Below are the compiled times for the first Massanutten Training Academy run for the 2019 winter training season for the MMT 100 Miler. After dicey weather and an ominous and erratic forecast forced the postponement of the run on its traditional calendar position on the Saturday of the Martin Luther King, Jr., Holiday weekend, run organizer Larry Huffman rescheduled for the following Saturday, January 26. Conditions were very good for the training run that day. It was very cold at the start, but sunny and generally a pleasant winter’s day on a fairly dry trail.
32 runners lined up at dawn near the entrance to the Caroline Furnace Lutheran Camp at the south end of the Fort Valley to take on the run. 29 finished, as injuries took out three runners over the course of the run. The biggest challenges were icy conditions at water crossings on the initial stretch of road up to Moreland Gap, and then mud and water at some crossings in the latter stages of the run. All of the runners finished before dark, and there were no reports of runners getting off course, which is a huge testament to their preparation and their attention to the appropriate trail markings.
Listed are the running times for those who completed the entire distance on this day. The 32 mile training run route generally mirrors the first third of the MMT 100 race course, with some distance cut off at the start, and a slight detour at the end for logistical purposes. Time of day is shown for the two aid stations along the way, and for the check-in at the finish of the run. Elapsed time is shown in the final column.
Bear in mind: this is NOT a race. No one treated this as a race. These should not be considered “race results.” The times are provided for informational purposes only. This can help others who pull the route from the event site and run the course self-supported, so that those runners can approximate times. It can assist those considering this training run in future years to estimate their own run times. And it is helpful for volunteers to see the range of times that runners take to cover certain sections.
Big thanks to Larry Huffman for the fantastic job he did organizing this run. And this, in Larry’s first year in charge, having taken over the Training Academy #1 reins from Brian McNeill. Thanks also to the 2019 volunteer crew: Dave Woll, Brian McNeill, Brett Martin, Daniel Gracias, Tracy Cooley, Doug Hutchings, Guy Towler, Julie Gray, Kathy & Larry Tumblin, Jesse Fuller, and Chef Sarah Smith at the finish.