Toughest N' Texas 50K - RunUltra Marathon

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Waco, Texas
United States
Tim Neckar
60F / 16C
Total Time = 5h 04m 27s
Overall Rank = 2/31
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Got to the race maybe 35-30 minutes before the 50ks scheculed start of 0700. Grabbed my packet and waited for Scott (Ironmonger) to show up. We chatted for a bit, changed into our race gear, I boom boomed, and we headed for the start line!
Event warmup:

Potty break.
  • 5h 04m 27s
  • 31.07 miles
  • 09m 48s  min/mile

The course was 3 loops of ~10.3 miles.

Loop 1:

We started and I was hanging out in 2nd place. The course stays flat next to the Brazos for a little bit, then takes a hard left onto a knarly climb. I think at this time I had pulled up into first and was just keeping the pace super easy and relaxed. It was me and another guy named Lance for the time being.

The course was AMAZING. Super steep climbs with some rocky sections. I was pulling ahead at times, but the course had SO many turns that I wasn't confident enought to run way off the front. Finally I just slowed a bit, so that Lance and I could run together.

I came to the first water crossing and quickly realized that I wouldn't be getting through this thing without getting my feet completely submerged, so I just jumped in and got it done!

Got through the first aid station and the guy in third was catching us. Finally we slowed enough for him to catch us, so the three of us were running in a train. We had quite a gap now and were hopefully pulling ahead. We all chatted it up and just kept the pace reasonable. I found out the guy in third was Scott Eppelman (sp?). He lives up in the Dallas area and is a part of NTTR. (North Texas Trail Runners) I found out he's like a 5-6 time Hardrock 100 finisher, not to mention all the other huge 100s. (Western States, etc)

I ran the majority of this lap in 1st but the three of us were no more than 5 seconds apart at any time. We all three came off the 1st loop together in about 1:34. Lance went through pretty quick and was out a ways ahead of me and Scott. I was out last, but quickly caught up to Scott for the start of Lap 2.

Lap 2:

Scott and I ran against the Brazos for the first half mile or so and took that hard left of that knarly climb. We went up and up this ravine type thing with sticks and tree limbs everywhere. Scott was in front and missed the right run out of nowhere, so I shouted at him and we headed on.

All the sudden Lance POPS outta nowhere. He had taken a wrong turn and now we were all together again! Well, we trained our way through the trail and pulled into the first aid station again. Here Lance again went off the front (about 15 miles in) and this was the last time we'd see him. Scott and I just chatted it up and enjoyed the awesome single track. I was feeling really good considering the 15 miler I'd run a few days before.

When we got to super steep inclines Scott would still run 'em, but I'd just power walk behind him. (About the same speed) Almost to the last aid station on this loop there is a knarly descent in a ravine type thing where you can run up on the sides for momentum. We were running down pretty quick this leaf covered trail, and all the sudden I stepped on a stick. Well it was a LOT bigger than I thought and it popped up out of the leaf and went straight into my THIGH! I flipped over and landed flat on my back! Ugh. Mud all over me and the noise of my body hitting the ground was LOUD! Scott turned around and asked if I'd been "body slammed". haha.

I walked it off and we pulled our way into the third aid station. Soctt and I finished this loop together in 1:42:51. I hit up the aid station here, and the people taking numbers said they hadn't seen first place. Scott and I assumed that Lance had taken a wrong turn and that we were now leading.

Lap 3:

Scott and I pull out for the 3rd and final loop. I'm still feeling pretty good, but definitely ready to walk all the big inclines. We took that hard left up the steep incline and Scott was actually walking the uphills at this point. I could tell his was getting fatigued a bit. About 1-2 miles into this loop I saw my chance and pushed an uphill to pull away. I increased the apce enough that I was out of sight of Scott. From here on out I just ran/walked scared thinking I was possibly in first.

I was walking all the steep inclines but running everything else. I never saw any sign of Lance so I assumed he either got lost, or was a ways ahead. Once I was at the last aid station they informed me i was in 2nd. Well... 2nd it would be! Finally around mile 28 I was pretty much "running" everything. I started warming up quite a bit so I pulled my shirt off and tucked it in my shorts. It felt totally awesome to run through the trees without my shirt.

I reached this "bamboo" section of the course and knew I was almost done. Reached a road to cross that had another knarly climb called the "root canal". Headed up that running the majority and knew that once I topped it out I was done. I kept glancing behind me to see if Scott was there, but he was nowhere to be found.

Rounded the last corner and crossed the finish line to find out I was indeed 2nd place overall.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. I think I had a great race considering my training. Good mental toughness and well played race tactics.
Post race
Warm down:

Beer and a hamburger.

Event comments:

Overall this is an amazing trail run. I'd even recommend this to my out of state friends. While it's not big (AT ALL) it's on an amzing course in the heart of Waco, Tx. The course could have been marked a bit better, but then again it is a trail race, and what's a good trail race without some confusion?!


Last updated: 2010-02-23 12:00 AM
05:04:27 | 31.07 miles | 09m 48s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 2/31
Performance: Good
3 Laps. Lap 1: 1:34:36 / Lap 2: 1:42:51 / Lap 3: 1:46:59
Course: Hilly, technical, knarly single track in Cameron Park (Waco, Tx). 3-4 water crossings, with plenty of rocky sections... shaded sections, etc. Absolutely gorgeous course.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5