Photo courtesy of Andrew King - D4 Productions

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Red Hot 50K - 4:30:01 8th Place

Moab, UT - 8:00 a.m.
crisp 40's, clear, no wind, some snow
mind/body - good/good
Hard effort

The race has come and gone! I'm happy to report that I made it through without incident! I finished in 4:30:01, good enough for 8th place. Last year 4:30 would have got me second place by about 15 minutes but this year it was FAST!
Tony Krupicka 4.03
Kyle Skaggs 4.03
Justin Ricks 4.05
Duncan Callihan 4.13
Johannes Rudolph 4.22
Ian Torrence 4.24
Karl Meltzer 4.26
Suzanna Beck 4.28
Scott Jaime 4.30
Anita Ortiz 4.34

Here's how the race unfolded for me: I got to the start about 7:00 a.m. and decided to take about a 15 minute spin to get the overall vibe - I felt great! But having said that I was still not confident for the entire distance so I decided to play it safe and go out slow. Kyle, Tony, and some other dude (CU all American) took off. Karl started to go with them but decided a low 6 minute pace was not gonna hold up. I talked with Kyle and Tony afterwards and they said they wanted to burn everybody off and cruise in. Cruising they were until mile 29 and this guy by the name of Justin Ricks comes flying past them, they caught up and he confirmed he was a 50K racer. They put the hammer down and came in 4:03, a couple minutes before this "other" guy. It never fails, roadies come out of the wood work and blitz most everybody on the shorter ultras.

Anyways back to my race, I started slow and ran with Jared Campbell and chatted about last years Hard Rock race. Jared was 4th overall and so I wanted to pick his brain a bit. There was one climb and mostly all flat up to aid station 1 - went through 6 myles in 39:47, a very comfortable pace. Most of the next section was a big grind up for about 2 myles then a nice downhill on a semi-technical jeep trail. I ran by myself through aid station 2, which was 13 myles in 1.37:45. From aid station 2 to 3 was mostly sandy flat roads. I was now running with Ryan Burch from Ft. Collins, didn't talk much but I notice he was starting to slow around aid station 3, 17 myles - went through in 2.07:17. I was all alone again starting the climb up to aid station 4, mile 22. Then I got a glimpse of 3 runners not too far ahead. I was feeling really good at this point so I started to push up the hill. I caught two of them and the other one was Ian Torrence, who was just about 300 ft in front of me going into aid station 4 - I didn't get a split. Then it was up and down on slick rock for the next 7 myles. Ian took off! At this point, there were two ladies in front of me and I never saw them until the last aid station - mile 29. I went through aid station 5 in 3.51 and still felt good so I decided to try and NOT get chicked and pushed as hard as I could. I caught one, which was Anita Ortiz and the other one basically was running the same pace I was - I couldn't catch her. My split for the last section was 38:27, which turns out to be a 7:07 split/mile. This woman, Suzanna Beck from Oregon, crushed the record by a half an hour! To top it off she beat Anita Ortiz who is world renown for shorter mountain running. It seems like every time I'm chicked, the woman usually breaks the record. It's happened to me several times now.

All in all I'm extremely happy with my time! I couldn't have asked for a better race! This is exactly what I needed heading into Way Too Cool where I hope to go under 3.50. For the last two years at Way Too Cool I've been 5th place but I don't think that's gonna happen this year. The entrant list for WTC is even more stacked than Red Hot! I will be lucky to crack the top 10 and that's if I get under 3.50. I predict Erik Skaggs will win, Matt Carpenter will be second. They will both get under 3.30, which is world class for this course.
Post a Comment