Monday, January 31, 2011

Sidehiller Snowshoe

Kristen and I headed up to Center Sandwich, NH for the Sidehiller 4 mile snowshoe race. The race is part of the race series: Western Mass Athletic Club / Dion Snowshoe and the Granite State Snowshoe Series. In addition, it was a qualifying race for the USSSA Nationals race to be held in Wisconsin later this winter. My intentions were to connect with Bob Dion from Dion Snowshoes to upgrade to a new pair snowshoes (racing model 121), replacing the pair that I had since 2004. They are a touch lighter and have a few other small upgrades including a reinforced cleat and quick binding system. The race also gave me a chance to break them in.

This race is always competitive and knew I would have my work cut out for me. This course reverted back to the layout from two years ago. It contained a quick loop around the fairgrounds and across the street through wide open fields that is mostly single track. The snow was a light sugary consistency underneath a light top crust which made the track slow for my 157 lb frame. I felt like a slug through most of the course and did not have to fight too much with anything but the snow under foot. I owned 11th place after 600m and throughout the race. I had a single file pack of guys about 10 – 30 seconds throughout for me to stare down but never close on. It took me 35:41 to track what might be a shade more than four miles. I am curious if anyone wore a GPS through this one.

The team did very well. Kevin Tilton took the win with Jim Johnson right behind him. Dave Dunham ran a very smart race making his way up into sixth place and Scott McGrath who I heard joined the CMS ranks was right in front of me. Kristen was all over the place taking photos. Meanwhile, NH Chronicle was on site taping footage and interviewing several folks like Kevin and Jim. I look forward to the segment in the future. I ran a cool down with Dave Dunham a few minutes after the race. Kristen and I soon hit the road for lunch at about twenty minutes away at Walter’s Basin on Little Squam Lake in Holderness. I had an awesome Tuna Melt and Fries. I wish I had the chance to spend more time and even a night or two in the area. It is a shame to “hit and run” the north country.

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