Friend of Hudson Elite, Mario Macias, was last seen December 2014. So when he reached out to us on Tuesday about a 10 miler race - in Kansas - we were surprised, yet intrigued. The Lake Atwood 10 Miler is and 8+ lap race in a town smaller than your average high school (population ~1,100). Yet, it involved a unique team competition, where three athletes scored, with the top three teams winning prize money. Given that the winner last year ran 53:10, we figured it'd be a walk in the park.
Boy were we wrong.
There was some stiff competition thanks to another CO team, plus the Duma (Kenyans) Running Club out of Minnesota. So the plan of running 5:30s for easy $ was out the door.
From the gun, you knew two teams were in position fighting for first: Duma and us. Immediately there was a front pack of 7, composed of 4 Duma runners (they brought an extra in case someone dropped out), 2 of us (Carlos and Mario), and an unattached guy. Alex was all alone in 8th after 100m.
The hot early pace (first 2K ~6:05) for the leaders proved too much for two Duma runners, as Alex blew by them after one lap (both eventually dropped out, disqualifying them from the team competition). On the sixth lap, Mario threw down a surge, which immediately broke the pack, dropping one of the Duma runners and the unattached runner (who then dropped out). The top three (Mario, Carlos, and Duma#1) were equally spread out. In the words of cheerleader and photographer extraordinaire, Layna Oyervides, "And then Mario pulled away from you guys. It was more an exponential sort of thing. [Carlos was] ten yards ahead of the Kenyan and Mario was 100."
Meanwhile, Alex was concerned that he was ahead of Duma#3 for the team title, but he was comforted that he couldn't see them behind him, since they had dropped out. Alex stayed engaged for the rest of the race by encouraging lapped runners.
Mario took home the W, with Carlos the first loser in ~51:20. Alex rounded out the scoring in ~53:40. But the real fun was the long cool-down, because we all know there's no reason to do 8 laps when you can do 16! (To be fair, it was a pretty nice lake.)
All in all, our first trip to Kansas was a solid success. That said, do NOT eat Sonic the night before a race, no matter what Carlos tells you! "Meal of Champions" - Carlos
Until next time,
-Carlos & Alex