat technical but still fast. Passed through the first aid station without stopping. Still had plenty of fluids in the handhelds. Continued to run with effort onto the 2nd aidstation. Ran through it knowing that I could fill up at the third one. Passed several in the second aid station along with Mark. Mark would catch up to me in a mile or two. He was cruising. I just maintained pace.

Fill up at the third aid station. Didn't have to fight the crowds. I was the only one there. I see Bob Coll catch up. I ask him if he wants to pass. He said he was fine. How is this possible? He is a 2:30 marathoner. We run together the last eight miles. I lead as I can't stand the way he runs the downs. Sorry, he was just running to cautiously slowing down. We run everything. I think I only walk about 10 steps in this whole race! Talk about a lot of "running".

Bob starts to faid on the short hills. Really, they are not bad. I finally don't hear him after the last hill. I catch up to Christain Beck walking the last hill. Another speedy dude, but having an off day. He has ran sub 4:30 here a few times. He starts to pick the pace up the last three miles. I follow suit but can't gain on the 50 foot gap he built.

Finally, I get passed the last mile by Scott Cheers. He is new to the ultra sceen. He will do well next year.

I finish in 17th out of 100+ in 4:44. 30 minutes faster than my predicted time. Kyly had me at 5:09 comparing me to others my speed. I was pretty darn surprised. I hadn't looked at my watch all day. Not even to see when to eat next. Ignorence is bliss I figure.

I ended up winning the Oregon Trail Series Masters winner. Another surprise.

John Ticer wins for the third year in a row. Missed his course record by a bit but he was still happy. Tia Gabalita celebrated her 38th birthday with a win in 4:36.

"Big" Steve Loitz celebrated his 50th birthday and 10 McKenzie.

A great day on the trail. Scenic as all get out. Ran with Kyly and Bob Lynes up Lokum Ridge at Mt. Hood the next day for a 9 1/2 hour adventure. More on that later. Now it is time to take it easy. Rio Del Lago 100 in two weeks.


Sarah said...

Nice! It certainly was a beautiful trail and a beautiful day. Hopefully I'll be back next year.

And congrats on your Oregon Trail Series masters win!

olga said...

Congrats on a win, Master!
You are running so fast and strong...I was actually telling Gail on Saturday how I wish I had your commitment to push trhough this year, and how admirable it is. I'll see you in 10 days.

stephruns said...

running a 50k, not even looking at the watch and winning the oregon trail series??? you are an "iron" man!!!!!!! Congrats!