About

Tim Bergsten created this Ning Network.

Salida "Run Through Time" Race Report

I loved this race. 

Yesterday I completed the Salida "Run Through Time" half marathon with several members of the Attack Pack running group. A trail race in March in Salida has the ingredients for a potential disaster, but this year it was a blast.  Due to my recent injuries that caused me to drop out of the LA Marathon, I was hesitant to sign up for a race. ESPECIALLY since I had been training for flat and fast, not rolling trails with climbs. I had not run over 8 miles in nearly a month. A member of the Attack Pack, Jamie, had signed up for the sold out race but could no longer run and offered her bib up for grabs. So, instead of wallowing on the couch all weekend mourning the loss of my Boston dreams, I decided a fun trail race with friends would be therapeutic. 

A few of us more hardcore individuals camped out the night before in the nearly freezing temps. I was on the lucky shift that pulled up late and hopped into my sleeping bag as I spent the evening blowing off steam, drinking beer and getting a fair amount 

of stretching in while Molly and Katie rolled in and set the tent up. The gods of fire knew it was going to be a good race, because they flame sculpted a running man for us. 

Morning came quickly (but was interrupted around 3 am when I almost attacked Molly thinking she was an impostor trying to get into our tent). We threw down on some oatmeal and headed over to the start with little time to spare. 

The race kicked off and I was flying. I didn't know how I would feel so my goal was to just listen to my body. So when on my second mile, I looked down and was running a 7:30, I thought it might be a good race. I LOVE running trails far better than road and I had not been on trails in quite some time, so I think my running spirit erupted with delight and I just couldn't help myself. The race looped around a mostly single track trail system just on the other side of the river in Salida. With the snow-capped mountains in the back drop, every turn offered picturesque peaks that made your heart leap and want to break into songs from the Sound of Music (Yes, I might have actually done so but you have no proof). If I was a betting woman, I would have put money on me eating dirt at some point since the trail was pretty rocky and full of tire track and shoe ruts. Around mile five, a volunteer aggressively waving a cowbell (we need more cowbell!) informed me that I was 12th woman overall. I was literally shocked. And as I explained to my running comrades later, my fierce competitive gene kicked in. I WOULD be top ten. So I targeted every woman in front of me and slowly picked them off. Winding through trails, sprinting up hills, all my training over the past few months carried me through and I felt like I was soaring. My heart hasn't felt that light in a long time and it reconfirmed why I love to run. It was the confidence boost I needed and repaired my broken ego. 

The finish line was slightly uphill and the race was closer to 13.5 miles (but who's counting). It was also somewhat anti-climatic with a sleepy crowd lazing on the rocks by the river and no announcer loudly proclaiming my personal victory. Eager to see how I finished, I checked the results. I was racing under the pseudonym Jamie, not Alicia Pino. Jamie was in the 30-39 age group while I am actually in the 20-29 age group. And like fine wine, we women get better with age. I wasn't doing myself any favors competing in a much more difficult age group. I printed the results receipt and my heart lept. I finished 8th woman overall and 3rd in the 30-39 category and (if I had been registered as myself) I would have won my age group by nearly 5 minutes. I have never placed in my age group in a race before let alone win it. It took everything inside of me to not plop down by the river and have myself a good cry. Instead I went back to the finish line and waited for every one of my running framily to finish. They gave me support when I needed it and I would be there to cheer the loudest as they finished. All had a great race. Ironically, Wendy came in as 8th woman in the marathon. 

Needless to say it was a beautiful weekend spent with some of the best people around. I wouldn't have changed a thing. 

Views: 405

Comment

You need to be a member of Pikes Peak Sports to add comments!

Join Pikes Peak Sports

Comment by Robert Ronas on March 18, 2015 at 12:51pm

Alicia - and I'm not trying to single you out and say you're a bad person, etc.  Yours just served as a very public example of this type of issue.  And, you're correct about the liability issue as well.

Everyone appreciates running in Colorado, especially our awesome trails.  Everyone appreciates when an organization puts on a great race (our own PPRR is awesome at it) but, we still need to respect the rules of the races/organizations.

I appreciate that you came on here and, rather than trying to defend or justify everything, you actually took responsibility and took comments to heart.  Most would have a hard time doing so.

I hope you have many successful races in the future.

Comment by Alicia Pino on March 18, 2015 at 12:38pm

Robert - I understand and appreciate your perspective. I would also add to your list the liability issue. I did not sign a waiver which could have put the race at risk, something I had not considered until after the race. 

What I should have done and wish I had done upon placing was to tell the timing team so that they could award the proper individual. My intent was never malicious or purposefully conniving, but yes - I did take someone else's recognition. I was conflicted taking the bib as I've never bought another's bib before unsure about my feelings on whether or not it was ethical. This debate is certainly bringing up some very valid arguments and I know it continues to be a debate in the running community. 

The website for the race does not rule out bib transfers. We went through all the proper channels to try to complete a successful transfer. 

I truly didn't care about the hardware or the recognition (so yes, I should NOT have stepped up to receive it) nor did I need to place to feel good about the race. I was just so thrilled to be racing in a beautiful place with great friends and to finally feel comfortable running again. I appreciate what you are saying. I've learned my lesson and will be more law abiding in the future.

Comment by Robert Ronas on March 18, 2015 at 11:59am

Good try on the safety issue.  Most runners do NOT wear Road ID.  While most races may not have emergency contact information on them, at least they would know who the injured runner actually is.

There are a few key points that are being missed here.

1.  If the race has a policy of no bib transfers, then how hard is it to understand that you can't transfer bibs?  It doesn't matter if the race director COULD make a name change or how hard/easy it would be to do so.  If the POLICY is no transfers, that's it.  Don't like it?  Don't support that race.  Seems just last year at the Garden Ten Miler there was an issue with a runner using another's bib.  Sound familiar?

The point being, should individuals just ignore and not respect the rules of the race/race director?  If so, are the following examples okay?

- Race says no headphones.  Ah, screw the race director, I'll hide the headphones in my pocket until I'm out of sight and then wear them.  They can't tell me what I can't do during the race.

- PP Ascent says no cutting switchbacks.  Ah, screw the race director, I'll cut the switchbacks if I want to.  They can't tell me what I can't do during the race.

While the PPRR may allow bib transfers (good on them) in their races, others may choose not to.

2.  Yes, she actually did run as a bandit.  If she wasn't a bandit, she would be listed in the results of the race.  She is not listed.  A bandit isn't just someone who didn't pay.

3.  Alicia WAS trying to steal someone's award - and was successful at it.  From her race report:

"...informed me that I was 12th woman overall. I was literally shocked. And as I explained to my running comrades later, my fierce competitive gene kicked in. I WOULD be top ten. So I targeted every woman in front of me and slowly picked them off."

and

"Eager to see how I finished, I checked the results. I was racing under the pseudonym Jamie, not Alicia Pino. Jamie was in the 30-39 age group while I am actually in the 20-29 age group.  ...I finished 8th woman overall and 3rd in the 30-39 category..."

And further from the race report:

"I have never placed in my age group in a race before let alone win it. It took everything inside of me to not plop down by the river and have myself a good cry."

Well, Alicia STILL hasn't placed in her age group in a race.  Lindsay Buffum, who truly did get third in the 30-39 age category, did NOT get her recognition, reward, etc.  Perhaps Lindsay has also never finished in the top of her age group category and if she ever did she would sit down and have herself a good cry.  Well, she MAY have done that but, that was stolen from her by a bandit runner.

Everyone here is glossing over the fact and acting like there's no harm, no foul.

Again, if you don't agree with the rules of a race, by all means, don't support it.  But, you should always follow the rules of the race/race director - you don't ignore them just because you don't agree with them.

Comment by Jim Brodie on March 18, 2015 at 11:57am

Tim - I hope that you did not take my comment as a slight. I completely agree with you. I ran that race this year and had a blast. It was extremely well put together.

Comment by Tim Bergsten on March 18, 2015 at 11:51am

Jim, you wrote about the Super Half ...  "I am sure there were plenty of changes that Tim does not even know occurred because they were easily, seamlessly and quietly taken care of." ... That is indeed the characteristic of good race organization and customer service. I'll always push for that.

Comment by Josh Herman on March 18, 2015 at 11:38am

As someone that was admitted to the hospital during a race as a John Doe because I didn't realize or see I could put information on the back of the bib I get the argument for emergency contact information. But I wear a road id now, and don't have to worry about that. If Jamies information was on the back of the bib, Alicia could easily make a change to it to avoid any issue. 

However, it should be standard for a race to let you into the race using someone elses bib, but all information is disqualified if not changed. If they cannot change, let the person race, but their numbers not count towards awards or overall place. It would be like an authorized bandit runner. The original person paid the race fee to cover supplies, timing, what have you, so that spot should be able to be filled by someone. And like Tim said its about trail running and the community, not just a race looking to make a profit (aka Color Run). 

Comment by Jim Brodie on March 18, 2015 at 11:07am

Safety really is not an issue. Most runners wear Road ID and if they have a serious medical condition are wearing a Med Alert tag. Most races do not have emergency contact information printed on the bib.

I have volunteered as a timer and PPRR always seems willing to make changes if a runner changes distances, teams, etc. I think we have had to correct gender, age, etc. Sometimes it's funny because a runner will switch distances without notice and all of a sudden you have the 10k race won in 20 minutes. You look at the results, see the error and move the runner to the correct shorter distance race. No harm, no foul.

At these smaller local races, why not just change the runner info if asked? For most small races this is not a big deal. The Run Through Time only has 450 runners. So what if a few runners want to swap? It doesn't even need to be done pre race. For many races, the timers stand around for a couple of hours after setting up with absolutely nothing to do. If there are changes for a large race like +10,000 runners and you have a thousand race day entries and signup corrections to make, then, yeah, it's a pain and a big deal.

Timing is beyond complicated with the software, hardware, redundant systems. To the runners it seems easy. To those doing the work it is complicated, but fun and it's easy to make changes. By easy I mean it only takes a minute.

The running community is amazing and I find it odd that for a small race the timers wouldn't make the change. As runners, we are all supportive of each other and accommodating. It's not like the field was overcrowded or she ran as a bandit, it was within the race #'s and paid for. I, along with dozens of others, have stood out in the freezing cold for 5-6 hours so the runners could enjoy their race/run and we all work to make sure the runners have a great time, because that's really what matters.

I don't want to speak for Tim, but PPRR does the timing for the Super Half and I am sure there were plenty of changes that Tim does not even know occurred because they were easily, seamlessly and quietly taken care of.

Alicia was not trying to steal anyone's award and I believe that she did try pre-race to make the change.

Comment by Katie Benzel on March 17, 2015 at 2:53pm

Right on, Tim. I believe Jamie contacted the race director about this issue and he said he couldn't change the names on the bibs. We were also not carded at packet pickup.

Comment by Tim Bergsten on March 17, 2015 at 2:17pm

To me, runners are customers (and my friends) so I'm always interested in what they do and why they do it. If somebody has a race entry for sale (for the same or less amount than what they originally paid) I can see that deal happening. But I would always tell the race director and I think any race director should be able to make a quick and painless change. It's trail running. A cool and respectful attitude by everybody - organizers and runners - is part of the gig. We should always strive for that.

Comment by Tim Bergsten on March 17, 2015 at 1:52pm

Katie B! Got it.

© 2019   Created by Tim Bergsten.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service