Friday, July 11, 2008

My ugly mug - South Dakota Racing

It was brought to my attention by a few friends that I have been honored to be placed on top of this year's Mt. Rushmore Marathon and Crazy Horse Marathon website.

The pictures from this race remain some of my favorites of all the races I ran in 2006. In fact, I actually ordered one of them and had it blown up poster-size specifically because of the grand nature of the Crazy Horse Monument behind me.

There were many good memories from that race that weekend and the stories I have to tell are one of the favorites chapters of mine in the book I am writing. This was the race where I was fortunate enough to finish third overall and win one of the coolest awards I have ever received: a 20 lb piece of rock hewn from the same hills as the Crazy Horse Monument.

In addition, I got to know, long after the race was over, the gentlemen picture below, who passed me around mile 22 and ended up leaving me in the dust for the last few miles, Mike Loos. I held him off just long enough so that the photographer could take this picture. One of my favorite things about this picture is how our legs are in the exact same position.

My trip to run the Mt. Rushmore Marathon was my second trip to the Black Hills of south Dakota in 2006. In Early June, my first race as a 30 year old was the Deadwood Michelson Trail Marathon. I am kicking myself as I did not know until after the event this year that the 2008 edition was the USATF's USA Marathon Trail Championships. I would have loved to have gone back there and tried that course with MUCH fresher legs. Alas.

The one thing I did notice is how stunningly beautiful this part of our country is and how unfortunate it is that so few people make it out there to see it. Fortunately, while marathons may not be for everyone, 10k races are.

In speaking with Mike Loos, we got to talking about a 10k in Rapid City, South Dakota that is sure to become a destination race. The Wellspring Stampede is its name and there is absolutely no reason, this race cannot turn into something akin to the Boilermaker in Utica, NY or the Bolder Boulder in Colorado: both races in far away places that have become absolute mammoths in the running community.

In only its 3rd year, the race has already attracted nearly 400 participants and is sure to double and triple in size soon. I am already making my plans and hopefully will not only be participating in this race next year but speaking there as well. I can only hope you will be joinging me as well.

For further information, you need to look no further than here to contact the race itself:

Mark Snyder
phone: (605) 718-4870
fax: (605) 718-4878

I am sure they would be happy to hear you heard about their race in my blog, so don't hesitate to mention it!

Furthermore, for a closer insight to the race, a very good friend and SD local, Amy Yanni, has this to say about the Wellspring Stampede.

Happy Running!

1 comment:

Chris said...

Wow, you should apply for a job with the South Dakota Division of Tourism :). You are right that a lot of people don't realize that there are actually mountains (other than Mt. Rushmore) and trees in South Dakota.

If I'dve known you weren't aware that Deadwood-Mickelson was the championship race, I certainly would have told you. A runner I know you know of, Michael Wardian, took second there.

Unfortunately, I couldn't run Wellspring this year, but I'm looking forward to giving er a go next year. It has quickly grown to be the biggest non-marathon event in the Hills (and maybe in the state). Look forward to seeing you there.