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McDowell Sonoran Challenge - Run15k

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Scottsdale, Arizona
United States
McDowell Sonoran Conservancy
60F / 16C
Total Time = 56m 43s
Overall Rank = 1/96
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Jamie and I signed up for this race just last week after I received an e-mail from my manager saying we had free entries available as Wells Fargo was a main sponsor. The race has a 20 mile MTB competition and a 15K run or hike. We signed up for the run, a great freebie!
Event warmup:

The race was staged at the far north end of Alma School Rd. where it ends and becomes part of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. The race is a fund raiser to protect desert land from development. We had never been on these trails and were excited to check it out. We also had no idea what the course was like and I hoped it was well marked!
  • 56m 42s
  • 8.8 miles
  • 06m 26s  min/mile

They sent the MTB'ers off first and all the runners lined up in the chute behind them. I was right at the front, although it was a timed race, so it didn't really matter where you started. As soon as we went, I hit the front to see if anyone would come with me. Within the first mile I felt like I was very much alone and was even starting to catch bikers. I was running very hard and felt uncomfortable. It's hard for me to get into a rhythm on the trails early in a race as the terrain is so variable. In general, the course was not technical and footing was very good. There were a lot of up and downs that you had to be patient and a bit careful with.

So I am settling in approaching mile 3 thinking I am good to go and just need to do the work....when a guy comes running by me! He mde a very decisive pass and I was like, uh-oh, you never know who will show up. I was already pushing what i felt was appropriate effort at this part of the race, so I let him go, hoping he was a 5-10K kind of guy. Regardless, there was too much race left to turn myself inside out at this point. I would just have to wait and see if he came back to me or took off and dissapeared up the trail

The middle miles of the race were a lot of fun. My nemesis up ahead had gaped me by maybe 30 feet but he was just hanging around up there. We both had to negotiate around more MTB's but everyone was cool and made room. Somewhere past mile 6, we came to a broad, flat stretch and my legs suddenly came alive, I felt great all of a sudden and was flying. Suddenly 30 feet were down to 10. I knew he could hear me and wondered if he would or could respond. Just past mile 7, there was a final aid station and he actually grabbed some water. I was thinking I should Macca him for slowing to take aid!

But I knew the pass was inevitable and on a long climb, a ran up alongside and and past with as much self assurance as I could muster. Once by, I had to make it stick and pushed the hill to the top. His breathing sounded labored and I knew I had to give him no chance to respond. So for the next 1.5 miles, I ran as hard as i could and never looked back. I had no idea where the Finish line was, so I just made little deals with myself to run as hard as I could to each turn in the trail and then recover and see what was coming next. the finish arch appeared just in time.
Post race
Warm down:

After he crossed, I went over to talk to him and he was a great guy. 31 years old, moved here last year, and did a 9:55 at this last IMAZ, so solid athlete. He won this race last year. Then Jamie crossed and took 3rd female overall! So the Dunn's went home with the trophy's and combined $75 gift cards at a local running store. We actually made a profit at this race!

Event comments:

This was a really fun event with a great turnout. I learned a little today about how much patience and consistency in a race can pay off and I am proud I hung in there when I was passed, didn't get discouraged, and allowed the race to come back to me.

Last updated: 2011-01-24 12:00 AM
00:56:42 | 08.8 miles | 06m 26s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 1/96
Performance: Good
Course: Although billed as a 15K, everyone's Garmin came in around 8.8. For a looped desert trail course, it's hard to get it exactly right.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2011-01-29 4:45 PM

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Fountain Hills, AZ
Subject: McDowell Sonoran Challenge

2011-01-29 10:05 PM
in reply to: #3328758

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: McDowell Sonoran Challenge
wow. grear race and great report.
2011-01-30 8:20 AM
in reply to: #3328758

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Goodyear, AZ
Subject: RE: McDowell Sonoran Challenge

Very exciting play by play Bryan! Congrats to you and Jamie!  

2011-01-31 4:43 PM
in reply to: #3328758

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Subject: RE: McDowell Sonoran Challenge
nice race report. Good job.
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