I felt really good going into this race, was well rested, and slept good the night before. So naturally I went out a little too fast at the start. Dumb, dumb, dummy. When will I ever learn? I ran the first loop about four minutes faster than last year and the second loop about 12 minutes faster than last year, but at the Scott’s Gap turn around I was only a few minutes ahead of last year’s pace. From Scott’s Gap to the finish I was still able to run the flats and down hills, but didn’t have the steam to really push it like last year. Also on the return from Scott’s Gap I was having trouble running fast down hill because my toes were so sore. It’s too bad I blew it this year because I can’t ever expect to get better weather and trail conditions than we had this year. I have to give a huge thanks to all the volunteers who made this race possible. The ice storms from two weeks ago and the wind from last week knocked down so many trees there was a good chance the race would have to be cancelled. Fortunately many people worked their butts off to get the trail ready. I have never seen such devastation; there were trees down everywhere, but with a couple minor exceptions the trail was cleared and in great shape. For finishing we got a wood medal shaped like a heart and a Colorado blue spruce seedling. Not sure where I’m going to plant it, but it should make for a lasting reminder of a great day on the trails. That is if I don’t kill it.