And on to race number 2…
After hanging around a bit to take some finish line pics and getting some sweet mascot photos with the Cardinal Newman cardinal, I was off to Dutch Fork.
Like Run with the Saints, the Dutch Fork Be a Fan 5k is also directed by a Columbia Running Club member, Kimberly Taylor. This year’s race not only went to benefit the special needs students at Dutch Fork, but also in memory of Timothy Gibson, a SC DOT worker who tragically lost his life in the October flood. So, plenty of good reasons to support this race.
Of course, I had shown absolutely zero restraint at Run with the Saints, and I was pretty much toast by the time I headed out to Irmo. Between the warming weather and the fact I didn’t sleep well the night before, (i.e. 4:30 wake up) I was more interested in curling up in a ball and putting in some hardcore nappy time. But hey, let’s run another all-out 5k instead.
I was cursing myself for signing up as a 2 man team with the Code, “Code Blue”, because now if I jogged this thing I was going to let him down. And sure enough, the 30+ minute drive across town was plenty enough to make my trashed legs all tight and gimpy. This was not going to be pretty – though judging from my race pics, it never is.
Kimberly and Frances O’ Toole, who will be taking the race directorship next year, told me the day before that they had about 200 signed up. That’s a pretty good turnout for a 2nd year race with competition from another one the same morning. Always glad to see our people supporting our Tour de Columbia races.
Surprisingly, quite a few other psychos were double dipping this morning too. John Gasque, Tour director and the godfather of the double dip, was already ready to go by the time I got there. He makes sure no traffic jam or any other unforeseen circumstance will get in the way of his precious TDC points. A man after my own heart. Adam Feigh, who just ran low 16 and barely got beat by Jonathan Kinsey for 2nd at RWTS, was also on board. Check out his blog at https://feighathlon.wordpress.com/about. Rashad Striggles finished one spot behind Adam and was here along with RWTS women’s winner Shawanna White. Ted Hewitt hadn’t run a race in months but decided to knock out two in one morning. Bravo, Ted. 1966 SEC mile champ Rocky Soderberg may be 73 but still double dips with the best of them. At least I know who I’ll be like in 2049.
Joyce Welch, with son Tate, Angel Manuel, Wayne Shuler, Bri Hartley, Marie Demetriades (Kimberly’s daughter) , Sara Bonner, Colleen “Don’t call me Mrs. Pale Beast” Vowles, Tracy Meyers, Lisa Smarr, Joe Green, Pete Poore, the O’Toole family, the Golbus twins and Jessalyn Smith were some of the familiar faces and names in this one.
Last year’s course was completely on the Dutch Fork High and Middle campus, making for a lot of parking lot twists and turns. Kimberly helped eliminate two of the main loops by doing an out and back on Old Tamah Road, which was nice, particularly because the road is pretty flat.
My goal: just finish this thing, and hopefully not too shamefully. Hopefully in the ball park of 20 minutes.
The start was a mad dash down a hill and then a big parking lot loop to thin out the herd some. OMG – the legs, even after a warm up, were just total cinder blocks. After the first half mile I started to assess my position. It was hard to figure out pace since everything felt like death. I was basically in my usual racing-with-the-high-school-girls mode. No, I’m not a perv (well, mostly not)– all the varsity HS girls run about 19-20 minutes for a 5k, so there you are. About three of them could draft in my oceanliner of a wake , so I’m sure they are glad to have the Sasquatch around. Anyway, one of the Golbuses and Bri were nearby, so I figured I must be 6:20ish pace. Code was up ahead with Angel. Just needed to keep them in sight. Legs were still hating life on the out-and-back on Old Tamah, but it sure was nice to eliminate some of the parking lot loops. Everything was cool until mile 1 came back at like high 6:40’s. Damn these slacker teens! I was hurting but my ego couldn’t take running over 21 and giving Trophy a chance to return his own “Blackjack” nickname to me.
I pushed the pace some as we plunged downhill into the middle school campus. Speaking of slackers, what the hell was up with the Code?? Normally I’d be relishing the fact he was getting reeled in, but he’s ON MY TEAM. He’s only a few steps ahead when we hit the first of two killer uphill loops. The first one starts me gasping but the second one is long, painful and just pummels my quivering quads into submission. Rounding the turnaround at the top and I am just hating life. Mile 2 goes off at some point but I don’t even want to know. On the way back down the hill I am flopping all about and still catching up with the Code. Finally I pull alongside him and I can tell he’s in full crybaby mode, talking about his cold or something. I’m not sure what I said to him in my delirium, but he finally grew a pair and started surging ahead. One more loop and I think its home free down to the stadium. Nope, another fun incline right before the concession stands has me begging for mercy. Finally we hit the track – Code, myself and a couple high schoolers mired in the shame of getting beat by a couple of goofy, pale 40 year olds. I’m gunning it as hard as I can go, but the shredded legs and blown out lungs are fighting back against this brutal punishment. Finally I make the last turn and sprint to the line, a step behind Code but in front of the last kid of our minipack. The results look like we ran it together on purpose. I swear there was no handholding and smiles. 20:23, 13th overall, 3rd in AG. But most importantly, FIRST in the two person team category. Sweet – a surprise trophy hunt!
Taking the win and a 19 Tour de Columbia point, double dip day was Adam Feigh in 16:39. Striggles was just 10 seconds behind, with a faster time than RWTS on a harder course. Go figure. Third was 14 year old Jaden Kingsley in 17:49. In the women’s race, Shawanna White notched her 2nd win of the morning and another 75 bucks with an 18:48. Not bad for a morning’s work. The Golbus twins finished 2nd (Alexa) and 3rd (Ashley).
Age groupers: Travis Nichols placed 4th overall and 1st in the 25-29. Wayne Shuler and Ted Hewitt took 2nd and 3rd in the 45-49. John Gasque was 3rd in the 55-59. Pete Poore won the 60-64, and Rocky was the champ of the 70-74. Bri Hartley won the 14-16. Sara Bonner took the 30-34 with Jessalyn Smith 3rd. Colleen Vowles won the 40-44 after a long injury hiatus. Shelley Hinosn won the 45-49, while Joyce took 3rd despite pacing son Tate. Tate ran an impressive 26:05 in a super competitive under 10 division led by Storm track team kids. Tracy Meyers won the 50-54 females, while Lisa Smarr did the same in the 55-59.