8/29/12: Today we raced at the new Lakewood course. Not only was the ground hard from lack of rain, but the course itself was just as challenging as the former one; it is almost a true 5K at 3.09 miles, and the terrain is very uneven, coupled with many twists and turns in the woods. We raced in trainers to keep shins and other ailments happy. The game plan for this race was to go out as a pack for the first mile and then see who could hang on. At the 800 mark, I could see that this narrow course was making it tough for our girls to find each other. Alexis got out very strong and was in the top 30, with Ana not far behind. Our pack then came through slightly slower than I would have hoped, followed up by Kimmy, Lindsay and Maira in a decent spot. Halie, Joseline and Ana had the best middle miles--they stayed awake and worked the tight course to pass people. Alexis woke back up for the final mile and finished very strong, nearly catching Ana at the finish. Halie, our third, finished with a very even mile split; she had the most consistent race out of our team for the day. Joseline was our 4th, followed by Bug, Lindsay, Kimmy and Maira. Overall, it was good to get a race under our belts, but everyone admitted that we have some work to do for upcoming races! We will be back to Lakewood two more times; I'm confident that we will race smarter on this challenging course next Saturday. Click here for splits.
8/30/12 Today, the girls had the choice between a 2-mile and a 3-mile race at Deerfield's course. Unfortunately, construction on a bridge has altered this course again, but our Bees took it in stride. We beat Deerfield, 21-38 due to a great pack up front, led by Rachel who set a new course record: 16:47! She looked gutsy and beat many boys, despite her hip troubles. She was followed by a nice pack of Karolina, Karli and Paris. Riley was almost on this pack, despite her mean hip. This group allowed us to have a great team score of 21! Other highlights: great mid-race tempo-changes by Monica, Jennifer, Yareli and Ashley to catch competitors around them. Also, Stephanie showed some dramatic improvements over her times from the summer. Overall, this race allowed our VERY young team to get some experience. Click here for splits.
The brave five who ran the 3-mile race also ran well. Ally went out hard, but needs to work on staying awake in her middle mile. Jasmine had a strong race and is showing that she is getting back into shape. It was great to see Angie race after her knees kept her away from serious training after Oshkosh. I know her times will continue to drop. Syra looked strong, especially compared to where she was at last year at this time! Finally, Violette, although only on the team for a couple of weeks, finished her race strong thanks to the support of her teammates. Click here for splits.
**Newbees--you can go to www.athletic.net, type Zion Benton in the search box, click on XC, and check out your times in the "Season Stats" section as the season progresses. This is a great resource for charting your progress each week and each year!
Overall, it was good to finally race! I look forward to running on our course on Tuesday. :)