Monday, February 7, 2011

Exeter Race Double- Ferreira is a Snowshoe and Swimming Machine!

This weekend we did the Exeter Race Double- Exeter Snowshoe Hullabaloo on Saturday and the Philips Exeter Swim Masters Mini-Meet on Sunday. The Hullabaloo was the best snowshoe race of the year so far. The terrain was amazing, all single track(which stunk if you tried to pass but great for enjoyable running). The soup at the finish was delicious, they had coffee and hot chocolate... You can see where my priorities are. The race started out as they all do-fast! This was a tricky one though due to the nature of the course. Being all single-track you didn't want to go out too fast and slow down people behind you, nor did you want to get stuck behind someone slow. However, despite the potential issues with pacing, I thought I had done a great job finding a place, I could envision myself: right behind Robert Jackman of TNT and a guy from Winner's Circle who looked legit. The front runners included Double J of CMS, Geoff Cunningham, Ryan Kelly and Tim Cox of acidotic Racing, and Wesley Dinman who had a very strong Sidehiller showing. Those guys plus Winner's Circle, Jackman and a potential couple other runners were the predicted winners. Sure enough, Double J took off and I don't think he ever relinquished the lead with Dinman and Cunningham coming in 2nd and 3rd.

I took off behind all those guys pacing off of the Winner's Circle runner for about a half mile before he courteously let me pass. I quickly caught up to another runner(unknown), who took about a mile of encouragement prior to letting me pass. This was the only frustrating aspect of the whole race trying to pass this guy. Once I did, I slowly crept upon Robert Jackman who was running a strong race. He and I ran together for probably close to two miles(him pulling the whole time) before we started to reel in Kelly. Seeing Kelly and knowing that it was his second race of the day, I encouraged Jackman to catch him at which point he graciously let me take the lead to catch Kelly. He stuck with for about another half mile before falling off, slightly. I caught Kelly with about a mile to go at which point, I could tell he was fading fast. He put in a concerted effort to keep ahead of me, but I finally passed him with less than a quarter mile to go. I ended up 5th, Kelly 6th right behind and Jackman 7th. Ryan Welts also of aR had an excellent race as well pulling in a solid 8th. Amber finished just out of the top ten overall in 11th, a good 3-4 minutes ahead of the second female.

The second race of the weekend was actually several races: I did the 50, 100, 200 yard freestyle, the 50 butterfly and the 1650 free. Amber did the 100 and 200 yard free, the 50 and 100 butterfly and the 1650 free. Amber's sister, Deidre, who came up for the day did the 50, 100, 200 yard freestyle, the 50 butterfly and the 100 IM. Both Amber and Deidre showed why they are good triathletes placing very well in all of their events. I on the other hand, was seeded with the octogenarians and still finished nearly last for each event. I was disqualified from the butterfly due to use of the flutterkick(apparently you need to do a dolphin kick), belly flopped off the blocks once, lost my goggles off the blocks twice and lost my shorts of the block all five times. The nicest compliment anyone paid me all day was that I did a very nice job pulling up my shorts with both hands to avoid disqualification(I think they were joking). I did end up swimming under 30 minutes for the 1650(29:46) so that is promising for St. George. Amber swam a 21 and is also looking ready to take on the Ironman events that she has signed up for.

All in all, a very nice blend of athletic events, good meals, fun atmospheres and good friends made our Exeter Race Double a very fun one.

Up Next: Amber will be competing in this Saturday's Horsehill while I cheer on St. Michael's and my sister at her last college home game. Good luck to everyone racing! 

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