Kristen is the race director for this 2nd annual race in which also includes a 5K . I volunteers my services just I as I did last year. We drove the course yesterday to confirm mile markers with my Garmin 250 and marked the spots with chalk. Wouldn't you know it would rain last night so we had to go over the course again at 6:30am today. As of last week, my volunteer role was to co-pilot her in the lead vehicle throughout the 11k. As the morning progressed, all volunteers had everything under control. Granite State Timing Services was setting up. Mile markers, water stop equipment, water, cups, and course Marshall's headed out for their duties at 8:10am. Then I worried about having time to run today as I made a commitment to help my friend Patrick move up to Gloucester after the race.
With this in mind, I asked Kristen if she needed me for any other volunteer duties before the race and or if she'd clear me for running the race. I did pack a bag with my running equipment, flats, and CMS uniform just in case. I was cleared to race it so I handed over $20 at the registration table in exchange for bib 67, yellow EBSB race t-shirt, and a chip. At 8:22, I was off for a warm up with Doug Chick who was doing the 5K. We ran the 5K course for the warm up I went over the course with him and explained my role in marking the course twice over the past 14 hours. I gave final instructions to the volunteer at 1.5 mile water stop and where to place the 5K turn around marker.
As I was not mentally and physically prepared to race, I did appreciate the opportunity and wondered what sort of effort the legs felt like putting in. The 11K is a tough course with plenty of hills. I headed out behind Doug Chick, Wes Lassen, and John Ayers. By the time Doug turned around at 1.54 miles and headed back for the 5K finish, I pulled even with John Ayers into the lead, going through my favorite part of the course, uphill, splitting the golf course. We ran together, occasionally chatting it up, through 5.3 miles. Meanwhile, Kristen was in the EBSB lead vehicle as the pace car the whole time. I pulled away from John after going over Rt. 128, leaving Centennial Drive. I hustled to the finish line with a time of 38:55 for the win. My GPS advised that I ran 6.77 miles, 38:54, and 5:44/mile pace. John followed with a solid race in 39:20.
More importantly, Kristen had 100 runners overall with 66 in the 11K and 34 in the 5K which was an increase over last year. The event was smooth and the volunteers did a great job. I ended the event picking up following the race awards packing everything back in the bank. Kristen and I drove the course to pick up all mile markers. I will be at the New England X/C Championships next Sunday, spikes on, ready to race.
Chip versus Gun timing
6 hours ago