Thanksgiving Weekend – 4 Races, 4 Days
This weekend I again supported All Community Events in what seems to have become a traditional weekend of races.
Thanksgiving Morning – Long Grove Turkey Trot
5K with 1200+ runners circumnavigating downtown Long Grove. Across the famous Long Grove wooden bridge, across the foot bridge that was my Eagle Scout project (which is now 12 years old and still standing), and then through the park where they have summer concerts to finish coming out from under the covered bridge. After course set up, I got to be lead biker. My number one rule on raceday…stay away from registration. The race went out blazing and then slowed. At mile 2.5 I handed off the lead vehicle responsibility to manage the busiest intersection in the race…closing IL Rte 53. The police support was the best I have seen it. Most of the time after a few minutes they get flustered and try to interrupt the race, yet the sun shined and the officers were great in keeping it safe for all. Clean up went quick and then I jumped on my bike for a 55 mile trail ride to my Aunt & Uncle’s for Thanksgiving.
Black Friday – Deerfield Turkey Trot
4 miles. This was a great course to have to set up. The only issue was the ground was frozen…Thursday was 50, Friday was 15. It was a great shock to the system. I think that all of us got a cold from this. The race was steady and there were no glitches or really anything eventful. It was get there, setup, race, clean up, and then get some workouts in and sleep…Because Saturday and Sunday would be the big days
Saturday – Schaumburg 1/2 Marathon & 5k
1300+ people. Build the start, but you can’t put it up because of bus traffic…Get everything ready so when it is time to start you can pull up the start banner, pull the timing mats across the road…after this was staged, it was off to finish the course setup. At 8 minutes to 9am, I get back to the start area, switch bikes and grab my helmet and bike shoes. Then it is off to the start where over a thousand people are standing waiting. Within seconds the banner goes up, the timing mats are across the road, the race is ready to roll…then a bus shows up that is now trapped in the out and back. After 3 minutes the bus is out of the way…The 1/2 starts 10 min before the 5K. The problem is, the out and back to start the race is 2 mi…The leader was approaching the start line as the 5K hounds were released. For 40 seconds I was like salmon going up stream. People with Ipod’s not paying attention were nearly getting crushed as I tried to clear a path for the 1/2 leader. One guy was so oblivious and startled that we punched me in the face…the lead biker just took a shot to the face. After about 5 seconds I came back around and got back in front of the leader and lead him through the course. He blazed a 1:11 half…5:27’s. Clean up was easy, load everything back up, keeping in mind we are racing the same course tomorrow.
Sunday – Schaumburg 1/2 Marathon
Set up was easy. 1) We did it yesterday (and the day before and before that) 2) A lot of stuff was still set up from yesterday. 10 minutes to race start all the volunteers were toe tapping, just waiting for the race start. Finally, 10 minutes later, the hounds were off. Again a 1:11 half…5:29 pace…would’ve been a great race had the Sat & Sun fields raced each other. Clean up was tough. 2000 runners worth of gels in the ditch every where. I walked 4 miles (8 miles of the course) picking up hundreds of gels. I can tell you that Gu is the industry leader with Power Gel a distant second, and Cliff, Accelerade, Hammer making small ditch efforts. After clean up…I slept for hours. I needed to sleep for days…
Now it is time for December. Time to train…Congrats to all that competed in the All Community Events this weekend.