Chester Four on the Fourth

There is no better way to celebrate Independence Day than by running in the Chester (CT) Four on the Fourth Road Race. I ran it for the sixth time today, and it was a blast, just like in the past. More than 800 runners line up in the quaint town on the Connecticut River. There are few town centers in Connecticut, like Chester’s. It is a special place and the town comes out in force to support the race, held each of the past 29 years on July 4th. A special touch is the group of veterans that honor our freedom by running in formation every year. One of them always sang the Star Spangled Banner at the start, but he passed away since last year. His buddies led the National Anthem in his memory. It was a stirring moment and got some local TV coverage.

The start of the Chester 4 on the 4th.

After thrashing my legs on the bike yesterday, I was a little concerned about how I  might run today, but I decided that doing well in the Ironman division at the Josh Billings Runaground Triathlon (bike/kayak/run) in September is my next big focus. I’m running the Jay Mountain Marathon (50km on trail) later this month, but that is just for kicks. The Josh is the next big objective, so the more training that I get, which means back to back rides/runs, the better.

Every year, this bluegrass band plays. Part of the village charm.

Amazingly, I felt decent today. Deb ran some trails in the morning, so she and Shep watched me race. We can thank her for the great photos. They help tell the story. This race course is known for the sharp ups and downs and for the heat. The temperature wasn’t as hot as past years, but the hills were still there.

Scott running down the final hill.

I ran my second fastest time and finished 20th, which is respectable. I achieved my main goal of getting in another great workout. After the race, we spent the rest of the holiday relaxing. We should be back in Chester on the 4th next year. Back to work tomorrow.

 The unique scoring system is old school.

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