Monday, July 13, 2009

The Vermont 100: Race Preview we go. Race week.

This Saturday I will stand, in the dark, at the starting line of the Vermont 100 outside Brownsville VT....for what will be my first attempt at completing a 100 mile ultrarun. I have never attempted a race longer than 50 miles, and so this will be quite an experience.

The Vermont 100 is a classic in the in underworld circuit of ultras. Something about the rolling hills of vermont, in the heat of the summer, and the creative aid station themes, that has allowed this one of a kind race to achieve an almost legendary status.

I had a rather successful day at the finger lakes 50 last weekend and plan on utilizing a very similar attack strategy. I have 1 very simple goal for this race:

To cross the finish line in the 30 hour time limit.

There is also a secondary goal of finishing in under 24hrs and winning on of the famous buckles! However even if I quit at mile 51, I will have gone farther than I've ever gone.

Getting the supplies and logistics in order for this race are quite involved. I will have drop bags, and head lamps, and caffeine tablets, and ibuprofin, and a possible pacer. Things will just be different. I've never had to run long distances in the dark. I've never had to do mandatory medical checkpoints. I have certainly had to deal with being in the middle of nowhere and fighting the urge to just stop (ie several days on the Appalachian Trail), but never while in an actual timed race. I also don't do particularly well in very sunny hot conditions. Right now, race day is calling for partly cloudy with temps in the mid 70's. This isn't terrible, but it isn't great either.

Schedule of Events for the RACE:

Friday, July 17th, 2009 - Camping at Silver Hill Meadow opens. Portable toilets will be available.

PRE-RACE CHECK IN from 9:30 to 3:45 - all runners must submit to a physical exam which will involve checking vital signs and weight in running gear. This is not a complete physical. Runners must show evidence of adequate training and be knowledgeable about stress factors of prolonged exercise in adverse conditions.

RUNNERS AND CREW BRIEFING MEETING at 4 PM - Attendance at this meeting is
required for all runners, handlers and pacers. We will review trail conditions, aid and medical station locations and procedures and any special situations. This is the time to get your questions answered.

PASTA DINNER - Served in the main tent at Silver Hill Meadow at 5:30 PM
Saturday, July 18th 2009 - All runners must check in with the timer between 3 and 3:45 AM.

Sunday, July 19th 2009 - 10 AM course closes

BRUNCH - served at 10:30 AM at Silver Hill Meadow

AWARDS CEREMONY - At Silver Hill Meadow at 12 Noon. All runners finishing in less than 24 hours will receive a VT 100 belt buckle. All finishers between 24 and 30 hours will receive a plaque

Something else to consider. The Vermont 100 does not offer the luxury of "flat sections". You are either going up, or going down. The elevation profile looks like a seismogram!

I guess if I had one thing to say is that I'm going to go out there and have fun. I'm going to plod along and enjoy myself. Yes it will hurt....yes it will be hot, yes I will dream of quitting. But I will fight to finish until I have nothing left with which to fight....or I'm out of time.

1 comment:

Jeremiah said...

Hey Lakewood,

Good luck this saturday on your first 100 miler! My eyes popped out of my head when I saw the elevation chart for your run! Unreal!

It seems like you are doing the priest and the 3 ridges mnts like 50 times! ;O)

Happy Running!