June 29, 2010

Mission Accomplished - M6!


This will just be a quick cap as we're about to hit the open road towards home here shortly. We realized we couldn't say bye to our beautiful hotel bed in favor of a tent just yet and extended our stay in Auburn by one night. It's been fun to actually explore the town a bit, especially Old Auburn, though walks have been limited to about 250 meters at a time...and we turned back once we hit an insane 7% uphill grade on a street yesterday morning...regretted attempting it for hours afterwards!

WESTERN STATES!!

Honestly I'm on top of the world right now. Sixth overall in a time of 17h06m is honestly right around where I truly felt I could be, but to actually achieve it on race day is a completely other thing entirely!

I am ecstatic with how my race unfolded. I started conservatively, somewhere back around 35th over The Escarpment. From there I slowly moved up about ten spots through the snow running towards the Poppy Trailhead aid station to come through in about 25th. By the time I reached my crew at Robinson Flat, mile 30 / km 50 I was in 12th! This was further up than I thought I'd be, but I knew I'd been smart up till then and hadn't done anything stupid.


I slowly but surely continued picking people off and once I hit the final 20miles after the river I let loose. It was great running with my friend and teammate Matt Hart and I had a battle back and forth with fellow Canadian Glen Redpath. In the end I was jumping for joy as I snagged sixth overall in one of the most competitive Western States ever staged! (though that seems to be the case every year)

I've compared my closing splits with the top seven and only Geoff, Tony, and Nick Clark managed to find the line faster.

I could not have asked for a better result all things considered this year and I'm so happy with it that I constantly have to keep reminding myself that I didn't actually win the race...I just feel like I did right now!

I'll obviously post a race report that will be obscenely long by early next week. Then I'll take some time off and start pondering how the heck I'm supposed to take two full hours off my time by next year, lol!


GR

20 comments:

Derrick said...

Incredible race Gary. Amazing how smart you ran it and stuck to your plan. I am still blown away how you were able to rebound after Miwok, listen to your body, rest and then have the confidence to nail it the way you did. Your mental strength is truly remarkable.

Congrats again and looking forward to reading all the details.

ultrarunnerbrianphilpot said...

Great job!!!

Bryon Powell said...

Gary,
Congrats on having such a great race. Even more important, it seems like you had a great experience. You were beaming at Highway 49! Hope to see you again soon.

-Bryon

Ray said...

Unreal. It seemed like you were mostly resting not training. How the heck did you perform so well, especially with this race's past history (heat) beating you down. Amazing.

Mountain Way said...

You'da man garry!!

Watched the progress over the net all night/ early morning. Great to see!!

Seems like it's all bout the 2-month taper ;)Shows how there are many ways to get to the line and how years of training can pay divedends in surprising ways.

Recover well.

Anonymous said...

The picture shows you clearly crossing the starting line in 1st place and then you finish only 6th -- So, what the heck is wrong with you?

But seriously, special congrats to you Gary -- your achievements this year blow my mind.

I think all of you (including Tamsin) did an outstanding job -- way beyond any physical or mental strength/endurance I can imagine.

-Ruedi

Rick Gaston said...

Good deal Gary! Amazing performance especially when I think about the heat problems you had last year, diagnosis of fatique and exhaustion after the Miwok 100k dnf this year. Way to bounce back and take names out there.

Doone said...

Awesome Gary - your break from training and ability (and willingness) to listen to your body paid out dividends. Congratulations on a smart race - and now give your self some time to heal up - you burnt rubber out there!!!

ghostfeather said...

Rocked it boy! Smart, strong race, Gary. Congratulations!
Tim

Jason Eads said...

Amazing Gary, well done! Not to worry about shaving off two hours. It won't ALWAYS take 15hrs to win it, although owning the States course record would be a tale to tell ;-)

In any case, it was a phenominal race you ran and I'm glad you're taking a little time to enjoy it after the fact.

Your approach to the race weeks out, your performance during the event and the fact that you're taking time to celebrate it - VERY INSPIRING!

olga said...

You had a great day, and I got a couple of pictures to prove it! It was awesome to see your smile - and feel an incredible excitement at the finish line. If you want those shots, I am at olgav100@gmail.com. Congrats, and see you next year at Squaw!

Rob said...

Congrats Gary...amazing result and you deserve it!

(PS. To be in the ultra club it looks like you need to grow yourself a beard and shaggy hair!)

dvroes said...

Gary,
It was great to see you again and I'm so glad that you were able to run such a great race. I hope Tamsin is coming along ok. Her performance was incredible - just being able to run it was pretty amazing. Hey, you took Geoff's record down at HURT - who knows???
Get some rest and back at 'em.

Scott said...

Looking at the top few racers, I would say one way to "shave" those two hours off is to grow a beard.

Congrats Gary. Amazing run.

Chris in RVA said...

Well done, Gary.

Check it!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32999114@N03/4748200644/sizes/l/in/set-72157624389425674/

Chris in RVA said...

And here...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32999114@N03/4748201086/sizes/l/in/set-72157624389425674/

Jarhead said...

So amazing Gary, congrats on a spectacular run!

Next year I'll be on the ball and organized and get my parents to put you up for a few nights...

Scott Keeps Running said...

Amazing showing, Gary. Congrats again.

olga said...

The two of you - you and Glenn - during run and at the finish line looked so much like kids! It was a hell of a race. I am glad I got to watch it. I have a few pictures and could email them to you. olgav100@gmail.com

Krissy said...

Your hug and smile at the Auburn track told me everything I'd hoped for you. Congrats Gary! Incredible comeback and run. Look forward to reading the report!