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Downtown Temple,NH

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beaver Brook Snowshoe Race

The first race of the 2010 Granite State Snowshoe Series took place today on the trails of Beaver Brook in Hollis NH (results). Snow on demand over the last 24 hrs provided just enough ground cover for the roughly 5k out and back course. It turned out to be an all out snowshoe sprint with fast conditions and faster runners.

A pretty good turnout considering the weather, with 87 finishers. It was good to see my teammates from acidotic RACING show up in force, all 18 strong, for our first team win of the season.

The course is probably the easiest in the series, and definitely the shortest. With a cross country like start, the race starts in a large field before funneling the runners down at a 180 degree turn. From there it's all double track, slightly downhill to start and pretty darn flat after that until the 180 degree turn around point. It does finish on a slight uphill but nothing too difficult. The hardest part of the race was just how fast it was.

photo credit - Scott Mason

Once we got the GO command I was immediately blinded by all the fresh powder being kicked up. It wasn't until we took the 180 degree turn that I could actually see where I was going. I  passed maybe 3 or 4 folks in the first few minutes and settled into the 5th spot. Jim Johnson and aR teammate Tim Cox were dueling up front, with Bob "I hope there's no dogs on this course" Jackman a short distance back, followed by Dave Dunham and finally myself. I tried desperately to stay with DD but more importantly stay ahead of Matt Westerlund and Chris Dunn who were just a few steps behind me the entire way.

I hit the turnaround in 8:40, probably 10 seconds behind DD and an equal amount ahead of Matt and Chris. Oh, and I was hurting...bad. I'm sure I scared a few of the local folks who were out on the trails xc skiing, sounding like a wounded moose with my breathing. I was doing everything I could to hold off Matt and Chris.
I could hear them behind me but I didn't know how close. In typical me fashion I wouldn't turn around to look, mostly afraid of what I might see (like two guys right on my heels). Finally, I could see the finish and made one last push, just in case they were close behind. I crossed the line in 17:22, 5th overall with nearly an identical split on the way back in 8:42. Man I hate short races!

Scott Mason took some great photos which can be viewed here.

Race video and additional pics can also be seen here.

Preliminary TOP 10:

Place Time    Pts  Name                   Team                      Age Sex Bib City St            
===== ======= ===== ==== ====================== ========================= === === === ================== 
    1   15:48  100 Jim Johnson            CMS POLAR BEARS            32 M    98 Salem NH           
    2   16:24   96 Tim Cox                ACIDOTIC RACING            36 M   191 Northwood NH       
    3   16:43   94 Robert Jackman         TUESDAY NIGHT TURTLES      27 M   178 Warwick RI         
    4   17:10   92 Dave Dunham            CMS POLAR BEARS            45 M    24 Ward Hill MA       
    5   17:22   90 Steve Wolfe            ACIDOTIC RACING            45 M    83 Merrimack NH       
    6   17:34   89 Matt Westerlund                                   37 M   197 Laconia NY         
    7   17:40   89 Chris Dunn             ACIDOTIC RACING            41 M    25 Strafford NH       
    8   18:12   86 Danny Ferreira         ACIDOTIC RACING            27 M   159 Concord NH         
    9   18:21   86 Sean Snow              GRANITE STATE RACING TEAM  43 M    99 Dunbarton NH       
   10   18:43   84 Christopher Smith      DUNGEON ROCK RACING        43 M    71 Woburn MA          


Jim Hansen said...

Very nice race today, Steve!
I like the photo on Scott Mason's site with your eyes popping out a whole lot better!

Steve Wolfe said...

Thanks Jim. It felt like a track workout with snowshoes!

Dan said...

Steve, you were smokin'...and you ran fast too!

double-d said...

I was 8:33 at the turn and feeling awful. I thought you'd get me on the way back. I kept thinking "make it to the hill". That course is WAY too fast. See you out at the next one!

CHRIS J. DUNN said...

Great race Mr. Wolfe. A very strong showing as usual. Heck, if you actually took a rest day before a race you may just win one of these!

Steve Wolfe said...

Dave, I was just happy to keep you in my sights as long as I did. I couldn't close the gap. I'll keep trying though :-)

Chris, rest day? What the heck is that??