Friday, October 12, 2012

Estrella Mountain 20k Race Report

This race report is not going to be incredibly long because this race was rather uneventful. Leading up to the race I was nervous due to the fact that I have not ran particularly fast in quite some time. I threw in a couple "quick" days in the week leading up to the race but that is about it. This is the 1st race in the XTERRA series in Arizona. This is the second race that I have ran put on by XTERRA and I was not disappointing in the least. The course was a bland in the fact that it simply wound around the competitive tracks in Estrella Mountain Park but I understand the reasons for that. The course was very rocky and my feet have the bruises to prove it. Here is how my morning played out.
Banking a Hard Right

The gun went off and we banked a hard right and were instantly on single track. This caused a lot of runners to run next to the trail in order to get into a desirable position. I settled into about 8th place behind a lanky fellow who I coat-tailed up until mile 11. I chose to carry a water bottle and travel shirtless to cut down wind resistence and negate the need for aid stations. This turned out to be a rather successful strategy as the morning warmed up to mid-70s and I appreciated the lack of cloth against my skin. Naturally. The only real event in the race was that the leader strayed off course and at about mile 8 I glanced over my shoulder to see him. As he caught up to me I thought breifly about leaving my current rabbit and chasing him but my loyalty to the lanky rabbit caused me to stay put. I was able to hang in about 5th place up until the last mile or so where I was actually caught and dropped back to 6th where I would remain. This race demonstrated my need to run a bit more on flats and gradual hills rather than the abrupt hills I've been training on. When it came to anything flat or "easy" my legs felt dead and lazy. All in all it was a solid race and a lot of fun. I went way faster than I thought I was capable so that was a confidence boost.

The only other photo can be accessed here search for bib 29 or my last name (Carlson)

Next race is going to be my first attempt at an ultra on October 20th, Cave Creek Thriller.

Jog on Mates!

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