I’m finally getting around to posting on this race. I do have a good excuse! My family has been out of town and I’ve been running, skiing and cycling the past week and every night I’m too tired to think about writing anything.
Once again, Sean Meissner and all the volunteers put on a stellar race. Sean keeps tweaking this course as the Sister’s Trail Committee adds new singletrack in and around Peterson Ridge…it’s just getting better. Now, if I could get about 5 more major climbs in this course it’d actually suit me better. 🙂 Seriously, this is a runner’s course. Everything, I mean everything, is runnable with no major technical trail. It’s beautiful and definitely a great race, and I like it for the simple fact that it’s mentally a tough course for me with no crazy mountains to climb.
Race day we had great weather. Brisk at the start, but hazy day with some sun breaks. Within a mile of the start Inov8 runner, Yassine Diboun took the lead (and never let up) and ran a great time of 4:17. I settled into 2nd and was about 3 minutes back through aid station 5 (a little over halfway). However, after aid 3 I missed the road turn off singletrack for aid 4 (so did Yassine)…about a 2 minute shortcut. Some flags had been pulled and right after we went through, they fixed the flags. I didn’t know Yassine had missed it too, and I didn’t know until I was nearly to aid 5, as there is so much new course I didn’t know exactly where I was and I knew that aid 4 moved from last year. Well, I was thinking I was going to have to drop or at least finish and tell Sean and get DQ’d. Luckily, due to the course vandalism, Sean just docked Yassine and I two minutes, since it was a small mishap and didn’t change the mileage much or our places. However, this mess up really took the wind out of my sails on chasing Yassine.
Since I new I was off course and after I checked into aid 5 and found out Yassine was in fact still in front of me, well, I thought he was on course and I was the only one off. Oh well. To his credit, I doubt I would have caught him, he ran a great race. While I was ho-humming between aid 5 and 6 on what to tell Sean and generally in a stupid head space over the mishap, Yassine was driving it home (he didn’t know he was off course) and put another 8 minutes on me by aid 6. Once that happened, I was done. I couldn’t see 3rd place. So, I just kept plugging away and finished in 4:39 in 2nd place. Yassine said he thought I was 3 minutes back the whole time and kept pushing. Dang…just goes to show, don’t let down, you never know. Always a good lesson.
Just gotta roll with it. Beautiful day out there with a little clouds, little sun. It’s always a great race and also a joy to hang out with all the Central Oregon runners with their race faces on. And, man oh man…great finish line burritos and the usual cool finish on the Sister’s Middle School track. I did jump the hurdle on the track backstretch this year after 36.5 miles. No injuries. Giddyup!