Hey Flrunners. Wow, what a weekend! The Flrunners.com Invitational was just as fantastically glorious as always. I will definitely miss the blazing fast Chain of Lakes course that has been there for me when I most needed a PR. In the week leading up to the race every soul on the Ft. Myers team was jittery with excitement. In preparation for the greatly anticipated “Race of Champions”, we started the week off with a tough workout involving mile repeats. From there we drank our chocolate milk, tied our shoelaces extra tight, got lots of rest, and buckled down in preparation for any curve ball Coach Palmer might throw at us. We stayed easy on Tuesday, but on Wednesday we did a tough run focused on speed work, followed by a chilly dip in the ice buckets. Thursday morning came early and we trudged our way up “the bridge” for a hill workout. After all this it took every effort for most of the guys just to stay awake in school, but as Coach Palmer warned us early in the season, “Up until mid-October your legs belong to me.”
On Friday morning, we departed for paradise, Flrunners. Our JV boys and girls ran the first day and had fair success. After the awards ceremony for our JV, the team packed up and we headed to the hotel (Ramada). Denny’s spaghetti was catered for dinner (The Denny’s restaurant was actually a part of the hotel building), and we all got to bed early.
The Following morning started off with a bang. We arrived at Chain of Lakes early to set up and get everything organized. Then it seemed like suddenly I was on a warm-up and began realizing that my own teammate Emily Edwards was winning the girls ROC! This pumped all the guys up even more. We got to the line, cleared our minds, and waited quietly for the gun that set us off on our 3.1-mile expedition over feral territory. We all got out quick to ensure good position. I went through the first mile in 4:48 and kept moving my way up. By the two-mile mark, I was in the “chase” pack and began moving up to work with my teammate Tyler Bennett. With about 1200 meters to go, I got right on Tyler’s shoulder and said “lets go get ‘em”. With that we took turns surging and then catching up to the other. When we got up to the hair-pin turn that set us on the final straightaway we both knew that it would become a free-for-all. We took the turn hard and just fought as hard as we could to catch anyone ahead of us. We ended up finishing 5th and 6th with Tyler about a second ahead of me. I ran a new PR of 15:34. We had several PR’s on the team and our fantastic finish landed us with a second place trophy.
Next week we will be going to the Pre-State meet in Tallahassee. Were hoping for the best and cant wait to race on this year’s State finals course. Until next time, this has been Ace Brown of Fort Myers High School. Over and Out!