Thursday, September 27, 2012

2012 - 25th Annual Pisgah 50k Recap

Sunday September 16, 2012

For the long time readers of this silly blog.  I'm going to start sparing writting blog posts about the course year after year.  If you want a more complete recap of the course filled with photos please refer to (2005, 2008, 2009, 2010 , and 2011)

Instead my goal is to try to capture/document the highlights of the year.  We'll see how it goes...

It was great seeing Izzo and Delbac from the VT Ultra crowd at the starting line.  Steve and Loni both getting their second place metals that they didn't pick up at the Moosalamoo Ultra a month prior.  John gave the Team Robert clan (Rik, Steve, Loni, Grant and I) crap at the starting line.  "So this is how you guys do it huh?  You start at the back of the pack and it's all up from here isn't it?"   Apparently our tricks of the trade are becoming well known.

Grant and I take our time in the first section running with Rik, Steve and Loni before the split.  At the split we turn on the gas and dart ahead.  The bridges are the dryest they've been in years and we time our steps so the bridge bounces what feels like at least a foot up and down between strides.  We laugh about how funny it would have been for it to just break in half spilling into the water.  Some shocked runners ahead of us turned around and said, "sure, funny if it was just you guys on it."  To which I said, "well sure, we're all human. Imagine how funny It'd have been if it was on youtube?!"

Occationally Grant will check his watch and comment about our pace.  I feel like we're cooking along at a decent clip, but it's still to early to really tell, all i knew is that we'd been passing people left and right and no one had caught back up.  After passing a woman that says, "make sure you save me some rice pudding!"
we catch two runners from Connecticut named Al and Tim.  Al is a veteran of the distance and had/has/still? coaches a guy and gal that have both won the 50k and set the course record respectively.  Tim is the ultra virgin who laughed when i called him, "the sacrafice."   Grant and I fill them in about the course ahead while Al tells us about his upcoming Rim2Rim2Rim run in the Grand Canyon in November.   The miles melt away.  Grant hitting lowes while I hit highs and vice versa.

At mile 17 we catch up to another ultra runner i've spent some miles with named Eric and we chat briefly before the climb up Pisgah Mountain itself.  Tim comments, "ah, so we're finally seeing some ultra tricks."  To me as I pick up a walking stick for the upcoming climb.  He's kind enough to snap a photo of us at the summit.  We lose them on the decent and dont see them again. 

Pisgah Photo

Grant and I catch Delbac and two other runnres at the Kilburn Loop 1 aid station and like everyone else.  We quickly grab food and take off and never see them again.  Only one woman catches us on the loop. And that is very brief before we pass her back and leave her in the dust.  

Grant - "dude! pick your damn feet up!"
Me - "I think i kicked that root so hard i can now fit into a smaller shoe size."
~Later in the same stretch of trail~
Grant  - "Jeez, are you TRYING to kick everything"
Me - "I don't know, but i think i just broke my back and threw out my shoulder"   (Refering to me trying to catch myself while falling)
The last section of trail is always the hardest.  I again go to my staple of finding a hiking stick.  Grant follows suit and we power hike past another 4-5 racers that had been ahead of us all day.  When we hit the last downhill Spanish Train comes to mind.   Like a dork i sing a verse of it and explain how this song comes to mind every ultra at the end as a sign of the devil letting go of your soul.  Best half-animated youtube clip here. We hit the gate, skip the water and race down the hill side by side.  I ask grant to check his watch, "(are) we gonna break 7 hours??!"   "We've got 14 minutes."

Similar to Moosalamoo we set goals (in this case telephone poles) down the road to run and/or walk to to save our legs so we can finish strong.  Occationally checking over our shoulders to see if anyone was trying ot reel us in.  Not a chance. I swear we did the final mile sub 9 minutes, or perhaps it just feels that way after 30 miles and the better part of 7 hours in the woods.  Either way, we crossed the finish line in 6:54.  Laughed, ate burges and dogs, and chatted with our ultra breatherin for the next hour or so until Loni rolled in.

Another ultra in the books, the VermonT 50 on the horizon. My 13th consectutive start. Both Loni and Grant, still looking to break the 50Mile mark in their ultra careers.  Wish them luck!!

1 comment:

leeapeea said...

What a fantastic day you guys had! Sorry I couldn't share any miles with you this year. Glad you both had a sub 7hr finish!