Sunday, November 18, 2007

Unlucky 13

11:30 AM - 13 miles - Franklin Park.
New England Cross Country Championships 10K (13th, 31:55). 20:00 warmup & strides, 28:00 cooldown.

5:45 PM - 5 miles, 37:55 - Pakachoag 5.
Post-race shake prior to the Pats game. Same loop as yesterday morning, but slower. A lot slower.

Bittersweet day at good ol' Franklin Park. Personally, I raced a helluva lot better than I did at Mayor's Cup, coming through 8K about 25 seconds faster today than I raced flat out for the distance three weeks ago. Teamwise, we ran pretty well on the whole but still lost to the rival Unicorns by a mere five points. Jeff, Roland and Justin placed 1, 2 and 4 respectively, but our fourth guy finished too far back for us to bring home the team title.

For the record, I was that fourth guy.

I fought and fought some more, but just couldn't close the gaps between myself and the blue singlets up ahead. Carter and Ferenc never came back after the initial split and Matt Ely absolutely lambasted my sorry ass over the final 2K. I tried like hell to pick up a few spots but I felt like I was caught between third and fourth gear for much of the race. Every time I tried throwing it into fifth to make a move, it was like the transmission got stuck. Hopefully some maintenance work over the next three weeks helps take care of this problem.

Disappointments aside, it did feel good to strap on the spikes again and get another race under my belt. I'm excited to do it again at Club Nationals in three weeks and I think our squad is ready to make some serious noise in the cross country capital of the Midwest, West Chester, Ohio.

Last, but certainly not least, congrats to the ladies of NB Boston on an impressive victory today, as well as our own Jeff Caron for taking home the individual crown in the men's race. Way to represent!

Quote of the Day

"6 miles...10,000 meters over hill and dale out in the middle of nowhere. Spit freezing on your goddamn chin. Five hundred complete wild men in the mud, running up on your heels with long spikes. Oh, I love cross country all right. I also like being flayed alive with a rusty straight razor."
- Everybody's hero, Quenton Cassidy, capturing the essence of this crazy business they call cross country.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mario-
I ran today and was cheering you on with the Reebok Boston women's team and you should be proud of your run today! You were awesome and so inspiring to watch! One on of the gals told me you had a blog...so hope you don't mind me visiting. I was really inspired by the talent in our club...men's and women's.

Anonymous said...

Oops, I meant to say YOUR club...I don't run for a club so fast.

Kevin Tilton said...

Nice job today. The lack of ability to change gears is nothing to worry about. You're running great workouts and getting back into the swing of xc racing. You'll be ready to go at Club Nats.