Sunday, October 4, 2009

Topsfield XC Festival


Sunday I ran over in the Topsfield Cross Country Festival (results) at Bradley Palmer State Forest in Topsfield, MA.  This 8k race is an annual USATF-New England XC Grand Prix event put on by the Greater Boston Track Club.  We had a rather light CMS team representing, but it was enough to get 3rd place overall, even without some of our top guns (actually all the other clubs were also missing top guys, so it was all relative).  It really is a fun team event and a true cross country course, which made it even more worthwhile for me to run this year. I'm glad I got another cross country race in (3rd this year and 2nd in the last 2 weekends).  It was also 54th race of the 2009, but only the second time in 8 tries against Kevin Tilton (CMS/Inov-8) this year, that I've been able to hold him off.  He's had my number all year when it counts though (4 x Grand Prix races, the U.S. National Mountain Championships, and the U.S. national snowshoe qualifier).  Oh well, I'll take it whenever I can get it.

The race started out a little quicker than I was anticipating and I immediately felt a little sluggish out of the gate.  By a quarter mile in, it was no surprise that last year's winner Jarrod Shoemaker (BAA and 2008 Olympic Triathlon Team Member) was way out front, followed closely behind by last week's Codfish Bowl winner Ryan Place (GBTC).  After those two, it was a small back of 2 GBTC guys, BAA's Matt Carter, SISU's Mike Griffin, Pete Mallett, and then me.


By about a mile in, I had pulled up along side and then past Matt Haringa who offered some words of encouragement.  I then started working on trying to catch Pete.  By the second loop around and up Moon Hill, I was right behind him and waiting for my chance to go around and start to go after the rest of the chase pack. Kevin seemed to be gaining and after that, it looked like a pretty good gap.  As I made my way out into the field again, and across Moon Hill, I went around Pete and tried to convince him to come along.  The last mile or so has got some decent dowhill to it and along this descent, I was slowly gaining on Griffin and Carter.  By the time the race opened up back down near the field by the start/finish, I started running out of real estate and knew with about 300-400 meters left that I wasn't going to catch the 3 guys directly in front of me.  I took a peak back and saw that I had a decent amount of room on Pete now and knew I had at least 6th in the bag.  Then, with 200 to go and the finish line in sight, my left hamstring snapped.  It was horrendous.  I haven't ever had this happen this bad in a race before.  I'm not sure what did it (seeing the course wasn't in bad shape, the hills weren't that bad, and it was only 8k), but it was bad enough that I thought I wouldn't be able to finish the last stretch.  I came through in 6th place and 26:32 on a rather tough course, so I'll gladly take it...considering I almost thought I wasn't going to finish.  I eased into the warmup and it was bad.  I was thinking of bagging it, but after a couple of miles it loosened up ever so slightly and felt maybe 10% better, but it's still as bad as it has ever been.  I may have to play it by ear tomorrow and take a day off if it is still sore.  I'm icing as I write this and will take an Epsom soak in a bit.


Overall, our team did pretty well considering we only had 7 guys (2 of them brand new to the team) total.  A couple of our quicker Open guys couldn't make it so we had to rely on one of our speedier masters runners (Dan Verrington) to pick up the slack with the open scoring.

The weather was picture perfect on the day and the course was in great shape (considering all the rain we had yesterday).  Kristin and Kristen took a bunch of great photos on the day.  They positioned themselves up on the hill for a good group of shots at the 2 mile and 4 mile marks.

Kristin Wainwright's Photos at Smugmug - 280 photos
Kristen Kozlosky's Photos at Smugmug - 142 photos

Top 10 Overall + CMS in blue

Place
Name
Club
Time
Score
1
Jarrod Shoemaker
BAA
25:48
1
2
Ryan Place 
GBTC
25:53
2
3
Dan Smith  
GBTC
26:17
3
4
Matt Carter 
BAA
26:17
4
5
Mike Griffin  
SISU
26:26
5
6
Jim Johnson
CMS
26:32
6
7
Peter Mallet

26:47

8
Kevin Gallagher
BAA
26:57
7
9
Kevin Tilton 
CMS
26:57
8
10
Matt Haringa
GBTC
27:18
9
16
Dan Navaroli
CMS
27:45
14
20
Jim Pawlicki
CMS
28:35
17
21
Dan Verrington
CMS
28:49
18
22
Dave Harper
CMS
29:01
19
25
Dave Dunham
CMS
29:17
22
27
Dave Quintal
CMS
29:31

54 Total Finishers.


Team Scoring:

[1] Greater Boston Track Club (GBTC)
 - 2, 3, 9, 11, 13, (16), (21) = 38
[2] Boston Athletic Association (BAA)
 - 1, 4, 7, 15, 28, (30), (34) = 55
[3] Central Mass Striders (CMS)
 - 6, 8, 14, 17, 18, (19), (22) = 63
[4] SISU
 - 5, 10, 12, 25, 26 = 78
[5] Greater Lowell Road Runners (GLRR)
 - 20, 24 ,29, 31, 35 = 139
[6] New England Track and Trail (NETT)
 - 23, 27, 32, 33, 36 = 151






Photo by Kristin W.  L-R: Dan Navaroli, Jim Pawlicki, Kevin Tilton, me.

3 comments:

Dave H said...

Jim thanks for the use of the singlet. Love being on such a great team. Two great Photographers, WOW now thats a serious team!

DoubleJ said...

Dave, you got it! Nice work today...solid run. Dan V. was worried about you before the race :) He told me you were gonna give him a run for his money for sure...thanks for coming out and running for us...good times. Is someone working on getting you a uniform? Let me know. I think dd is still the masters team guy and he may have one for you..I'll circle back with him on it. Hope to see you again soon!

Kevin said...

Nice job yesteday Jim. Way to grind it out. That race was almost like a snowshoe race the way you had to constantly change pace.