Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Des Cowie finishes The JFK 50 Mile!

A belated BIG congratulations to Desiree Cowie, who finished the JFK 50 Mile Ultramarathon in 9.49.36.

The JFK 50 Mile is the oldest ultra marathon still being conducted. The JFK 50 Mile is the only original JFK Mile Challenge that is still being held. The 2012 race will be the 50th anniversary of the race.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

NEOTC Shirts are in!

Finally NEOTC has branded gear to offer to the Membership.
Limited numbers of short sleeve tech shirts are available.
For the Ladies there are small, medium, and large available.
For the Men there are same as above, with XL as well.
These shirts are available on a first come basis.
The T-Shirt Comittee was able to negotiate a very fair deal, and the shirts are available for only $11.
Slim has the shirts and will bring them to all events and group runs that he participates in.
Lined up on his schedule at the moment is the Bigfoot 50K on December 4th, and URINEO on December 17th, and then the Recover from the Holidays FA over in Pittsburgh on January 7th.
Contact him if you are interested in making arrangements to get a shirt.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving. ~W.T. Purkiser

Monday, November 21, 2011

Slim Pickins' 2011 Results

Global Warming hit SP2011 hard this year.

Many were running in t-shirts and shorts.

We were worried when we saw quite a few hunters in the morning that this might have been the last SP on the Laurel Trail, but as the day wore on they all disappeared and it was just the NEOTC crowd and a handful of hikers left in the afternoon.

With the perfect weather conditions, Lloyd Thomas out at mile marker six with water and moral support, and the promise of a sweep by Kimba and Slim, there was no reason not to finish the Gate28X2 distance this year.

We listed everyone below who participated this year, if you don't like the comments, complain to Management.

Here are the results from the day's activities.

Cam Baker - 7:35:56 New OP50K FKT
Rich Vrboncic - 9:13 Despite perfect conditions, this was Rich's slowest time ever for this course
Chris D - 9:25 Web footed aquatics expert aces NEOTC debute
King Lefelhocz - 10:38 "Fairly Normal" event for the King
Kimba Love*Ottobre - 9:55 Earns * for first Female ever to finish OP50K
Jim Harris - 9:55 Kept looking for excuses to get more trail time
Jeff Musick - 11:12 DQ for leaving equipment on course
Brian Musick - 11:12 DQ for leaving equipment on course

Now on to the DNFs for the day.
Eric Deutsch - 22 miles Couldn't get finish despite bringing friend to hold his hand
Bill Thompson - 22 miles Followed Deutsch to DNF
Jamie Musick - 22 miles Couldn't chick the Musick Boyzzz
Chrsi Kalie - 22 miles Only Ultra Runner who never heard of Dean Karnazes
Bruce McMoose - 16+ Couldn't get what he wanted, but got what he needed
Wild Bill - 16 miles That's all he had
Tara S - 16 miles Pep talk by Slim bounced off her and stuck to Slim
Eric Harris - 16 miles Decided couch time was better than trail time
Allison Holko - 14 miles Should have stayed on trail instead of watching her team lose to Penn State
Rick Freeman - DNS Weather not epic enough to bother to show up

Special Kudos to LT for being an enabler for the day.

He hiked out to mile marker 6 with 200 ounces of water and spent the entire day lounging in the woods.
His effort for the day netted over 16 miles.
But his support for the day let Event Management rest easier knowing he was out there supporting the runners and for that we owe him our gratitude.

Plans are already under way for SP2012.
For those who participated, please feel free to offer suggestions for improvement.
For those who didn't make it to toe the line, your loss.

Changes to the qualification requirement for participation to Slim Pickins' will be different for next year.
Look to the SP web page for more details to be posted soon.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Slim Pickins 2011

Least epic weather ever led to 18 starters for the 6th Annual Slim Pickins.
The stated goal was the Ohiopyle 50K, also known as the "Gate to Eight x 2". (GATE28X2)
8 runners finished the OP 50K, more details to follow on that and more Slim Pickins chat.

Cam Baker, Kimba, and Baby Sasquatch Eric Harris.  Cam is coming down Big Hill at Mile 6, and Kimba and Eric are climbing it.
Allison about mile 7

Chris, her first time on the Laurel Highlands Trail

Jeff Musick, Kimba, Eric at the overlook around mile 7.5

Bruce McMoose Murray, Jeff, Kimba, Tara, and Wild Bill around mile 8

Jeff and Wild Bill at the turnaround.  You think they would be more happy.

The King-Paul Lefelhocz-and Slim

The Professor-Rich Vriboncic, and Slim, on the Big Hill (Mile 6)

The Musick Brothers-Brian and Jeff, on their way to Mile 8 for the second time

Rich Vriboncic

Pebble at the Overlook

Thursday, November 17, 2011

It's Slim Pickins Time

Once upon a time, not so long ago, there were not that many ultra running events.
One of the oldest running events is the JFK 50 Mile Race.
The JFK 50 Mile was first held in the spring of 1963. It was one of numerous such 50 mile events held around the country as part of President John F. Kennedy's push to bring the country back to physical fitness.
When Kennedy was assassinated in November of 1963, most of these events were never held again. The JFK 50 Mile in Washington County, MD is the only original JFK 50 Mile Challenge event. The race is always held the weekend before Thanksgiving.

While many, many, many runners have run the JFK for years and years, others were not that enthralled at the course/race. But, for years and years, if you didn't run the JFK, there was no other choices.

Hence, "Slim Pickings" for the weekend before Thanksgiving.

But that was before NEO TC. This weekend became Slim Pickins, where runners assembled over a loosely orgainized plan to run miles somewhere on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail.

The first year was 2006.
First year of SP was a target of a FA 100.

Following were present.

Bob Combs
Jim Harris
Mike Dobies (did not run as he was sick)
John Dewalt
Brad Compton from Indiana (who hit a deer on his way home and caused considerable damage to his vehicle)
We started at Seven Springs and went to mile marker 1, and then turned around to head back to Seven Springs for the first 50.

We all quit at that point except for John Dewalt, who was pissed that we all quit.
(Johnnie D quit too.)

One of the "Snow Years" on the Laurel Highlands. 2007:

This was an epic, backwards run on the Laurel Highlands Trail, starting at mile 71 and running to Ohiopyle.

Four completed the entire LHHT: Roy Heger, Tanya Cady, Jim Harris, and Brian Musick.

2008 was another snow year:

2008 was the double marathon from Ohiopyle to Seven Springs and back, which no one completed.

Global warming occurred in the late 00's, leaving us with much less epic weather for the 2009 Slim Pickings.

2009 was the 100K from Route 31 down to Ohiopyle and back. Several made the round trip: Jim Harris, Bob Combs, Cam Baker, Mike Dobies, and Brian Musick. Cam, Mike, and Brian also added some extra miles, proving you can get lost on the LHHT.

The LHHT bridge was removed in 2009, prompting a change in our Slim Pickings plan for 2010. We elected to run on the north side of the LHHT for 2010.

We had the best staging area for the 2010 Slim Pickins. This year, cabins were rented in Linn Run State Park, just a few miles from Donegal, PA. This is on the north side of the PA Turnpike.


The Pennyslvania Game Commission neglected to consult with NEO TC before they changed their hunting dates for 2010.  We found ourselves in the woods on opening day of Bear Season in Pennyslvania in 2010:

All turned out well, no casualties were noted.

This year's Slim Pickings is being staged out of Ohiopyle.  This is the epic Ohiopyle 50K.  
The double out and back. 7400 feet of elevation gain.  Sounds easy on paper, less so on those hills at mile 5 and 3.

Slim Pickings The Western Version

Our brothers out west are also running Slim Pickings.  Their version is called the Vertical Monster Fat Ass, and Shubi is calculating 10175 elevation gain.

So it appears to be an awesome weekend of running with friends!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bills' BadAss

NEO TC member Wild Bill Wagoner is half of the Bill Team that has organized and directed the Bills BAFA for the last two years. The other Bill is Chef Bill Bailey.

Once again, the Bills had a 'soldout' BA, with many local runners achieving their BadAss status on November 12.

NEO TC runners achieving BA status were:

Dave Peterman 5.57
Dan Bellinger 6.23
Kurt Osadchuck 6.27
Roy Heger 6.36
Tara Schweitzer 6.49
Brian Musick 7.11
Mark Anson 7.21
Chris Kalie 7.47

Thank you to the Bills for another quality running event in the woods!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Lottery Season

It's almost that most wonderful time of the year..lottery season, for upcoming ultra races.

The Western States Endurance Run Lottery is open until November 26. Make sure you have run one of the qualifiers on the List. The WS$R lottery will be drawn Saturday, December 10. The WS$R is June 23, 2012.

The Hardrock 100 is accepting applications to the lottery until November 30. The Hardrock lottery is December 4. Hardrock also requires a qualifier, and their standards are more strict than the WS$R. The Hardrock 100 will be held on July 13.

The east coast race, the Massanutten Mountain Trail 100 Run, is held May 12.
The lottery for MMT opens December 1st and closes December 7. Numbers for the lottery will be determined by the last numbers of the Dow Jones closure on December 8. Full details here.

Good luck!!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Weekend Racing Recap

There are still racing going on despite the shorter days of November.

Nick  did not waste any time after his splashdown back in the States by participating in the "Stomp the Grapes" 1/2 Marathon with his wife, Marjie.  They finished in 2.39.

A few NEO TC members went south, to Burr Oak State Park, for what may be the last Bob Cat Marathon.  The Burr Oak State Park Lodge will be closing down due to financial difficulties.  This trail marathon runs more like an ultra.

 Ron Ross finished the race in 4.55.

 Brandon Russell was not far behind in 4.59.

Courtney Russell must have let Brandon get ahead of her.  She finished in 5.03

And what did the King do, one weekend after his Double Marathon at Run With Scissors?

Run another 100 mile race, of course!

Paul Lefelhocz finished the Pinhoti 100 Trail Run in 28.50!   Congratulations Paul!  Rumor is that Paul now has (unofficially) 1085 Raced Miles for 2011.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Welcome Home Nick Billock!!

Welcome home Nick !!!

Thank you for your service.

Nick and Marjorie at Mill Creek Park

We look forward to sharing trail time with you soon.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Run With Scissors Double Marathon Race Report

By Todd Hanks

   I spent Saturday afternoon watching Cross Country Regionals in Boardman and wondered how they were running in that muck. Knew We’d be running in some mud at Run With Scissors the next day but had no idea what we were in for.

        I had one goal for RWS. Finish.

Picked up Jonathan “Scooby” Bolha in the wee hours of Sunday morning and headed to CVNP. He is a sub-3 hour marathoner who I somehow inspired to do RWS. This would be his first ultra and first trail race. 
Roy gave his pre-race spiel about course markings, staying off the road and dealing with horses and it was time to go. Clear and cold, about freezing, morning. Perfect race conditions. Started right at 5 and shot off into the night. Trip to Pine Hollow was pretty uneventful with some muddy spots but not too bad.
After Pine Hollow was a different story. Running beside the parking lots started the fun. As you got closer to the access between fields you would slide down the small inclines and then force through ankle deep slop. Maybe 4 spots like that until the Wetmore Trail. From there to Covered Bridge intermittent battles with shoe sucking tar pits. The fields before the farm were particularly bad. Many times my shoe started pulling off and filled with gruel. Bathroom after aid station was either closed or someone was reading a novel. Had to opt for some high weeds to take care of business. Plenty of leaves to use as TP. 
Perkins Loop was in good shape other than the last mile which got soupy. Guys book was called “Va-Voom” which was a nice attention grabber. Is it longer going from Covered Bridge to Pine Hollow? Damn that section takes forever. Wasn’t planning a shoe change, what’s the point, at turn around but socks or insert started balling up. Made Ledges Shelter in a little over 5 hours and changed shoes. Old ones felt like they weighed 10 lbs each. No thoughts at all of stopping and hit the second loop.

       Second loop started great. Hit Pine Hollow in just over an hour with almost dry feet and feeling good. Great run until mile 35-36 when left knee pain began on a steep decline. Ran/hobbled/walked until I saw someone on the bridge before the farm. Scooby was sitting on the guard rail. Said his feet hurt and was dropping. Got him to the Covered Bridge aid station and was on my merry way.

Reduced to a slow gimp and walking most of the way from here. Fell in a mud hole at some point, covered my water bottle and every time I took a drink it smelled like swamp. Solaced myself in the fact it was a beautiful day to be on the trails. Ran, some semblance of running, from the Overlook to the shelter and finished in 11:25. Woke Scooby up from a nap, had some of Bill’s fine grub, grabbed some candy for the road and we were off.  By the time I got home, I was pumped that I finished and ready to go a bit longer.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Run With Scissors Marathon and Double Marathon

NEO TC Members Shannon Fisher and Roy Heger are the Co-Directors of  Run With Scissors Marathon and Double Marathon, held October 30, 2011 in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

There were many NEO TC members who turned out to share a nice day in the parks. The trail conditions were less than stellar. The wettest fall in Cleveland history caught up to the runners who experienced mud, mud, and more mud.

Dave Peterman came in second in the Double Marathon, skating his way through the mud in 9.25.
Other NEO TC runners who completed the Double Marathon were:

Todd Hanks:11.26 This was Todd's first distance past a 50K. Congratulations Todd. Now you need to run a 50 mile course in less mud and see really how fast you could run it!

Ron Ross 12.13
Shannon Fisher 13.11
Paul Lefelhocz 13.41

Marathon Finishers at RWS were:

Courtney Russell 5.17
Brandon Russell 5.17
Christine Tokarz 5.17
Roy Heger 5.34
Bill Wagner 5.36
Tara Schweitzer 5.43
TJ Hawk* 6.17
Kim Love-Ottobre* 6.42
Mike Halkovich* 7.00
Cyrus Taylor* 7.38

* were runners that started the Double, then decided they had enough of the mud and stopped after one marathon. Roy's race allowed credit for dropping down to the marathon distance.

Course was very well marked and great volunteers at the Aid Stations.  Other than too much mud, a great day in the CVNP!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Nu-Race Trail Run Report

Nu-Race Trail Run Race Report

By Allison Holko

Nu-Race Trail Run was held at Camp Nu-Hop on Saturday, October 29. Camp Nu-Hop is a summer camp for children with learning disabilities, attention deficit disorders, and behavioral disorders; a portion of the proceeds from this trail run benefit the camp.

This event had multiple distances for runners to choose from: 3.5 miles, 8 miles, 13.5 miles or 31 miles. I had been planning to do a training run at Mohican this same day, so it made sense to sign up for 13.5 miles as a training run.

The race started at 8am, and it was somewhat sunny and the temperature was just above freezing. I headed out with Rob Powell and a friend of his. The 13.5 mile course was out and back – for those familiar with Mohican, the course headed south along the western side of Pleasant Hill Lake, which had many hills; past Little Lyons Falls on more narrow and technical trail to the covered bridge; continuing south and uphill on the Hog Hollow trail, to the Fire Tower; then looping back in a northern direction on the mountain bike trail, full of hills and sharper turns to the covered bridge; then headed north again, past Little Lyons Falls, the lake and back to Camp Nu-Hop.

There were two aid stations on the course; at the covered bridge (which I ran past twice) and at the fire tower, both of which had water, Gatorade, bananas and quarter sections of peanut butter sandwiches. There were some muddy sections (particularly near the lake and on the mountain bike trail); wet leaves made some sections of the trail, especially downhill sections slippery; however, overall the conditions were good.
The course had plenty of hills which was the reason I had wanted to do a training run there on Saturday.

It had warmed up somewhat when I finished, and the camp had chili, beer, brownies, pastries, and fruit for every participant. The nice part about having this event start and finish at the camp was that afterwards, the runners could relax inside the heated lodge; it was good to catch up with Becky Connar, Rob, and also meet several new people.

It was a good training run for me, benefiting a good cause.