Paleozoic Trail Runs
6th Annual Spring-Season Paleozoic 50-Km and 25-Km
Our spring celebration of "going long" made use of the Palos trails of Willow Springs. We've charted this Paleo south racecourse a total of four times now... the others being Silurian Spring in 2016, Permian Fall in 2015, Devonian Fall in 2014. This was the eleventh running of our semiannual race, which has always offered the event distances of 50 kilometers and 25 kilometers.
Saturday March 24, race-day conditions: mean temperature of 37°F, low temperature of 33°F, high temperature of 41°F, ENE winds, with speeds that ranged at 18 mph, with maximum gust speeds of 28 mph, sunrise 6:49 am, sunset 7:07 pm. Historically, March 24th has averages: high temperature of 50°F, low temperature of 34°F.
Weather-wise this was a cold, overcast day... ideal for fast spring racing. The racecourse was in very good shape with just a few moist/wet spots, most of which were "skirtable" by nimble-footed trail runners. For simplicity and consistency I marked the entire course using orange spray painted arrows, and pink wire-flagging... in the week leading up to race day a chance of accumulating snow was forecast, which could have rendered the spray painted arrows useless.
Reporting early-morning at Pioneer Woods... volunteers, Kristen Edling, Edward Czoski, Brock Stuessi, Mary Leonard, and Jonathan Mireles arrived for aid station set up and to greet runners at the 7:30 am check-in / packet pick up. Vols, Tony Cesario and Julie Bane transferred gear and supplies from our race van to their vehicle for satellite/turnaround aid station staffed by Tony and Julie at Wolf Road Woods. Many Flatlanders' Ultrarunners, led by Traci "Racine" Lambert-Cwerenz were on hand throughout the day to patrol our racecourse.
Under direction of co-RD Michelle Thom, our 50-Km event was off-n-running at 8:30:35 am. 61 participants took to the trails for their two-lap tour. An hour later at 9:30:36 am, honorary starter and Paleo-veteran, Mary Leonard set 71 25-Km runners off on their adventure.
An unmanned aid station was set trail-side at approximately 3.6-miles outbound. Full-service fare, staffed by Tony and Julie (morning shift), and Brock and Regina Schurman (afternoon shift) awaited at Wolf Road Woods, Grove #2, which served as our turnaround aid station. Paleo-Dev 50-Km runners completed two full laps of our out-n-back racecourse, while Paleo-Dev 25-Km runners raced a one-lap tour.
An exciting 50-Km race developed as Jeff Friedman of Dubuque, IA set an aggressive pace, reporting at the halfway checkpoint in 1:42:51. In close pursuit came James Roche of Fruita, CO. James is a past Paleo 50-Km champion and holds the all-time Paleozoic 50-Km record of 3:35:27.6, which he set in spring 2016. At some point in the last 12 kilometers Jean-Bernard Flanagan of Libertyville caught both and finished first, with James in second ~2˝ mins back, and Jeff in third just 50 secs behind James. Elin Alexander of Chicago was top female with a time of 4:45 in her Paleozoic debut.
Meanwhile the 25-Km featured record-setting performances with Coree Woltering of Ottawa in first place, and a new all-time Paleozoic 25-Km record of 1:32:08. Coree won our spring 2017 50-Km with his south racecourse record of 3:37:28.8. James Harrington of Bolingbrook finished fourth oveall, racing to a new all-time masters Paleozoic 25-Km record of 1:45:05.6. Between Coree and James were two very fast teen-racers from Washington, IL, Reese Borlin in 1:37 and Chris Hurd in 1:43. Reese was our fall 2017 50-Km champion running 3:41 on the Paleo south racecourse, and remains our youngest ever champ at age 17. Yumi Spiller of Chicago was top female with a time of 2:10 in her Paleozoic debut.
At the finish, awaiting all runners... customized finisher-medals, vegetarian spring medley soup, and white chicken chili soup, along with a roofed-shelter and warming tent for relaxing and replenishing. Top overall and masters runners earned very special awards. Top-three age division runners collected special pint-glass awards. First-time ultramarathon finishers earned "My First Ultra" pint-glass awards. Five-time Paleozoic finishers collected special zipper-draw-string shoe bags!
Congratulations to our swift runners of Paleozoic Trail Runs - Devonian Spring!
- Paleo-Dev 50-Km...
Top Male Open: Jean-Bernard Flanagan, 51 of Libertyville - 3:38:38.8 * Past overall champion - Third fastest Paleozoic 50-Km time!
Top Female Open: Elin Alexander, 26 of Chicago - 4:45:13.6 * Ninth fastest female 50-Km in her Paleozoic debut!
Top Male Masters: Jeffrey Fleitz, 47 of Chicago - 4:38:15.1
Top Female Masters: Jung Kim, 40 of Oak Park - 5:27:51.8 * Eigth fastest masters female 50-Km in her Paleozoic debut!
- Paleo-Dev 25-Km...
Top Male Open: Coree Woltering, 28 of Ottawa - 1:32:08.0 * New Paleozoic 25-Km event record - Past 50-Km champion!
Top Female Open: Yumi Spiller, 33 of Chicago - 2:10:21.9
Top Male Masters: James Harrington, 42 of Bolingbrook - 1:45:05.6 * New Paleozoic masters 25-Km event record!
Top Female Masters: Sarah Kirk, 40 of Chicago - 2:20:32.0
Timing, webcasting, and finish-line scoring... all managed by us, through our RunRace website at RunRace
. Check out Results and our Webcast through the links...
Results: Results on RunRace
Webcast: Webcast with Checkpoint Splits
Let's give a rousing "shout out" to our race volunteers, many of which are accomplished runners, all of whom performed "beyond the call!"
- Pioneer Woods Aid Station: Captain, Mary Leonard, Kristen Edling, Edward Czoski, Brock Stuessi, Jonathan Mireles.
- Wolf Road Woods Aid Station: Tony Cesario and Julie Bane (morning shift), Brock Stuessi, Regina Schurman (afternoon shift).
- Keepers of finish-line paper trail: Mary Leonard, Kristen Edling, Jim Arnold.
- Supplies delivery, aid station shuttling: Brock Stuessi, Bill Thom.
- Warming tent set up / tear down: Ed Czoski, Brock Stuessi.
- Post-race soup overseer: Bill Thom.
- Course marshaling: Special thanks to Racine-Traci and members of Flatlander Ultrarunners who toured the racecourse supporting all runners.
- Course marking / Course cleanup: Bill & Michelle Thom.
Check out our gallery of photos below, captured mostly at our primary aid station, Pioneer Woods. These photos have been optimized for display on the internet... feel free to copy for your personal use -and/or- link this "Run Report" with your social networks.
Congratulations to all runners of Paleozoic Trail Runs... summoned by the primordial instinct to go-long, who toed-the-line and answered-the-call, in our spring version - Devonian Spring!
Links & Recaps as Generously Provided by Participants of
Paleozoic Trail Runs - Devonian Spring!
[no reports submitted to date
... please send your race contributions to the author]