Sunday, June 6, 2010

Pack Monadnock 10 Miler

Sunday was race # 3 in the USATF-NE Mountain Running Series for 2010 and it took me up to Wilton, NH to run in the Pack Monadnock 10 Miler (results).

This race was unfortunately the same day
as the USATF-NE 5k Road Grand Prix Championship down in RI, but I had already decided at the beginning of the year, that I'd run the mountain series no matter what.  Couple that with the fact that this race is a decent tune-up for Mount Washington in 2 weeks, and it was pretty much a no-miss.

The weather was pretty crappy once I arrived at the Wilton-Lyndeborough High School parking lot.  The sky was really dark and it was sprinkling a bit at first, then it started to come down pretty good.  After I registered, I ran into Mountain Series leader Eric Blake (BAA) who was going for yet another win, and Kevin Tilton who had shown up with Paul Kirsch.  I was now looking at no better than 3rd and was wondering who else would be challenging for a podium spot.

I went out for a warmup with Ken Tripp (yes, that is right, Ken this is not a typo, he was actually racing) and we ran up the first mile + of the course (which of course is ALL UPHILL) and turned back to be joined by Eric Blake, who is getting ready for another potential Mt. Washington win in 2 weeks. Once back at my car, the rain was coming down pretty hard and I was soaked.  I threw the singlet on and we jogged down the quarter mile or so down to the start.  Just before the start, while doing strides, the rain was coming down really hard.  As I lined up, I noticed a slew of GBTC guys who were all there to prepare for Mt. Washington in 2 weeks, as well as Keiron Tumbleton, who was not too far behind me at Northfield.  I knew it was going to be a tough ride for a top 3 spot now.  I had my Inov-8 230s on and was ready to roll.  I figured they'd be the ideal shoe for the wet pavement and muddy dirt road sections of the course.

As the gun went off, it was clear that Eric Blake was on a mission.  He took off like he was shot out of a cannon.  Kevin went with him and I stayed put in 3rd position, right ahead of Ed Breen (GBTC) (who had run a 5 mile race the day before) and Andrew Wommack (GBTC).  By the first mile, I was a little ahead of the pack but already out of range from Kevin and Eric.  I kept chugging up, up, up with the occasional downhill, but just when you think you have a nice easy section of the course, you start climbing up a sick uphill again.  I am amazed at how hilly this area is in general.

As the miles passed, I continued to keep a close eye on who was trailing, but had a decent pad on 4th place.  I lost sight of Kevin and Eric probably around halfway or so, maybe even around 6 miles. Up until then, Andrew Wommack was the next guy back.  I could tell by his white jersey when I took occasional quick peeks.  It seemed like I was putting some distance on him on the uphills, but he appeared to be gaining just a bit on the downs and flatter sections.  At around 6 miles or so I noticed that Keiron Tumbleton was now in 4th and I couldn't really tell if he was getting closer or not.  I could no longer see the first two runners, but I was just trying at this point, to make it to the State Park and beginning of the auto road with enough of a lead on Keiron to be able to limp up the last 1.5 miles, which is one of, if not the toughest 1.5 stretches of 'road race' I've ever seen.  The stretch of the course up Route 101 is brutal.  It's a steady climb out in the open, and you can see up and down the highway pretty far.  I couldn't even see Eric and Kevin at this point (last year I could see everyone, including the leader, during this part).  Keiron was within' view, but pretty far back.  I thought around that time, that I may be able to hold him off.   I pulled into the State Park with what I thought was enough of a lead, and I don't think I lost anything on the final climb.  I ran about 6 seconds faster this year on this last push up the auto road.

My last mile was 9:22, which is a borderline walk, but 6 seconds faster than last year.  Eric Morse is the only person to ever break 8:00 on this last mile, and he did so with a 7:58 back in 1999 when he set the course record.  I believe DD once ran an 8:01 or 8:02 on this, back in the day.  Eric Blake ran 8:15 on this last mile straight uphill.  As I was crawling up this last twisting, turning, and lung/quad burning section of the course, I started to think that I may be in trouble in 2 weeks at Mt. Washington.  I just felt really horrible here...not mustering any sort of drive forward.  I was barely moving in spots and kept looking back the entire time.  I was just expecting (as I was last year) to get blown by here, but alas it didn't happen.  I hit the last 200 meters, which is the steepest, most ridiculous part of the course.  It is steeper than any section of Mt. Washington with maybe the exception of 'the wall'.  I was looking at my watch here for the first time, thinking that I could maybe run just a tad faster than last year, and maybe break 64 minutes.  I pushed up the last section and crossed the line at the top, in 1:03:53, 31 seconds faster than last year, and a solid 3rd place finish.

Kevin ran a fantastic race and should be set for Mt. Washington in a couple weeks.  Eric took the lead for good at around 6 miles, but Kevin hung tough, running to the 11th fastest time ever.  Eric ran the 7th fastest time ever, and became only the 3rd man to run under 60 minutes (joining Morse x2 and Dunham x4).

Photo around 8.5 mile mark (entry in to the park and right before the start of the auto road and massive amounts of pain). Photo courtesy of Steve Wolfe.

Top 10 + CMS in blue

1Eric Blake        31New Britain CT       59:556:00
2Kevin Tilton      28North Conway NH     1:01:076:07
3Jim Johnson       33Salem NH     1:03:536:24
4Keiron Tumbleton  44Hopkinton MA     1:05:256:33
5Andrew Wommack    26Jamaica Plain MA     1:06:116:38
6Chad Carr         34Cambridge MA     1:06:286:39
7Ryan Aschbrenner  32Waltham MA     1:06:426:41
8Todd Callaghan    40Somerville MA 1:07:456:47
9Tomoaki Uchiki    36Jamaica Plain MA     1:08:186:50
10Bruce Davie       46Cambridge MA     1:08:296:51
13Tim Mahoney30Holyoke MA1:09:316:58
16Dave Dunham46Bradford MA1:11:357:10

359 Total Finishers.

Splits are a little interesting.  I actually ran slower this year than last year, over three miles.  4,5, and 6.  For some reason, I was way slower over mile 5 and only 5 seconds ahead of last year's time through halfway.  That is pretty consistent, but I was looking to be a lot faster.  I definitely picked it up over the last half and ran 26 seconds faster this year than last, over the last 5 miles.  Take a peek at mile 10!  Talk about a TOUGH mile!!!!!

2009 Splits2010 SplitsDifferential for MileDifferential Overall
Mile 1) 6:11Mile 1) 5:59- 12 seconds- 12 seconds
Mile 2) 5:44 (11:55)Mile 2) 5:40 (11:40)- 4 seconds- 16 seconds
Mile 3) 5:27 (17:22)Mile 3) 5:22 (17:02)- 5 seconds- 21 seconds
Mile 4) 5:59 (23:22)Mile 4) 6:04 (23:06)+ 5 seconds- 16 seconds
Mile 5) 5:32 (28:55)Mile 5) 5:43 (28:50)+ 11 seconds- 5 seconds
Mile 6) 6:14 (35:09)Mile 6) 6:11 (35:01)- 3 seconds- 8 seconds
Mile 7) 5:44 (40:54)Mile 7) 5:45 (40:46)+ 1 second- 7 seconds
Mile 8) 6:38 (47:33)Mile 8) 6:35 (47:22)- 3 seconds- 10 seconds
Mile 9) 7:22 (54:55)Mile 9) 7:07 (54:30)- 15 seconds- 25 seconds
Mile 10) 9:28 (1:04:24)Mile 10) 9:22 (1:03:53)- 6 seconds- 31 seconds

With my 1:03:53, I am now the owner of the 31st and 37th fastest time here, out of only 44 sub 1:05 performances since 1992.

All times under 1:05 (CMS in Blue, 2010 times in Bold)

Time rankTimePlaceNameAgeTeamYear
10:58:351EricMorse34CMS1999 Pack
20:58:492DaveDunham35CMS1999 Pack
30:59:071EricMorse36CMS2001 Pack
40:59:131DaveDunham32CMS1996 Pack
50:59:311DaveDunham28CMS1992 Pack
60:59:402DaveDunham37CMS2001 Pack
70:59:551EricBlake31BAA2010 Pack
81:00:121EricMorse32CMS1997 Pack
91:00:533CraigFram42WRT2001 Pack
101:00:581CraigFram43WRT2002 Pack
111:01:072KevinTilton28CMS2010 Pack
121:01:131BobHodge371993 pack
131:01:251EricMorse35CMS2000 Pack
141:01:282MikeCasner33CMS1996 Pack
151:01:312EricMorse37CMS2002 Pack
161:01:401DaveDunham34CMS1998 Pack
171:01:501DaveBeauleyGCS1994 Pack
181:01:592MikeCasner29CMS1992 Pack
191:02:012DaveDunham36CMS2000 Pack
201:02:103RichardBolt28CMS1999 Pack
211:02:133FergusCullen28HTC2000 Pack
221:02:182RichardBolt27CMS1998 Pack
231:02;371BrendanCallahan27BAA2009 Pack
241:02:393MikeCasner35CMS1998 Pack
251:03:014JamesGarcia39CMS1998 Pack
261:03:042JuanGuillermo382009 Pack
271:03:172MikeCasner34CMS1997 Pack
281:03:283JustinFyffe29CMS2009 Pack
291:03:333EdwardSheldon32GCS1997 Pack
301:03:432MikeCasner31CMS1994 Pack
311:03:533JimJohnson33CMS2010 Pack
321:03:533DavidHannon231994 Pack
331:03:544EdwardSheldon34GCS1999 Pack
341:03:551PaulLow32CMS2006 Pack
351:03:564DavidHannon261997 Pack
361:04:065FergusCullen26HTC1998 Pack
371:04:244JimJohnson32CMS2009 Pack
381:04:333PaulLow28CMS2002 Pack
391:04:355FergusCullen25HTC1997 Pack
401:04:424MikeCasner39CMS2002 Pack
411:04:421PaulLow33CMS2007 Pack
421:04:515DaveDunham38CMS2002 Pack
431:04:536BrianStevens33GCS1997 Pack
441:04:586StephenPeterson32CMS1998 Pack

Next up is the Market Square Day 10k (maybe my favorite race of all time) on Saturday.  Look for it to be LOADED with talent.  Top 10 here will be difficult to hit this year I'm thinking....


  1. Way to go Double J!

    I probably couldn't walk up that course!

    Good luck on Mt. W!

    Michael C
    in NYC

  2. Good job two J's. Thanks for the longest comment ever to appear on Casey's Corner.

  3. Great description of the last mile. It sounds NASTY. I might have to try it sometime. The CMS "road" team will be glad to have you back for Stowe. Nice race.