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Jonathon's Racing Attacks and Adventure Packs!

Amazing racing and training adventures on roads and mountainous/hilly TRAILS, freewaybikehike and triathlons. Dreams of a SIX FOOT 45km finish,(DONE 2011,2013,2014,2015!),then ULTRA-TRAIL AUSTRALIA (50km DONE 2016! 100km DONE 2018!!!), memorable Melbourne Marathon and Gold Coast racing. Over a decade dreaming of a SUB 3HR MARATHON, sub 18min 5k, sub 38min 10k, sub 90min Half marathon etc...(shattered? or still realistic?)

My Photo
Location: Perth, Western Australia, Australia

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42.2km SB; 2004; 3.55 2005; 4.02 2006; 4.18, 2007; 4.10 2008; 3.55
2009; 4.11 2010; 4.05 2011; 4.02 2012;3.49 2013; 4.12 ... 2014; ; 4.08 ...2015; 4.00
2016; 4.11 2018; 4.15 2019; 4.25
More ongoing GOALS;
***PB's pursuit; 5k 21.49, 10k 41.01 21.1k 1.41, ...42.2k 3.49

MM and the G!...

In recent years I have been enjoying races like;
December; 6-INCH(46km offroad)2005;--6 hrs 25 min...
2006; 7hrs 04 min 2008; 7hrs 00min...2009; 6hrs 16min
...2010:--5hrs 49min..2011:---5hrs 30min..2013---7 hrs 24min... 2014--- 7 hrs 06min 2015--6hours 43min ...2016---6hours 41min... 2017--7hrs 3min?... 2018-7hrs
October; Melbourne Marathon 2007; 4hr 10 . 2008 DNF at 23km..
2009 4hrs 11. 2010 4hrs 05min...2011;4hrs 02min...photos
2012; 3hrs 49min 52secs PB!... ..2013; 4.12 2014; 4.08 2015; 4.05... 2016; 4.53
Rottnest Marathon 2004; 4hr 32min ... 2013; 4hr 16min... 2019; 4hr 41min 59secs
August; City to Surf most years since 1997 see HERE for details,photos.
PERTH C2S PB's; 4K;17min 25 (2002) 12K;52min 52 (1997)
21.1K;1.54.20 (2007) 42.2K; 4.00.20 (2015) (2010 video..45secs into it)
Perth City to Surf Marathon finisher 2009,2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2019.
GOLD COAST; 2012 HALF; 1.44 2013 HALF; 1.47 2014 HALF 1.49
2015 4.11 ..., 2016 4.11..., 2019 4.25
PERTH Marathon(42.2km)
2004; 3hrs55min
2005;--4 hrs 02 min. 2006; 4hrs 18min 2007;4hrs 33
2008; 3hrs 55 2009; 4hrs 41min 2010; 4hrs 30min
2011; 4hrs 12min 2012; 4hrs 6min 2013; 4hrs 19min 2014 4hrs 48min 2018 4hrs 15min
2016 50km 9 hours 50min 956th
2017 100km DNF CP4 57km
2018 100km 24hrs 33min 15 913th
2019 100km DNF CP3 46km
April;TWO DECADES of Bridges racing; 1997; 43min 43 1998; 41min 01
1999; 47min 29 2000; 46min 47 2001; (5km) 30min 01 2002; (5km) 22min 48
2003; 42min 40 2004; 48min 50 2005; 44min 40 2006; 48min 07 2007; 49min 16
2008; 50min 42 2009; 49min 54 2010; 48min 39 2011; 52min 55 2012; 47min 02 2013; 54min 45 2014; 48min 47 2015; 49min 53 2016 52min 20
March;6 Foot Track 45km;
2011; 6.53 2013; 6.54 2014; 6.47
2015; 6.14!!! 2016 DNF

As of August 2019; 34 road marathons finished (Perth x12, Melbourne x9,Perth City to Surf x7 Gold Coast x3 Rottnest x3)
Have also finished 20+ ultra races; 6 inch 47km ultra finished 12 times, six foot 45km ultra 4 times, Ultra Trail Australia ultras 2 times, Truth 50km ultra once within cutoff (and once outside cutoff), Lark Hill 50km ultra, 6hour track race.
Also completed the Bloated Goat 31km (1500m Vertical gain) 2 times which is similiar effort to a 46km ultra.
DNFs in UTA100km, WTF50miler, WAMC40miler race, Truth 50km, Six foot and 6 inch.
The first 3 DNFs were after covering more than 42km, and with Truth one was a 25km DNF and the first one I finished the full 50km but was 19minutes outside cutoff battling an ankle injury for 36km.
In road marathons 2 DNFs one at 23km in the 2008 Melbourne Marathon due to severe ankle injury in the first 1km, and PC2S @ 30km.

Most races since October 2009; >
01/09/2019 Rotto Biddi 3hrs.09.44
25/08/2019 City 2 Surf Marathon 4hrs 48min
17/08/2019 TW Parkrun 5km 24.29 (5th)
3/08/2019 Truth 50km DNF (at 25km in 4hrs 26min)
28/07/2019 RunMelbourne Halfmarathon 2hr 03min
21/07/2019 Champion Lakes R2R Halfmarathon 1hr 55min (32nd)
7/07/2019 Gold Coast Marathon 4hrs 25min
16/06/2019 Rottnest Marathon 4hrs 42min
18/05/2019 Ultra Trail Australia 100km DNF at 46km (CP3) 8hrs 58min
17/03/2019 Fat Lamb 20km 3hr 29min 49th of 70
02/03/2019 Lark Hill 25km 3hr 54 (Night race forgot headlamp)
24/02/2019 Swissmurdie 2hr 35
09/02/2019 Busselton Half marathon 2.13 (Late start actually 2.05)
20/01/2019 Chi Gong 1hr 58 134th of 158 finishers
16/12/2018 6 inch 47km 7hrs (12th finish)
21/10/2018 Rottnest Half 2hr 03 min
16/09/2018 Fremantle Half 1hr 58min
04/07/2018 Truth 25km 3hrs 11min 55 (PTS)
24/06/2018 Eagle 22km 2hrxx(59min officially, but 43min on my watch as started late)
17/06/2018 Perth Marathon 4hrs 15min
19/05/2018 Ultra-Trail Australia 100km 24hrs 33min 15secs 913th of 964 finishers
218 withdrawals
03/03/2018 Lark Hill 50km
17/12/2017 6 inch 48km 7hrs
06/08/2017 Truth 50km 8hrs 22min 59
16/07/2017 Jolly Jumbuck 21km 2hr 54min (94th of 129)
02/07/2017 King of the Mountain 16km 1hr 41min
20/05/2017 Ultra-Trail AUSTRALIA 100km DNF (at 58km and 10hours 38min)
26/03/2017 Bloated Goat 30km 5hr 18min
18/12/2016 6 inch 48km 6hrs 41min
16/10/2016 Melbourne Marathon 4hours 53min
25/09/2016 WTF 50 miler DNF at 55km
14/08/2016 Truth 50km DNF at 25km
3/07/2016 Gold Coast Marathon 4.11
14/05/2016 Ultra Trail Australia 50km 9 hours 50min
3/4/2016 My 20th consecutive Bridges fun run 10km 52.20 (hammy strain)
12/3/2016 Six Foot Track DNF at 30km 5 hours.
---------------------- 20/12/2015 6 inch 47km 6 hours 43min
15/11/15 Bloated Goat 30km Trails race (1600m Vert) 5hrs 43min
18/10/15 Melbourne Marathon 4.05
13/09/15 Fremantle 10km 47min 22
30/08/15 Perth City to Surf Marathon 4 hours 00min 20 secs.
05/07/15 GCM 4.11
24/05/15 R4R Half Marathon 1hr 46min 13secs
12/04/15 Bridges 10km 49min 53secs.
04/04/15 Perth Trail Series Truth & Consequences 50km ULTRA 8hours 49min
14/03/15 Six Foot Track 45km 6hrs 14min 11secs Smashing PB!!! (32min)
21/12/14 6 inch Trail 47km 7hrs 06min 30secs
12/10/14 Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 8min (8th fastest marathon in 25 finished)
14/09/14 Fremantle 10km 49min 26 (first K 3.47 5k split 23.02)
31/08/14 Perth City to Surf 42.2k 4hrs 34min
06/07/14 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1.49
15/06/14 Perth Marathon 4.48
01/06/14 Elleker Half Marathon 1.59.
21/04/14 40 miler DNF (28miles)
06/04/14 18th Bridges 10km 48min 47secs...since 1997
08/03/14 6 Foot Track 45km 6hrs 47min 02. (824th) A PB!!! :-)
09/02/14 Snakes and Ladders 15km 2.05
15/12/13 6 inch Trail Ultra 7.24
27/10/13 Rottnest Marathon 4.16.41
13/10/13 Melbourne Marathon 4.12.55
25/08/13 Perth City to Surf Marathon 4.13.28
11/08/13 Perth Half Marathon 1.54.05
28/07/13 Fremantle 10km 50.06 (very sick but first 1k in 3.55)
07/07/13 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1.47.29

16/06/13 Perth Marathon 4hrs 19min 55secs
My 10th consecutive Perth Marathon...Click to see -> how I became a SPARTAN...

19/05/13 Joondalup Half Marathon 1hr 58min 26secs 310th of 495.
07/04/13 Bridges 10km 54min 45seconds.
09/03/13 6 Foot Track 45km 6 hours 54 minutes 20 seconds. 740th of 804...blog post or ...photos! page.

24/02/13 Perth Trail Series Qi Gong 14km 1hr 37min 04 Placed 79th of 117 finishers.
09/02/13 Busselton Half Marathon 1hr 51min 58 secs 219th. full Busso results here
02/11/12 John Gilmour 10k track 47.17 ..see here
14/10/12 Melbourne Marathon 3hrs 49min 52secs ..(777.)
16/09/12 Fremantle 10km 47min 16
26/08/12 City to Surf Marathon 4hrs 42min 41 secs
15/07/12 Lake Joondalup 10km 47min 30.
01/07/12 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1hr 44min 49 secs. 1668th of 9035 finishers

17/06/12 Perth Marathon 4hrs 6min .. (post and photos here)
20/05/12 Joondalup Half Marathon 1hr 47min 01secs. (151st of 313 finishers)
15/05/12 Masters 5000m 21min 58secs
13/05/12 Bunbury Half Marathon 1hr 46min 45 secs. (76th of 240 finishers)
22/04/12 PTS Ellis Brook 21.8km trails race 3hrs 12min 28secs. 39th.
01/04/12 Bridges 10km 47min 02
25/03/12 17.3km (690m ascent) Swissmurdie trails race 2hrs 19min 17secs 54th of 60.
20/03/12 MastersWA 1500m in 5.56, 100m in 14.3, 400m in 76.4, 5000m in 23.33.
26/02/12 WAMC Swan Twilight 5km 24.32
26/02/12 Perth Trail Series Qi Gong 14km 1hr 44min 08 secs 70th of 102.
04/02/12 Busselton Half Marathon in 1hr 49min 31 secs.
18/12/11 6 inch 46km 5hrs 30min PB!
09/10/11 Melbourne Marathon in 4hours 02minutes 49secs...photos...

12/09/11 Fremantle 10km in 45minutes 50 secs.
7/8/11 Perth Half Marathon in 1hr 47min 46 secs.
17/7/11 Lake Joondalup 10km in 46min 33secs.
19/6/11 Perth Marathon in 4 hours 12min 54secs (351st of 547.)
12/6/11 Lake Monger 10km in 48min 09secs
22/5/11 Bunbury Half Marathon 1hr 51min 44secs 109th of 261 finishers
10/4/11 Bridges 10km 52min 55
12/3/11 6 foot 45km in 6hrs 53min 07 secs...819th...of 877...33 DNF's...4 outside 7hr cutoffRace Report and race photosPre & post race photos,initial ELATION
Note; Completing 6 foot is a major goal achieved which I have had in mind since 2005!!!!!!!

4/3/11 3000m in 12min 40 (19th of 19 finishers)Momentum building a little,sub 13 done! :-)
18/2/11 5000m in 23min 31 (20th of 20 finishers...4 DNF's)..results
5/2/2011 21.1km Busselton Half in 1hr 51min 41 secs for 124th of 218 finishers.
19/12/10 46km 6 inch trails race in 5hr 49min (63rd of 79 finishers)
10/12/10 5000m in 22.43 18th of 18!
5/11/10 John Gilmour 10,000m in 47min 36. (23rd of 31)
10/10/10 Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 5min...2895th of 5027 finishers...
12/9/10 Fremantle 10km in 46min 53...a big SB and my best time since 2005!
29/8/10; 42.2km in 4hrs 15min for 537th of 830 finishers...my 6th best of 12 M. finishes.
19/8/10; 5000m in 22min 06.0 secs (SB by 0.6 of a second, & Stan did a SB also that night)
22/7/10; 5000m in 22min 06.6 secs. (SB and 17secs off my track PB)
20/6/10 Perth Marathon in 4.30.
13/5/10; Masters 2000m 7.55 (first sub 8min run since 2005) & 5,000m 22.42
22/4/10; Masters 800m 2.46 & 5,000m 22.29!~(2nd best ever track 5,000m, track PB is 21.49,)
3/4/10; Australian Masters 35-39yrs; 4th in 1500m 5min 34secs. see here...
28/3/10; Bridges 10km in 48min 39secs. 388th of 1646
25/3/10; 300m in 47.6, 600m in 1.57.0 100m in 14.6
18/3/10; Masters 1500m in 6.03 & 10,000m in 49min 35
28/2/10; 4th place in 6 hour Track Race at Coker Park; 45.003km
6/2/10; Busselton 21.1km in 1hr 52min 50 secs
20/12/09;6 inch 46km 6hrs 16min
15/11/09; Peninsula 5km 22min 5225th of 73.
6/11/09; John Gilmour 10km 48min 39
11/10/09; Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 11 min 33 secs
4/10/09; Freo funrun 5km in 22min 53 secs
... ...
2011; 5hrs 30min 6 inchPB!! 2012; 3hrs 49min PB(Melbourne Marathon)!!2014; 6hrs 47min PB! @ 6 foot!

The next big things racing wise maybe;

6 inch 46km
on 16th December @ 0430hrs, countdown (activated a few days before?) is;

Kathryn and I welcomed our daughter K into the world May 2015 A.D.!

Kathryn and I welcomed our daughter J into the world June 2010 A.D.!
Kathryn and I welcomed our son J into the world in late July 2007 A.D.!
Our challenge is to be good parents with the Creator Gods help!

... 2004 ...2005 ...2006 ...2007... >...2008...2009...2010 ...2011... 2012.

but for the most important thing in life;
there is only 2 ways to live!...Bible Gateway...

Saturday, March 19, 2011

6 foot the race photos and recovery

6 foot complete resultssays I was 819th of 877 starters, with 34 DNF's and 4 outside the 7 hour cutoff. To complete this race in under 7 hour cutoff still a source of major elation 3 weeks later for me as this has been a major goal of mine since I setup this blog in 2005 (6 years ago). Only regrets are that the time (6hrs 53min 07 secs) is a bit slower than I was hoping for, and that Kathryn and my children Jacob and Jordan couldnt be there. However that could be fixed in future years maybe, and very minor regrets in the face of huge joyous elation.

No internet connection at home on the PC at the moment due to unpaid bills, not sure when I can afford to get it up again could be weeks/months away. quads sore for 4 days after 6 foot. Calf sore for last few days hoping to be running this weekend again...in the meantime I have very limited internet options on my phone, at libraries when I am not working 50 hours and at my parents etc..Here are a sample of my 6 foot race photos...heaps more on facebook...blogging in detail will have to wait til later....

UPDATE 2nd April 2011...Preoccupied with more important things like paying the rent. The last few weeks have been a desperate struggle. At library now, trying to make a start on blogging before my memory of the events becomes too hazy. Probably won't finish blogging today but hope to do so at the bottom of this post during the month of April or MayIve run a 6km in 35min (HR 153), and did a walk/jog 6km with my wife Kathryn in the last week or so. Thats all since 6 foot. Pathetic. No injury issues so far, so probably well and truly ready to hopefully get training and racing again soon now I've had 3 weeks off.

Am going to try and start blogging about my 6 foot experience on the bottom of this post. It will be a work in progress over several weeks, and I hope to get to linrary internet enough to complete it in April, so check back onto this post each week if you are interested...;

6 foot complete resultssays I was 819th of 877 starters, with 34 DNF's and 4 outside the 7 hour cutoff. To complete this race in under 7 hour cutoff still a source of major elation 3 weeks later for me as this has been a major goal of mine since I setup this blog in 2005 (6 years ago). Only regrets are that the time (6hrs 53min 07 secs) is a bit slower than I was hoping for, and that Kathryn and my children Jacob and Jordan couldnt be there. However that could be fixed in future years maybe, and very minor regrets in the face of huge joyous elation.
So massively, massively happy to get this race done!!!

Just getting to the start line in this race was a massive challenge in itself. First there is the issue of the costs of airfares and accomodation. I got a big payout in October 2010 so I took advantage of that to book my airfares (about $400) from Perth to Sydney and back then, and also one nights accomodation on the Friday night before the race, as I knew that come March I would struggle to have the money and it would be hard to get anyone else to finance my running obsession. I did however hope that I might be able to save up and pay for Kathryn and my children to fly there also, and to book a saturday night also. As it turned out thats was totally not an option and I had to take out a secret cash converters loan to pay the $135 entry fee. Finished paying that off in late March. Before all of that I failed to get an entry spot and had to go on the waitlist in early December 2010, and finally got my entry offer in February. Then there was hassles getting to and from Perth airport, which is a costly tricky affair, and I ended up spending the night at the airport on the way back as I couldn't afford a taxi. With better planning maybe this could have been avoided. Then there was the trainfares from Sydney to Katoomba. The massive kindness of Mark and his wife in letting me have a room at their apartment on the Saturday night free of charge.
Also my cousin in Sydney put up with me for a day and drove me to the airport. Other big financial issues and other major hassles post race, so all in all a big logistical challenge to get to the start line, and then recover in the week after the race. I am not trying to have a go at anyone about this just merely sharing some of the challenges involved for someone with limited resources. Anyhow enough about that, its time to start posting about the race itself.
Mark and Rhonda kindly picked me up from my hotel on race morning as arranged. After a week of mostly 3-4 hours sleep per night, I had managed 6 hours of sleep on the night before, and felt refreshed, energized and ready to go with a resting heart rate of 38 beats per minute, my best one for the week, so felt good. The lightning and heavy rain show from the night before had disappeared. One of my powerades was leaking so drank that before the start. I'd picked up my racepack the night before at the Carrington, and met a few other runners there including Glenda, Nigel and Liz Hubbard (at Subway...ex-West Australians from Booragoon area!!! how freaky is that), and Colin Jeftha the race guru!!!. I felt like I was in a very good dream, hard to believe it was real, that I was actually in Marks hire car heading to the parking area to catch shuttle bus to the start. The parking area was very well organised. Short bus ride to start. Caught up with coolrunners Plu!, flying emu, running angel and go-girl at the start. They seemed pretty cool people, nice to meet people I only knew from online. They called us in to wave 4 (The first 3 faster waves had already started)...and I got a spot towards the back, with Jane,Glynis and Sanet (from the Darlington C-team, and all did 6 inch in 2010) nearby. Also spotted Arrrtgrrl I think near the front of the wave.

Then we were off, and before long the narrow trail started to go steeply downhill, only room for 1-3 runners alonside each other. Then it was single file. I tried to pass as many people as I could in this bit, as I had heard about the steps, and I wanted to gfet to the 15km mark in a good time. My rcae plan was not detailed, but simply get to river crossing (15km) in under 2 hours, get to top of Pluvi (26km?) in under 4 hours and get to finish in 6-7 hours.
Then we hit the steep slippery steps, and it felt so surreal like going through a rainforest. Slow progress and already the quads very sore...Chatted with Clay from melbourne for a bit (blue shirt in my photos)
on the way down the steps. It was a big challenge staying upright an balanced. Eventually we finally got to the bottom. Then it was a 4wd track where I was able to start running hard.

update 23/5/11;
In this section I could see the incredible views back up the cliffs, and I stopped for 4 min for a pitstop. Ran hard for awhile and caught up with the group clay was running with...
Probably worked a bit too hard, so had to back off a bit.
My memory is a bit hazy now a few months later, but I know we climbed over some of the steps that cross fences, and got a cheer from some spectators near the first drinks stop. Started to get some single track stuff, and some hills. Nothing major though. I think I ran with one of the Cool runners in the 1000 day mileage challenge very briefly during this section maybe. Eventually we got to some very narrow and dangerous single track kangeroo track type trail where we were forced into single file. This was about 10km-14km into it. I was still running at a good pace, and avoiding drinks at this stage mostly...At one stage about 10 of us got stuck behind a bloke in a dark blue top who was going very slow and would not step aside and let us through. Some of the runners were complaining about it, but I just waited, and when I saw the thick bush thin out a bit I seized my opportunity and jumped and sprinted hard through the bush alongside the trail, and managed to pass the bloke in the blue top and a few others behind him. Almost lost my footing but kept balance somehow... Big ankle injury potential in this section. Eventually about 5-10 runners also got past and they were pushing me at a pace faster than I wanted up to another little bunch of runners. I was keen to stick with a good pace until the river crossing, but I could tell they wanted to go much faster, so I stepped aside for about 3 of them, and tried to settle my pace down a bit. I was aiming to get to Coxs crossing in under 2 hours, anything better than that would be a bonus. We passed a very rickety looking bridge over the river valley, and did a few taxing ups and downs as the single file track continued. I stayed with a small bunch, although a few of them went further ahead on their own. Was starting to feel a bit tired, and when I got to the river finally with Walter and Glenda (who I met briefly at race pack collection the night before and by accident just happened to be running at similiar pace to me at this point...) just behind me, I was glad to make it in 1hr 51min. It wasn't that deep, in fact my attempt at swimming didn't work too well, so I pretty much waded through waist deep water... I couldn't be bothered putting my shoes in plastic bags, but I am glad I had them with me as they protected other things in my hydration pak from getting wet. In hindsight I probably would have been better off taking my shoes off, as they filled up with small gravel which was horrible. Took awhile to get that out of my shoes after the river crossing. I was very happy with my time up to this point. I lost several minutes sorting out my shoes here...But if I had not done that, no doubt blisters would have forced me into a DNF, so I had to do that.

Then it was the start of the hills towards minisaddle.

PLUVI and MINISADDLE (800m of ascent in about 10km)
Straightaway I could see it was going to be a struggle. I worked hard, but was finding that jogging was not really that easy, and I was stuck in a walk a lot of the time. Had some good chats with a few others. But they were all going past me. It was obvious my hill strength wasn't good enough. In addition the pack I had on my back with several litres of drinks was making it very hard, the extra couple of kg to drag up the hill with my normal 78kg or so was a lot. Jane, Glynis and eventually Sanet all passed me on the hills, (They got to Coxs Crossing 10 minutes behind me) and they all looked strong, especially Jane and Glynis. After Mini-saddle, I was struggling and made big use of a drink station. Basically walking heaps, and only trying to run every now and then. Wasn't walking fast really either. I think we crossed some more creeks at some stage too, some were a bit hard and my feet got wet, but not too bad. I remember this big switchback. We also started to get passed by the utes from the Rural fire service volunteers from about here onwards occasionally on mostly gravel 4wd track...Incredible scenery!!!, but mostly just trying to keep going up...Drink stations total oasis points from here on, and I started to use the drinks in my pak a lot. Eventually I saw the straw brooms of the sweepers below as we got into the teeth of the Pluviometer.... I felt gone!!!!!!!!!!! I could hear them and the pacers (I later found out their names were Jane and Robyn) below, and me and some other runners started to worry about getting swept. I really started to wonder if a DNF was what I was headed for here. However I figured I had come this far so was going to fight as long as I could to stay in the race...I was really struggling to keep moving up the hills, and almost overbalancing, plus felt light headed every time I tried to jog instead of walking...Sometimes I leaned over close to the ground almost in a crawling position trying to get up the neverending hills... The pacers caught us and started to encourage us and give us the verbal kick in the backside to keep at it... I knew this was it, my last chance to stay ahead of the pacers before the top of Pluvi. I knew if I could get to the top of Pluvi and some flatter ground I might be able to get some running going again. So I dug in and tried my hardest to keep walking with the pacers. They were picking up rubbish, and really encouraged me and a few other runners heaps. A few of us got going and I remember a girl from the UK say "we cant let the sweepers get us"...I think she did get swept though...Just before we got there I saw a bloke in a black shirt wearing KT52's sit down on the gravel about 100m from the top. I could hear the sweepers behind me, and I knew I had to give my all to get to pluvi 25-26km mark (800m of elevation since coxs crossing at 15km) soon, to have any chance of staying in the race. I got there in 4.09.48, and the bloke in the black shirt about 50-100m behind me who gave up and sat down got swept. One of the pacers made a cool comment here about how we could relax now for a bit.I took another runners advice in this section to drink my last sports drink...Then the heavy rain and lightning started, and I started to run away from the sweepers...just occasional runs at first punctuating lots of walking, and as I started to recover from all the ascent, I started to run harder and more often, and I knew I was doing well when I started to pass lots of people.

24/5/11 update THE BLACK RANGE;
We were still essentially ascending, and gained another 400m of ascent in the next 15km or so, although there was some downhill and flat sections eventually. I tried to settle into a good rhythm and figured I was a good chance to beat the 7hour cutoff, if I could keep at it for the last 19km of this 45km race. However I knew I had to attack with everything I had to have any chance... Saw the sag wagon of the sweepers go by with sad runners stuck inside it being taken to the finish...

Caught up to a bloke with an injured leg, and we passed some pine trees I think with about 10km to go. Was pretty happy with my split here and it was quite flat terrain and I felt really confident at this stage, for the first time in about 3 hours. Then after an aid station with those wonderful firefighters the course seemed to swing around to the left, and there was steep downhill, which I ran hard, and passed a few more runners, and there formed a bunch of us all going hard at it. At the bottom of the hill it got very wet and muddy, with some massive puddles, and extremely slippery mud. Tried to keep feet out of the puddles a bit, and then there were two short but very steep hills to climb. Very similiar sort of hills to the ones I had run in Lesmurdie with BBC and AP in training. a few weeks before...I was able to maintain good momentum through here and didn't have to walk too much. My quads were getting very sore, and everything else was numb with pain too. Ignored the extreme fatigue and tried to keep pushing hard. Another drink station, and we crossed a bitumen road with about 5km? to go. Then it was back to single up and down track similiar to just before Coxs crossing, and also a few steps...Again I tried to keep pushing hard and keep passing other runners. Pitstop again, and then started to run out of intensity, just couldn't find anything more in the tank, and a few runners passed me....With about 3-4km to go last aid station, and I knew I was a pretty solid chance to get in under 7 hours, but also knew I had not much more to give, and that as another runner had told me (the last 2km is a miserable,miserablly hard descent). I thought I could make it, but knew if I dropped my guard I might still miss breaking the 7 hour barrier.

THE LAST 2km and the finish!
The last 2km was sooooo hard. It seemed to go on for ever and ever and I started to really worry I would not make the finish under 7 hours. My quadriceps were just screeaming out in pain, in this 400m descent in the space of 2km. I had never tried to do anything like this before, and I was already mega-spent anyway...Also it was slippery and a narrow single track. I was extremely worried I would lose my footing and go sprawling into the bush thatfell away below me. It was a bit scary, especially when other runners wanted to pass me on this section which a few did. I caught up to one person I think, but mostly was just trying to move as fast as I dared, and as fast as my quads would allow me to which wasn't very fast, basically shuffling along...Extreme pain for about 10-20minutes. Pretty significant rain, muddy kangaroo track...Then I started to hear the announcer below, and my emotions took over, somehow I kept going and after what seemed a neverending bunch of twists and turns, Jenolan Caves appeared like a mirage in the desert below. A hidden building below, I saw hundreds of people there, and a concrete path with metal safety railing stretching down to it...I glanced at my watch and knew I was going to make it with a few minutes to spare...

The rain was pouring down but I was feeling about as happy as I have ever felt, crying inside, as the finishline stood there 10-20meters away, some people cheering, I heard my name called a few times, and I may as well have been in an Olympic final, thats the feeling I felt...unforgettable.......Sure I only just made the cutoff by 6 minutes, but it was just an unbelievable emotional mix of elation and relief. A major goal achieved, and hard earned in nearly 7 hours of slog...the time on Pluvi where I thought I would not make it, the hassles I endured for weeks and months just to be in this race. It was all so totally worth it......I think I now know a bit more why Deakes cried when he won the world 50km walk in Osaka a few years back.....Special moment, so glad I was blessed to have experienced this. Have heaps of people to thank from over the years who helped me get there... A little disappointed with the time, but the main goal achieved, and a lot of lessons learnt I think. My first thought was thats it, I don't think I ever want to do this again, its done and thats it....In the weeks and months later though I have decided I would like to try it again, although It would be hard to top the emotional highs and lows of this experience. I think if I am ever good enough to qualify for Wave 3 or 2, then I would try and go back, maybe even next year, just to try and get a faster time, but either way, Ive done something I wanted to do since 2005, so thats mission accomplished in my mind...Afterwards I found Mark and Rhonda, and chatted with everyone I could, including one young girl (I think her name was Bria?) who was doing a touristy visit to the caves, not knowing there would be a race on...Caught up with a few people, got some HOT chips, and continued living the dream, including chatting with other runners on the bus, until our bus got stuck behind a fatal car accident on the way back, and we had to get a train back...Surreal experience...felt like I was on a school camp for this bit...I see now why so many people rave on about this race, and feel very blessed to have conquered it, and most of all been part of the experience in 2011!!!!!

That ends my 2011 race report I think!


Blogger plu said...

Congrats on the training, planning and preparation to get over from the west to do the race. I am glad I spotted you at the start and said hello.

cheers Plu

Sun Mar 20, 08:03:00 pm AWST  
Blogger Ewen said...

Great photos Jonathon. The last 2k down to Caves House would have been tricky in the rain.

Looking forward to the gory details when you get around to it. I'm sure you won't forget them - just the pain ;)

Mon Mar 21, 03:01:00 pm AWST  
Blogger Sling Runner said...

Congrats for completing the infamous 6 Foot !

Awesome photos and nice scenery !! Looking forward to view the race report :)

Sat Mar 26, 09:57:00 pm AWST  

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