Monday, September 24, 2007

Press Release: BAA Masters Team Wins Winnipesaukee Relay

Straight from the BAA website:

In other racing action over the weekend, on Saturday, September 22nd, the Men's Masters team won the 2007 Fred Brown Relay Around Lake Winnipesaukee (NH) outright, finishing more than 24 minutes ahead of second place. The team completed the 65.1 mile event in a time of 6:44:20 (6:13 pace). Team members included: Bernie O'Reilly, Kyle Bowers, Andy MacDonald, Andrew Gordon, Bob Collins, Chris Smith, Bob Gerrity, and Pat Stumbras. For complete results, Visit the Event Website.

What a day! I have never done an event with guys from the BAA and we had an absolute blast! The report is short; Bernie was 5th, handed to me and I moved us to 4th and then Andy smashed the field and put us 1 minute ahead with more strong runners coming up. The problem with the other teams is they front loaded their runners and with me running 2nd leg, I would say that we did the opposite, but the truth is ... this powerhouse team just had so much depth that we continued to move ahead on every leg after mine. I believe it was 4 minutes after Andrew and was just building with these guys because they are so fast. I figured it out during the 6th leg that Chris was running and called my wife to tell her that we were going to win this thing all out. I had heard Bob had a fantastic leg and we would have the opportunity to join with the 6 finished runners to cheer on the last two - Bob and Pat; who both were smooth and strong on intense hills. We knew we had it in the bag and stopped every mile or so to cheer them on. All of the legs were extremely hard, not just mine. I did have one mile up hill to start my leg (6:45 pace) and then have steep pounding downhills, which unfortunately has made my foot sore, but I'll get over it. I ran 100% hard and I can still feel all those hills in my legs. I haven't run that hilly of an 11 mile course ever and did no hills in preparation, so trust me - I was glad to hand that baton to Andy!

The only down thing of the day is that when we finished, no one was around!! Not even one other team car. We even waited for 15 minutes and could see nobody for a mile down the road! We would have had to wait four hours for the award ceremony. I had already driven home and had at least three beers by then!

Well done guys! The pleasure was mine!


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Off To The Winni Relay

I'll be racing up at Winnipesaukee this weekend with the BAA masters guys. I'll be doing the second leg - 11 miles and hilly, should be fun. This team has been organized by my team mate and is pretty stacked. I would say I'm one of the least fastest guys on the team, but certainly not the slowest. This event has helped me refocus on my running and I'm starting to get back into form. My expectation is we will win the masters men category and probably be in the top three overall. I would really like to see us win this thing overall, but I guess it depends on the competition. Last weekend was the small 5K in Lancaster. Could not keep up with the 20 year-old, but I left it all on the course. I ran 18:13 (5:52's) to finish second, which is one of my faster, certainly my fastest 5K in 2007. This picture is from the Hale off-road tri, probably my last tri of the year :-( , but I'm getting back into the swing here for fall and want to do a fair amount of racing. I still have not decided on a marathon, but I will see how things go and maybe run the inaugural Manchester marathon on Nov. 4. It at least gives me time to prepare and have some fun doing some fall races. See you on the road (or trail), -Kyle

Monday, September 10, 2007

Hale Triathlon Race Report

Once again, looking for a little action last weekend, I went looking for a race. I've been riding my mountain bike quite a lot lately, so I figured I'd give an off-road triathlon a go. Also, most of the other races had been closed for several weeks. This is small tri that benefits kids going to camp at the reservation, which is huge. I have done the TT course, which goes around this resevation and Caryl park, I don't know how many times during IMLP training, so it was interesting to see the area. Anyway, the race; off to a fast start on the swim, but trying to not make the same mistake at Gardner, where my head was spinning, off balance, trying to put on my bike shoes. I was relaxed and concentrated on my stroke; long and quick. I was second all the way from the first buoy and swimming down the leader at the last turn. The last couple of swims was no-wetsuit and I felt like I was going very fast with it on. Right out onto the bike - I think first, because at the bike mount nonbody new what I was talking about when I said "how far behind?". I was confident this might finally be a tri win, but on with the bike. I had ridden out about a mile on the course and it was dirt roads. I figured this would be a lot like the duathlon last year. The race director anounced that they had been "practicing" the course since July and I was confused why that was necessary or it must be for first timers. I knew I had to let the bike fly. As I got out about 1.25 mile, I was flying down around a corner and oh boy, a mine field of large rocks. I was definitely out of control. The trail got worse, small-single track with wet roots and rocks. Pedaling fast and mountain bike hadling skills are two different things. It was a bummer to be leading the race and then give it up big-time, but I was definitely over my head here and it was the difference in the race. I had a real good run where I picked-up a number of guys, but followed someone the wrong way (again), which only cost me about 30 seconds. Got passed from the Colorado Springs transplant (Chris), but managed to stay pretty close to him and passed one more guy at the end. Run was good enough for second fastest (Chris was first), even with the screw-up. Anyway, good race and lots of fun. I have definitely got a long way to go if I want to be a mountain biker. I could also use one of those $4000 bikes that whipped by me - if anyone was unsure about what the want to buy me for Xmas this year. Results:

6th Overall, 1st AG
Overall Time: 0:51:56
Swim: 06:41 (2nd)
T1: 00:46
Bike: 0:29:01 (12th)
T2: 00:39
Run: 0:14:49 (2nd)

I'll post a picture from the race next week - they claim they will post them online. Back to run focalized training. Unfortunately, this may be my last tri of the year :-( I have got to prepare for the Winni Relay which is on 9/22. I'll be running with a stacked BAA masters team. These guys are good runners and there is pressure for me to sharpen my running, as I will be doing an 11 mile leg that features some tough hills. I will concentrate on this for the next two weeks and then evaluate what I'll to do next.



Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Wapack Trail Race Report

What a day in the mountains! Absolutely clear as a bell. You could see as far south as Boston and as far north as the white mountains. I decided to do this race last minute, having not put in a run longer than 11 miles in the month of August, I knew this would be a challenge. Since there was no trip anywhere this Labor day weekend, I really needed to get out of the house. It has been 3 years, since I had run the Wapack. It is back to being a well run race, with lots of talented, young guys blazing the trail. I am really glad did it. I needed it.
I think there was around 50 runners? A pack of about ten took off real fast. I went in the back. For those that have not done this race and don't know the course; this is an 18 mile extremely challenging trail that is an out and back, over four mountains twice with some long, steep climbs. The pack was eventually gone when we got to the steep climbs and I found myself getting passed by a few guys that looked like they hadn't done this race and were going too fast. I got passed again on the first long downhill by a group - they were all bombing down the hill like crazy. I don't do the psycho-downhill thing. My balance isn't great and I don't have many steep hills around to practice on. It works against me, because there is so much of this in the race and it's a great way to save time. Also, the speed-hiking thing; I'm not great, but I think I did pretty well. Run when you can and where it's too steep, speed-hike. When we got to the flat stretch headed toward Wattatic (actual running!), I began to pick up people again. Going up Wattatic I kept passing one after another. When I got to the turnaround, I think I was 19th. The way back, oh boy this is a tough race - especially when you hit Pratt Mountain - straight up. You've got to pace yourself in this race or pay, and on the way back, I could see a lot of the guys were paying their dues bigtime. Everyone I could see on the trail I eventually passed and ran alone the last two mountains to finish 9th or 10th? I'm not sure because they haven't posted the results on cool-running yet. Anyway, here are the stats:

Finish Time: 3:16 PR by about 15min
Overall place: 9th?
AG place: don't know
Number of falls: 2 pretty good diggers, no blood, nothing broken or falling off
Times off the trail: 1 (also a PR), followed others who ran the wrong way, cost about 2+min.

This race is a must do for any serious trail runner. You should try "running" it before racing it. You need to also carry water, as this year was very warm and bring nutrition as the aid stations only have water/gatorade. It is extremely challenging and you will be payed back by the beauty of these southern NH mountains and actually cross back into Massachusetts for a bit.

Anyway, I am pleased the race went well and I have nothing that hurts, besides the tight quads from all the pounding downhills. I'm ready to get seious about running for the fall and pick some races. I also want to finish up the tri-season with a couple more races. I will post a schedule when I figure things out.

Happy training,