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Speed Events Announcements, reports, results, photos, and discussions about all types of speed skating events.

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Old November 8th, 2012, 09:44 PM   #1
shesk8
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Default Silver Strand 1/2 Marathon, San Diego, CA Nov 11th.

Silver Strand 1/2 Marathon, San Diego, CA Nov 11th.

Hey, who's going to race in Cali this weekend?

Event Link: http://www.kozevents.com/Running_Eve...athon___5K.htm

There looks to be open online registration still, so act NOW!! If you're in Southern California, Arizona, Nevada, or the greater south west, this is a not too miss event. What better than skating at all out speed along the strand with the ocean slapping the beach sands in your view? Weather looks to be 60's and sunny on Sunday. Planning to skate Fiesta Island and the Back Bay trails in Newport areas.

We do this race every year, and love the weekend of skating in San Diego!
See you there!!!
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Old November 12th, 2012, 05:21 AM   #2
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Was anyone wearing a GPS? What was the distance?
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Old November 12th, 2012, 07:55 PM   #3
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Unfortunately I didn't make it to Silver Strand this year, so I can't tell you the exact distance, but I did check the race results -- CONGRATULATIONS!
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Old November 13th, 2012, 12:41 AM   #4
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Yes, congrats, Rob. Nicely done!
How was the weather and course conditions?
I always really enjoyed write-ups of these events if anyone has the time and inclination. The GoPro cams added a whole other level as well.
Hey, cool to see some familiar names from the east coast and even Canada in the mix. Good to see.
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Old November 13th, 2012, 05:26 AM   #5
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Thanks guys. The GoPro must have turned on in my carry-on luggage, because when I got to San Diego the battery was dead and I didn't have my charge cable.

The weather was pretty nice. It was probably in the low 50s when we started with a slight SW wind (headwind/crosswind). Unlike last year, the course was nice and dry. The road surface is pretty rough, but if you choose your line wisely (try to stay where the car tires roll and not the middle of the lane) it isn't too bad. I had on F0 matter G13s, which are about as rough as outdoor wheels come, but I didn't have a problem. The race is shorter than a half marathon (maybe 10 miles or so, which is why I was asking about the distance) so I knew the hardness wouldn't kill my feet.

Usually I try and wait out the race a little bit and see who is looking strong and who isn't, but I approached today a little different. Michael Ringer was there, and I knew based on Houston last week that I'd have a hard time beating him in a sprint finish, even though I know the course better than he does. Since it was a short race, I wanted to make it hard early. Plus, I didn't see many other skaters warming up hard, so I figured I'd be able to catch some of them off guard.

I launched my first attack about 2 minutes into the race and nobody came with me. I kept my foot on the gas, but I was pretty cautious about going out so hard that I couldn't hold the pace. The pack let me stay just far enough ahead that I was feeling pretty good about the gap, but not so far ahead that they wouldn't be able to catch me if they worked together. Jake Sawyer was leading the chase, and he's a very strong veteran skater, even though he hasn't skated much the past few seasons. Joey Dalton made a solo bridge up to me. I welcomed the help, but he was pretty blown from the sprint he had to make from the pack up to where I was, so he wasn't able to provide much assistance that that time. Then I saw Blair Atwell, Chris Rojo, and Alex Fedak (my teammate for those who don't know) coming up without Michael Ringer and Jake Sawyer.

This was definitely the breakaway that I wanted to make stick. They were all pretty tired when they caught on too, so I was still doing the majority of the pulling into the headwind. I picked up the pace and tried to shake them, and then Alex pulled through and baked them (get it....shake and bake). Anyway...I was behind Joey who was behind Alex. A little gap opened up in front of me, and then I hit it hard to close it and Blair and Chris were gapped. I told Alex and Joey we had a 3-man break, and they knew as well as I did that it was time to split the workload and get a good gap. Knowing that 2 out of the top 3 podium spots would go to my team is great motivation, even when the legs are feeling cooked.

Alex must have been working pretty hard, because he started getting gapped a time or two. I'd slow down the pace so he could catch on because I was pretty sure we had a big enough gap on the main field. I felt bad for Joey because he had to make a tough choice. If he kept going hard, he could drop Alex and have an almost guaranteed top 2, but he probably knew I wouldn't have done any pulling because it was in my best interest to wait for Alex. Or, he could let me wait for Alex, split the work 3 ways, and have a better shot at winning the sprint at the end. He chose to wait.

Joey Dalton is a good skater, and I knew he would be able to take the turns in the subdivision quickly and give me a good run for my money in the sprint, so I wanted to shake and bake him before we got to the subdivision. I attacked and he got right on me. Alex was gapped, so I waited for a second, and then Alex attacked. Joey hesitated and I was on the back of him. He sprinted up to Alex while I sat in his draft, and then I attacked and got away. I think this was around 8 miles into the race.

The last 2 or so miles has lots of turns, but smooth pavement. The lead vehicle pulled off as soon as we turned into the subdivision, so I had to navigate the course by myself. They do a good job putting up cones and signs to show you where to go, but I was pretty nervous that I'd miss something or take a wrong turn and lose the race.

Fortunately, I made it. It was pretty fun winning the race solo because the pressure it off for that final sprint so you can bask in the victory a little longer.

Joey ended up inching Alex out in the sprint, and then Joey's son Bubba won the field sprint for 4th. It was pretty awesome for Alex and I to take first and third, and equally awesome that father and son took 2nd and 4th.

After the race, Alex, Herb, and I skated back up to the start to where our rental car was parked. A few other skaters joined us. The road on the eastern side of the Silverstrand has a wide shoulder with smooth asphalt. Paired with the tailwind, we had a really fast skate back up to the starting line.
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Old November 14th, 2012, 02:45 AM   #6
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The winds were about 8mph SE, whereas the day prior were 30mph from the north... gosh, if only mother nature would get in sync on race days!

Rob, that was Eric (of SkateNow) leading out the first mile, he said he was cruising out at the start, and no one stepping up to take the lead, then, as he puts it "WHAM!!" Let's just say you schooled him!

[edit] Attendance (118) was less that past few years(200+), hoping to see that grow next year. There was controversy as to whether the race would happen this year, glad to see it did, but wondering if they kept some people away. This always is a great event, perfect weather, nice course. We do a bonus skate back to the cars to make it all fun and get in some more skating.

Length of the course is right around 10 miles - I have not done GPS or map my ride. They took out 2 to 2-1/2 miles from the base section - too much history of incidences coming off the base trail in past. From organizers standpoint, and I agree with them, that it's better to be safe than repeat injuries each year in the same place.

Glad to see everyone enjoying the event. We will be back again next yr. Here's a few pics we put up on FB.

and, results are here: http://www.geminitiming.com/wp-conte...overall_12.htm
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Old November 14th, 2012, 08:01 AM   #7
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Thanks for the write- up, Rob. Sounds like a race worth doing next year.
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