Saturday, May 31, 2014

5th Annual Race For Chase 5k (Race Report)


The 5th Annual Race for Chase was my 4th entry into this race and my 2nd 5k trail race this week (Memorial Miracle Miles on Monday being the other). This year’s event was held a month or two earlier than in previous years, perhaps to beat the heat and mosquitoes. Only announced a few weeks ago, and facing competition from a well attended race less than twenty miles to the south, this year’s event turned out to be a little smaller than previous years. The perfect weather, however (clear, sunny, cool with low humidity) more than made up for it.

Around 30 runners toed the line for the 9:00AM start, making this the smallest event I’ve been part of so far this year, but as is the case with all the local running events, Valley Running Club was well represented.

Round Top courses are relatively tough. The 15 miles or so of available trails, split about evenly between buffed out grassy double track and gnarly carved out ATV routes, contains the potential for some rather nasty, climb filled mountain running. The 5k course sticks to the more tame side of the park; a bit of paved loop, dirt road, some grassy double track and a few hundred yards of single track - with just enough incline to make you work for your finish time.

This one little hill (seen above), about a quarter mile from the finish is a real leg burner at 5k pace (though you’d completely overlook it in a 25k). It sort of reminds me of the finish at Hyner - only at Hyner I wasn’t doing a sub-7 minute mile when I got to the bottom of it.

This year I reached the finish line in 3rd place overall, 2 minutes faster than last year (when I was deep into 50k training), though still 30 seconds slower than my course PR from 2010.

Maria was there also, looking good in a new pair of NB Minimus 1010. Good luck at Rothrock next weekend. Wish I could be there with you.

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