Sunday, June 24, 2012

Scorched Sole 50k Race Report

I am happy to say that even after all my moaning and excuses in my last post, I was able to pull up my compression socks and put together a solid race at the Scorched Sole 50k ultra in Kelowna. It was a beautiful and challenging three lap course weaving up, down and around Knox Mountain. With breathtaking views (figuratively) and breathtaking climbs (literally), this course had a little bit of everything. There were a few short technical sections and some cruise-y single-track trails that I particularly enjoyed as you could really open up and give 'er.

It was along one of these fast rolling switchbacks about 10k in that I caught my toe on a tree root and took a tumble. I wasn't hurt but the thick layer of dirt and blood smeared along the left side of my body must have looked nasty as I got a lot of concerned looks and comments from people along the course. I wasn't there to look pretty so I just carried on and the wonderful first aid girl (sorry I didn't get your name) cleaned me up at the finish.

With 25k (one lap) and 50mi (five laps) events also going on, there was some overlap between the races, which was kind of nice. The course was never crowded, but there were enough runners out there to keep it interesting. I ran the first two laps with the two lead men. Both were really nice guys and I enjoyed their company and conversation. (Thanks Loic and Adam!)

For the final lap, I decided to go hard and see what my legs had left in them. I pulled ahead of the guys to take the overall lead, which of course further propelled me to push the pace to see if I could hold on to it. I managed to and finished in a time of 5:15. (I'm hoping that Ryne will forgive me for not exactly following his advice. I think his exact words were: "Don't go bonkers this weekend at Scorched Sole".) Well, I might have gone a little bonkers but I haven't been feeling super fit post-Elk/Beaver so I needed a little confidence boost.

Other than some serious humidity, the weather was perfect - cool, with a slight breeze and only a few drops of rain. Not long after I finished, though, the rain clouds rolled in and released a torrential downpour. I have huge respect for all the racers and volunteers still on the course at this point because it was pretty miserable. Because of the abrupt and unpleasant change in the weather, I didn't stick around too long at the finish, but I did get to see Mel Bos take the overall win in the 50mi race. Yay, Mel!

Even with a slightly shredded thigh and elbow, it was a fantastic day! The race directors created a wicked course and all the volunteers, spectators and racers that I met were absolutely super.

I can probably stop posting this as it hardly ever changes, but here it is again...

What I had on me:
Brooks Cascadias
Injinji toesocks
New Balance split short
Random technical t-shirt
Brooks cap
Nathan hydration pack

What I had in me:
Oatmeal with almonds and chia seeds and a cup of black tea (for breakfast)
1 bottle Gu Brew (before the start)
1 Gu gel (before the start)
4 Gu gels diluted in a flask
10 Clif bloks
Chips and Coke (from the aid station)

Next up, the Canadian Mountain Running Championships at Cypress Mountain in North Vancouver. Yee haw!

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