Medoc, for a first time race, well done! (about: 2008)|
J. E. from Maryland (10/5/08)
50+ previous marathons
| 1 Medoc Trail Marathon
The staff and volunteers for this race were top notch. I was the VERY LAST PERSON to complete the course and they were there waiting and cheering as though I came in first and won the event! My heartfelt thanks to all of you.
The Medoc Trail Marathon is a two-loop event that you complete three times each. It was clearly marked and had volunteers at many places also. Bright yellow plates with arrows and orange plastic streamers can be hard to miss, though some runners claim to have done so and looped incorrectly and finished. I might add: The first loop was the easier one and during my first time, I thought I'd like to come back next year. The area is so scenic and interesting.
This trail included steep, very steep stairs to go down, with CAUTION signs well posted and stairs to climb. The hillside, or mountain, during the second loop included a lengthy rock and pebble covered stretch going uphill and when the rocks stopped, the hill kept going. It was at this point, that I changed my mind about next year. My heart got a great workout! At the top, there is a long flat stretch and aid station before you wind back down the other side of the mountain and cross the bridge. Medoc was spotted a few times along the route. The river ran alongside for much of the race and there were narrow one person areas. The tree roots and stumps were quite plentiful. Only two took me down, though many others tried.
We had been advised to carry a water bottle as the stations were about 4 miles apart. They were well stocked with water, Gatorade, cookies, ice, pretzels, and gummies. A great big thanks goes out the guy that made that cup of coffee for me after about 10 miles and ran to catch up. (He didn't have to run very fast.) I was struggling and it was the boost I needed. Thanks much. Needed my caffeine.
This was a first-time race which included a 10-miler. I think there were more willing to do 10 miles than 26.2. Many people won't try a first-time race and undoubtedly, that is why I got the first place age-group award. I am slow, but I was there. I was the ONLY one!
An additional treat to this race is the camping. I checked out the park before I went to my hotel and was intrigued by what I saw. Campsites were well marked, and set up. You selected your own and the ranger came around and registered you! I had packed pillows and sleeping bag in case I decided to try sleeping in my car. After changing my mind a few times about this while at the hotel, I finally decided to do it! My space with electricity was $14! I was directly across from the restrooms which included hot showers! And I was a five-minute walk from the course instead of a half-hour drive! And since it's dark by 8 p.m., there was nothing to do but sleep.
I would highly recommend this race because of the support, the terrain, the camping; and the medal has to be one of the most unusual among your collection.
This race is run by runners who know and understand many of the nuances involved and will make any necessary adjustments to ensure that this is even better next year.