2011 Bolton Road Race

When your hometown hosts a race, you go. With more than 2,200 runners finishing today’s O’Hartford 5K in Hartford, Connecticut, you would think that was the place to be. But for us, it wasn’t. We chose to run our hometown classic, the Bolton Road Race. In its 33rd  year, this five-mile affair is on the roads that we run and ride all of the time. It would have been more fun to run on trails, which are finally clear of snow, today, but this race, which benefits the Bolton Booster Club; and brings out our neighbors, was just what the doctor ordered.

When the flu raged through our house during the last two weeks, it seemed like winter would never end. Today, I wasn’t in my finest form and Debbie was coming off of a tough Saturday workout, but we were game for a race. We pushed our kids up to the high school in our Chariot CX-2, which is getting heavier by the day, and got clutch babysitting from my parents, who walked with the kids on the 5K loop. Debbie and I ran the classic five-mile loop which includes the infamous Hebron Rd. and Brandy St. climbs. The race has a deceiving small 307 feet of elevation gain, but it mostly comes on these two steep hills in the first and fifth miles.

Just before the start, eventual race winner Brett Stoeffler commented, “This isn’t a P.R. course.” No it isn’t. With the two hills, especially the last one, slowing you to a jogging pace, you need to bank time in the middle three miles if you are going to run a fast time. The first mile is normally 20-30 seconds slower than your average and the last mile is normally 30-60 seconds slower than your average. I’ve done the official race once before and didn’t break 30 minutes, which I knew was out of the question today given my lack of form.

We got great weather conditions. It was a chilly 45 degrees Fahrenheit with no wind and brilliant sunshine. It was the life-giving sun that made the day. I opted to run in shorts and short sleeves, which was an OK choice and just felt great with spring still a week away. As I mentioned, Brett bested Adam Seften (first Bolton finisher) and me to the line. Debbie was the first women. The field was small, but it was fun to run with friends on the roads we are most familiar with. It was also good to finally get this season underway with lots of good events coming in April. The volunteers were great. Division winners each received a $10 iTunes gift card to go with their medal, which was a nice touch. The fire department was out in force and manned every corner of the figure-eight course with a serious fire apparatus. This race definitely deserves a bigger following, but the five-mile distance (there was a 5K alternative) and hills seem to scare folks away. The presence of the aforementioned St. Patrick’s Day inspired 5K in the city and the promise of free beer at the finish, draws the runners away. Oh well, their loss.

Race Results

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I crashed out of the Singlespeed Championship @renocxnats (on the dreaded off-camber) but not before having more fun. @artroti43 raced on the frosty course ❄️ at day break. 🚴🏽 We met a lot more @horsteng #crossspikes customers. I hung with little bunny hopper 🐰 Miles, the Junior 11-12 year old Silver Medalist.🥈I cheered for Nic, who represented @the_ccap in the Junior 15-16 age group. @sportstert and Iva came down from Tahoe to cheer LOUDLY for me. 🎺 I got my badly sprained ankle taped and iced. I had a beer. 🍺 I’m even looking forward to my red eye flight home ✈️ . Best of all, I’ll see @trailrunningmom and the kids on Sunday. I can’t explain the sensation, but despite the pain, I’m ready for next #Cyclocross season to begin... after some rest. #teamhorstsports #cxnats #horstengineering @parkavebikeshop #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross #crossiscoming You could say that at least for this week, I’m married to my #bicycle - - -

@renocxnats #cxnats @seven_cycles #sevencycles #teamhorstsports #horstengineering #crossspikes @horsteng #chapelofthebells #Cyclocross #lifedeathcyclocross Good day representing @horsteng at @renocxnats in the 45-49 age group. It’s a great course. The wind was blowing hard, but the sun finally came out. I’m happy with 37th place but should have made a move to get to 29th, which was 30 seconds ahead. That’s a long way when you are going flat out and cramping. 4,500 foot elevation was a factor. I’m disappointed that they cut one lap of my race when I wasn’t close to getting lapped by the leaders. You train this hard and come all this way; and you want to get the most racing for the $ and time invested. They only let 25 riders do the full six laps. The only positive to come out of that was that I watched fellow New Englander @adammyerson execute a perfect final sprint to win the Stars and Stripes again. Teammate @artroti43 had a good ride too. 
@seven_cycles #sevencycles #horstengineering #teamhorstsports @bicycleseastct #crossspikes #cxnats #renocxnats #Cyclocross #crossisboss @therichardsachs didn’t have the race he hoped for but it was still great to see him @renocxnats and “pit” for him. He said he officially started his second off season, but first of 2018. @artroti43 and I played soigneur/mechanic for 90 minutes, but minus the massage! atmo #renocxnats #richardsachs #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #hauteframebuilding #Cyclocross #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross I previously hadn’t published this image, but it recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2017 @appalachianmountainclub Photo Contest for the People Outdoors category. Check out my blog (link in profile) for the interesting story of his photo (shot with this iPhone 6s), a trip report from this amazing Maine adventure, and past contest history. I love this image of two of my favorite women. I’m barred from submitting images to the 2018 contest, but I’ll be back in 2019. #appalachianmountainclub #baxterstatepark #katahdin Congratulations to Master Park, the Park Family, and the entire team at Park’s U.S. #Taekwondo at the Grand Opening of the new facility in the former VFW building. Our kids love it! So much better than being next door to the pawn shop and liquor store.😊#tkd 🇺🇸🇰🇷 This morning, the @trinitycollege Main Quad was bathed in beautiful sunshine ☀️but it was frigid and the wind was blowing! ❄️ The chapel was packed with an overflow crowd to celebrate the (shortened) life of a lovely friend. She will be missed. #circleoflife 🌏 #Repost @horsteng
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