Exploring along Dead Run, the last stream crossing before reaching the Beltway.
November 6, 2009 • Washington, DC
60 starters, 41 finishers
Sunday, November 6, marked the third running of the New Potomac Heritage 50k. It was a beautiful 70 degree day and the leaves were at their peak. In fact the day was so beautiful, that we were surprised by many last minute volunteers. Once again, about 60 runners covered at least some distance on the course.
On course, Don Padfield took an early lead and maintained it for the entire run to set a new course record of 5:01. He was chased by Mike Schuster, who after taking several wrong turns, stuck close to Sophie Speidel for a good portion of the run. Sophie ran strong all day and set a new women’s course record. Some of the early finishers who stopped for mimosas at aid station 2 included Laura Dewald, Ed Cappucino, and John Dewalt. Joni Fontana, the third woman in, finished for the third year in a row.
The runner’s field was very geographically diverse this year. In addition to the all-important VHTRC regulars, Jim Sullivan joined us again from Florida. We had others join us from Florida, Wisconsin, the Seattle area, Southern California, and three from Texas. Frequent visitors Bill Losey and Bob Combs joined us from Ohio and from Pennsylvania we were joined by Diana Widdowson, Harry Smith, and John DeWalt.
A big thanks goes out to Amy and Steve Platt for handling aid station 1 for the third year in a row. Sierra and Chase Platt served as young aid station workers in training. Aid station 2 was taken over by John Hayward, Mike Bur, and Meggie Scogna. They were joined by Michelle Arnot and surprise volunteer Jeff Reed. This creative combination of volunteers offered a 5 minute time deduction for mimosa consumption.
After four miles along the Potomac Heritage trail, the runners reached the chain bridge aid station captained by Maria Bertacchi. She was assisted by Anne Andrews, Richard Patch, Amy and Steve Platt, Farouk Elkassed, and Sean Andrish. Up the river, Jaret Seiberg handled the Turkey run aid station for the third year in a row. Ann Noss, Bob Phillips, Rayna Matsuno, Keith Dunn, and Betty Miracle assisted.
Other volunteers who should be recognized include John DeWalt and Kirstin Walcott for their peanut butter sandwich preparation, Karen Krieg for her course marshaling, and Scott Scudamore for recording results. Mike and Nancy Schuster and Sean Andrish were also a great cleanup crew.
The course marking was accomplished with the team of John Hayward, his dog Dasher, Steve Burton, and myself. Things started to fall apart when John Hayward left us….Steve and I had a great conversation going, and I had found some snacks (a totally wrapped Mr. Goodbar!) on trail…. After about 10 minutes of crossing a boulder field along the Potomac River, Steve and I realized we hadn’t seen a blaze in long time. We retraced our footsteps and tried to eliminate any blue flour dropped, but we may have missed some. A few folks missed the same turn we missed and saw traces of blue flour that caused them to believe they were on course. Ultimately everyone found the finish!
Sorry if I missed anyone, but thanks to all of those who helped out. I hope all of the runners and volunteers will participate again next year!