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Race Evaluation

DVOA Frontier Festival: Red X Day 1


1. +00:450-1 Because work has kept me busy and limited my workouts, my first of many false excuses is that I trained hard Thursday and Friday. I felt sluggish on Saturday but my mind was dull too. I was a little rushed getting to the meet and driving-up the same morning. I didn't get to read the course setter's notes. Now that I've got that out of the way, I still hoped for a nice run and planned to use trails on Peggy's and Peter's advice. I set off on the trail around the field. At the intersection on the other side, I looked for the indistinct path but interpreted the map and compass bearing wrong. I ended-up heading down the trail that later would take me toward #3. I realized my error quickly, turning around and finding the correct trail. Once in the green, I was surprised by the difficulty of the vegetation.
2. 1-2 Going back the way I came, I crossed the indistinct trail and found an incorrect control near a clearing. Checking it and passing it, I found #2 without much loss.
3. +15:002-3 Backtracking to the clearing thinking to get out of the green the quickest way, I still had trouble making it to the trail. Finally on the trail, I saw Burnie going the other way. I made good time on the bad footing and was not tempted to cut-off along the marsh before reaching the big field. After turning right along the field, I saw many ahead climbing a ridge. I was trying to count trails but wasn't sure that some openings were trails at all. I started exploring one, then backed-out as it appeared to close-in. The people ahead had disappeared. Exploring another trail more thoroughly, I again backed-out. Now not sure which one was right, I started exploring them all almost systematically--very bad orienteering. Even when relocating at the road bend, I didn't use pace count and continued to have trouble. Nearing the marsh, I stopped to tie my shoes and then headed north. I ended up at a pile of rocks with a West Point runner--perhaps this was the ruin. It was covered in thorns. I kept wanting to go in straight lines but the thorns wouldn't let me. I finally relocated again at the road bend along the field and went to it.
4. 3-4 Going straight on the road to cross the field, I didn't even attempt to cut the corner as I turned north. I did use some trails to take me to the next road where I turned left and saw David Onkst coming the other way. Reading the vegetation boundary and guessing that I had gone far enough I cut into the trees about the same time as David did, but from a different spot. We converged in the woods and I kept my eye on Dave. He went lower and I went west. I think he found it first.
5. +07:304-5 David was near by so I tried to get out and away quick. I went high as he went low. High had fewer thorns. David said my way was better so he fell in behind. I paused as I approched a clearing. At first I thought it was ahead and told David. After he passed, I had second thoughts and thought to find the lake first to make sure. I really read the map poorly here since the lake was northward. I got caught-up in bad thorns and gave-up on reaching the lake. Bailing-out, I eventually reached the road used to approach #4. Setting a bearing, I couldn't go straight when I hit the trees. I went around and found it shortly thereafter.
6. 5-6 Up to the road and around, I never saw the intermittant trail that would have been more direct.
7. 6-7 Leaving #6, I had a hard time seeing the path I had just used to come into these thorny woods. Down the hill then I paused, thinking to go down to the left first. Instead I turned right and crossed the woods later but before the first field ended--again crossing the woods was slow due to thorns and downed trees. Across the next field, I got hung-up in more impenetrable thorns at the creek and had to back-out. Going around, I passed very close to the large barn. At the creek crossing, I saw Marek(?) going the other way. I found #7 easily on the trail.
8. +01:157-8 I drank water then headed off reading on the trail as I went. I passed the correct trail at the end. Crawling under thorns, I clamored over deer beds and under more thorns to get back on the right trail.
9. 8-9 Confidence was not good and I didn't see the trails crossing the large thick green area anyway. Since I knew #9 was near #3, I chose to go far around. Marek(?) had gone this way earlier (though he turned-out to be running Blue and started from a different control). I also thought that by going around I'd lose less time since I didn't have to read the map to do it. I passed #7. I was more efficient crossing fields but not very fast running. I passed #6. Still not having stopped running, I approached the Y-intersection near the end of the field and misinterpreted what I saw. I turned left too early w/o checking the bearing. Reading a clearing, I turned left again, instead of right which would have lead me to the control--I thought I was on the other road. Picking a trail, thinking I'm headed straight to the control, I didn't find anything but kept going as the trail bent left. The trail took me straight to #3 which fortunately I recognized from the code--damn! Headed out the way I came, I crossed the road and read trails to go straight to #9 Another guy punched about when I got there.
10. 9-10 Wanting to play it safe, I went to the road and turned left. I planned to go along the stream but remembered the green woods here didn't let you do this well. I cut in. The other guy from #9 went more directly but we converged. After a little searching, I think I get there just before he did.
11. 10-11 Setting off to cross the creek and hit the trail, the other guy who was punching was blocking me from seeing the way that others had gone when leaving. I tried to crawl under more thorns but was turned-back. I ended-up following the other guy across the stream after he finished punching. I passed him at the trail. Using the trail to climb the hill, I went in around the west side to save climb/green woods, then spiked the control. In retrospect straight over the knoll would have been better because the light green woods weren't bad like elsewhere.
12. 11-12 On bearing, I fell into the correct reentrant and saw the control quickly. Blue West Point runners were punching too.
13. 12-13 I like this area much better than the first half of the course. Cautiously, I set a bearing but mostly rough compassed down the reentrant. I was pleased that I recognized the prominant spur and knew that the control, not visible from below, was where I anticipated.
14. +01:0013-14 Along the spur, then right, I pulled-up short. I saw the man from #9 and #10 go by-probably on Red Y. A woman looking confident drew me to the south side of the hill. We both adjusted but she gots there first.
15. +03:4514-15 Passing the woman from #14, I ran to the clearing and the triangle. I saw the man from #9 and #10 go into the woods headed north on the trail so I followed. Turning right on the trail used to go from #2 to #3, I read the clearings. I twisted my ankle but hopped it off. As I tried to cut north, I found the dark green to be impenetrable and had to back-track 150 meters before an opening appeared. I stuck to the trail and found the T-intersection. My first attack missed to the right slightly by 10 meters. After looping back, the woman and man I saw at #14 appeared ahead, on their attack. After a little following, I punched after them.
16. 15-16 The woman and man at #15 headed back to the trail and I gave chase. They both soon hopped out of the woods to reach the field just as I caught them. My course was different, so I kept on the trail. The trail soon lost me however. I saw Gail who was running Green. Though the trail dissappeared I kept running until I reached the right reentrant. At the bottom, I look around and saw it to the right.
17. 16-17 Staying in the reentrant mostly on a rough trail, I reached Daniel Boone Lake before cutting-up to the road. Kissy is ahead punching the GO control.
F. 17-F Cheering Kissy in as I pass her (she's running Green but ran a marathon the previous weekend), I have a good finish kick. This was still a rather dissapointing race.

Total Time Lost - 00:29:15

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