“When you hit the pavement-sprint! There’s only 200 metres to the finish” These words jumped into my consciousness, coming back to me from the pre-race briefing 90 minutes earlier. I saw the pavement… and sprinted. Not very fast! There wasn’t much left in my legs after an all out 1 hour and 25 minute effort. I was coming to the finish line of the 5 Peaks Alice Lake 13 Km trail race last Saturday-16th April.
What a great race and great course. Loved it!
The setting was the beautiful lush Alice Lake Provincial Park near Squamish, BC.
5 Peaks puts on many very popular trail races throughout Canada. Each event has two options: a sports course of 5-8Km and an enduro course of 10-15Km. As well, there’s always a kids race or two. I’ve done a few 5 Peaks races in my time and have always loved their courses. 5 Peaks have tonnes of sponsors which means lots of draw prizes and give-aways. They award medals to the first 3 in each age category too-more later!
Last Saturday at Alice Lake the events were a 13Km, an 8.5Km, a 3Km kids race and a 1Km kids race.
Race director, Solana said she revamped the course this year. The course was awesome with lots of “flowy runnable lush switchbacks” and lots of -my favourite- fast downhill. The technical parts of the course are single track mountain bike trails. These trails have cool features like a human sized dog-house (you run through it) and a crazy wave bridge. The last downhill of the race is on one of the “premier descents in all Squamish”. Running technical downhills is my passion and the last downhill was the best part of the route for me. Here, I was in a group with 2 other racers and we flew by many others. What a great feeling! But ouch…after that last downhill you turn right onto a 1.5km slight incline all the way to the finish. A weary plod took over!
But I did manage to pick up my knees for that last 200m of pavement.
The post-race festivities were fun with food, random prizes, games, banter, first, second and third receiving medals on the podium and age-groupers receiving medals too.
I was rewarded with a second place finish in the age 50 to 59 age group. That meant I got to stand on the podium and receive a beautiful porcelain medal. Wow! Cool!
I’ve mentioned before that I love using shorter races (shorter than ultra distance!) as tempo training runs. So it was a good training day in my 100 mile journey. I’m still on course.