Saturday, November 1, 2014

2014 Paris Mountain 16k Trail Race Report

Greenville Track Club (and John Lehman) hosted this event again on November 1st, 2014, but this was my first time running it as a 16k since it changed from a 15k (by adding switchbacks down Sulphur Springs). It was 3 weeks after The Bourbon Chase relay, but I had put in some good miles and I wasn't looking to do too much with this race. The 15k I ran in May 2010 in 1:46, a week Before my 1st 50k at Chattooga,
I showed up early and helped set up the start/finish line and helped with registration until only about 10 minutes before the start. That made me a little rushed as I got to the start line, but did warm me up a bit after being cold in the 34° temps standing still for an hour. There were snow showers overnight  and some wind, but the trail was a bit wet but clear.  
So - we started off, I laid back just a bit as we went down the road, letting others go ahead and got comfortably behind a group on the trail. Not alot of room to pass of course, but I wasn't in any hurry. I was cautious not to push too hard, but still sped up and passed a few. That is, until we got to the steep section of Sulphur Springs. I knew the 'train' would go slowly, they'd run, then have to stop and wait/walk. I planned it well and walked so much of that section, even well before it got really steep. I knew with my walking speed, i would catch them soon enough, so I'd let them get a good bit ahead and sure enough, I'd catch them as they got bunched up. My heart-rate never went up, so at the top, I was good to go. Cruised up Firetower and then pushed a good bit going down to the lake. There was one point where a chunk of ice fell off a tree and almost got me. That would have hurt, but luckily I didn't have any trouble.
I did fade some after the downhill on Sulphur Springs, but picked it up more toward the end of Mountain Creek. I knew my times were decent on each section (except the downhill, which I hadn't run that much), and it helped that I mostly followed someone the whole way. A female was just ahead of me most of the race, just out of reach, but close enough to 'chase'. I ended up beating my 15k time by 10 minutes, in 1:36:09! A very satisfying result!

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