2011 Busa Bushwhack Trail Race

82-year old running legend, Richard Busa, always comes to our club’s races (Shenipsit Striders), so it is fitting that we finally got to his. The Busa Bushwhack Trail Race has been around for eight years, and it has been part of the New England Grand Tree Trail Running Series for nearly as long, but we had never done it. We have known Richard since 1999 when Debbie first burst onto the New England trail running scene. By then, he had already made a name for himself as a fantastic masters runner at distances from 5K to 100 miles. He has been a fixture in the New England trail running community for many years and has been an inspiration to many.

His club, the Greater Framingham Running Club, is the host for this 10 mile affair. The course is in their backyard at Callahan State Park. Today’s race was rescheduled from October 30th because of the freak snowstorm that devastated Connecticut and Massachusetts. There was no snow on the trails today. Instead, we were greeted with an unseasonably warm temperature of 60 degrees, and abundant sunshine. Neither Debbie or I had ever run on the Callahan trails, so it was a new and fun experience.

Last weekend’s Mt. Toby Trail Run was fast, but not nearly as fast as Busa. The trails were covered in leaves and there were a few spots of mud, but for the most part, they were not technical. There was some up and down, including the infamous Busa Hill, but you had to just lay it out there because this was a fast track. I only missed one turn, which is a testament to the good course markings and all of the excellent GFRC volunteers. Without that extra effort, I would have been lost because there was a lot of criss-crossing and doubling back.

Alas, it was a good day. We were pumped to get in our sixth Grand Tree race of the year. Both of us needed it to qualify for the season points. GFRCer, Wendy Cashen Akeson, was kind enough to connect us with club-mate Jill Conroy, who watched our kids while we hammered in Callahan. The finish line was at the Brophy School, which was neat. There was a playground, so it qualifies for family friendly. We walked from the school to the start, which was in a neighborhood. At the end of the cul-de-sac was a trailhead for the state park. 167 runners finished the 10 mile race and 81 finished the 5.3 mile short course.

Stephen Granger-Bevan blasted the 10-miler in 1:03:09, which is pretty good considering that this is all trail and the footing was tricky. Jim Johnson went faster last year, but for today, Stephen was top dog. I chatted with him after the race, and he was genuinely happy to get the win because he has been hampered by some nagging injuries. He beat out Mt. Toby and Stone Cat champ, Ross Krause, who has been absolutely flying. Ross finished in 1:04:38. Russell Johanson rounded out the top three in 1:06:30.

I ran a 1:09:16. Hot on my heels was the women’s winner, Kim Webster, in 1:09:23. Kim closed in on me with about 1.5 miles to go. I could hear her breathing and I knew that the runner stalking  me was a girl, but I never looked. I had faded a bit in the second half, but I wasn’t about to get caught near the finish by a boy or a girl! Her breathing was labored, so I kicked it up a notch when we hit the final 1/2 mile road section, which was enough to hold her off. The final push did get my heart rate up to 191, so I should at least thank Kim for that.

She had a great race. Her gap to second place finisher and last week’s Mt. Toby champ, Kelsey Allen, was significant. Kelsey still had a great time of 1:12:39. Kath Hardcastle was third in 1:14:24. Ashley Krause was fourth, Amy Lane was fifth, and Debbie was sixth in 1:20:14. This race was a little short and the trails were a little too tame for Debbie, but she still had a great time.

It was nice to hang out with Richard after the race. His race resume is amazing. I’m glad that the GFRC gang got this race in. Two weeks ago, it looked grim. Today, it was glorious. We got to run some new trails, see some old friends, and meet some new ones too. It’s sad that the Grand Tree series is in hibernation until next April. Bring on Northern Nipmuck!

Race Results

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@thecubscouts #pinewoodderby never gets old. Pack 157 Bolton, Connecticut #cubscouts So that little injury caused by my @renocxnats crash on Saturday afternoon wasn’t so little after all. It’s a broken leg (fibula). Prognosis is good, but it hurts like heck. My blog post report with blow by blow details is linked in my profile. #cxnats #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #crossisboss - - -

This #lifedeathcyclocross stuff is true!!!! 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 🌏

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