XTERRA Col. Francis Beatty Trail Run

By Marcus Barton

One of my great loves is trail running.  After all, it was during a trail run, many moons ago, that a buddy and I discussed doing triathlons.  It was during that trail run that I first heard of XTERRA.  I would make a decision shortly thereafter to give triathlons a shot.

Anyhow, once I found out that a 10k XTERRA trail run would  be right in my back yard on August 22nd, I HAD to race it.  Francis Beatty is a local park that is literally less than 15 minutes from my house.  With it’s six miles of trails that are relatively flat and somewhat technical, Beatty is a great place to do a tempo mountain bike ride.  It’s also a great place to get in a good run.

Race day, there was a crowd of a little over 60 folks showed up for the inaugural race.  In the crowd were good friends including Dan and Kim Kimball, Gary Butts, Bjorn Erik Norman, and Zoe Meinecke (to name but a few).  We were all pretty stoked about the race and the weather was perfect.  We all lined up on the starting line with me sporting the orange banner for TrySports, my local tri shop friends.

Photo courtesy of Image Magic Photography 

We took off with a pretty strong pace to establish position prior to entering the trail head.  Dan and I slipped into the single track in 4th and 5th position with Bjorn with us in 6th.

Photo courtesy of Image Magic Photography

Dan, Bjorn and I stayed together for the first two miles at a steady, fast pace.  At about mile two, we passed Kasey Carter who seemed to be suffering from a debilitating side-stitch.  it sucked to see someone who was strongly in 3rd place have to give way due to something like that.  Dan and I continued our pursuit of Patrick Morgan and Sean Dunlap who were in 1st and 2nd respectively.  We kept Sean in sight through the switchbacks matching his pace.  Bjorn stuck with us but was ever-so-slowly falling behind.

Around mile 3, I hopped in front of Dan and told him that we should pick up the pace to catch Sean.  It was apparent that he had picked up his pace and I didn’t want him to get out of sight.  We dumped out onto the paved park road for 40 yards or so.  It allowed me to try and catch a glimpse at Sean to see how much of a lead he had.  I didn’t see him, so I picked up the pace a little more.  It wasn’t until around mile 5 that I would see him through the switchbacks.  I think he saw me as well because he picked up the pace even more.  I tried to match it but he would maintain a 45 second or so lead on me until the finish.

Photo courtesy of Image Magic Photography

Photo courtesy of Image Magic Photography

I would end up taking 3rd overall and 1st in my age group for the race.  My hat’s off to Tim and his family for putting on a great race.

Full results: http://www.dirtyspokes.com/forms/results/10xtnc082210.htm

Be a Warrior!