Sunday, May 18, 2008

Berryman Trail 50 Mile

Carey Smith

Paul Shoenlaub (shorty)
Me, Tony Clark, Stacey Amos at the start

mile 8
Me and Tony finish 1st loop in 3:33 only 25 miles to go
coming into Brazil Creek A.S. mile 40
Mile 44 Getting a bit warm
Tony finishes first place 7:37
2nd place 7:54
Adrian hanging out with Angel and Tony Clark at the finish

With the help of Tony Clark I set a 50 mile P.R. this weekend. This would be my 3rd year at this race. I finished in 9:20 in 2005 and 10:11 in 2006. My goal for this race was just to get a final fitness test in for Western States 100. I've run a 50 miler about every 3 weeks for the last 9 weeks. At the start I met up with Tony. He had never run this course before so we agreed to run together for a little while. The race director said go and we were off, 80 runners in the 50 mile and 120 in the marathon. Tony and I set a relaxed pace and were somehow in the lead. The plan was to fill up at every other aid station to help get in easy miles while the temps were still cool. We stopped for water at mile 8.33, 1:09 wondering where all the fast marathoners were at. No one had passed us yet and I was worried that the pace was a little to fast. We continued on and were finally passed by 2 marathoners at mile 12. Ran into Brazil Creek A.S. 15.55 in just over 2 hrs. Once you reach Brazil Creek you have 2 miles of hills that seem to take forever then just 8 more miles to the start/finish area. I finished the first loop in 3:33 and told Tony to go ahead while I changed shoes to prevent a blister problem. Took off for the second loop at a consistent pace still running all the hills and taking a GU every half hour. By the time I hit Brazil Creek mile 40 6:05 I was getting a bit soft in the head, it was warming up real good now. Prospects of finishing under 8 hrs were fading fast. I tried explaining this to my wife Kristi but she would have none of it, basically she told me to shut up and run! The next few miles were mostly hills so I would pick out a tree in the distance run to it, and then walk to the next tree and repeat. There are some excellent down hill sections that are fun to charge down and you can make up time for walking the hills. Finally I got to the last aid station only 2.3 miles to go and 25 min to do it in. I knew the last mile was pretty much flat so I jogged the hills and attacked the downhills. Crossed the finish line and pretty much collapsed, the heat and exhaustion I'd been trying to ignore caught up to me. It felt so good to be done.

SLUGS put on quality races. Thank you David and Victoria!! I'll be back next year I'm sure. It was good seeing old friends and making new ones. Thanks for pushing me on that first loop Tony.