June 7, 2014
Shadow of the Giants 50K
2014 Shadow of the Giants 50K - Race Report Story
What happens in Fish Camp stays in Fish Camp, as the saying goes, but as we all know things that are magic have to be told. I feel sorry for the runners who couldn’t make the trip up to 5,000 feet, but for those that did we will say no more!
There are so many stories to be told, from my old truck breaking down when marking the course with me mate Bob on Thursday, to some dick-head runner telling me it was the closest to 7 bells we have ever started the race in 25 years. Hey, I organized good weather; had some nice friendly aid station crews and everyone got back to Green Meadows safely… what more do you want! The few runners who had to drop, sorry, but for the 122 finishers, the race was real special and one hopes we can do it all again in 2015.
I think the course gives all the runners a test, including the first timers. Not one person had a bad experience and those bloody big trees on the mile loop will be remembered, oh yes, for some the run up to Big Mike’s last aid station mile 19 to mile 22 was a test. The pre-race nosh went down well on Friday a Green Meadows. Most runners where in bed by 8:30. I managed to get a good night’s sleep on a nice sofa and even my tummy felt good… oh yes I had a hernia op 2 months ago, did I tell you that!!! The pre-race gathering at the start line as usual was entertaining to say the least, I always try to keep it low key, cos of children being around. Oswaldo did his usual late arrival 15 minutes before the start, but it didn’t take him long to find top gear and hit the first aid station leading from me mate Rick Herr. The first 8 or 9 runners did not waste much time thanking me for being there… swines! The temperature was just fine, but by 10ish, runners was detecting a 30 degree rise. Lucky for the runners most of the course is under the shade of magic pine/oak/cedar trees of all sizes. I left my 3.9 mile station after the last runner and shot off to Jackson Road where I missed the first 3 racers, lucky for me they knew the left turn after the river crossing. All the runners seemed to be enjoying their day, all the sweaty hugs I got where worth it. After the last runner left Jackson I adjusted the signage and was about to return to GMs when the 42 year old flash Mr. Lopez came into view… Wow that meant he was maybe 13 or 14 miles in front of the last runner. By the time I got back to the finish line, he was chatting with the locals. Dominic Grossman came in second and enjoyed his run, followed by Jason Wara in just over 4 hours. My mate Rob McNair finished his 25th Shadow and had a nice day in the Sierra Mountains, finished 10th… not bad for the 59 year old. My 70 year old mate and new Ultrarunning Hall of Famer inductee, Frank Bozanich, had a tough day… but survived the heat.
In the women’s division Elspeth Hamilton took top honors, coming in 13th overall. Second was Kristin Rigby only a minute back, Sarah Ferguson was third and real happy with her time and place. There were 40 lovely ladies in the race and I never got one phone number, just one bloke slipped his to me…. Swine!
OK, we must thank all the many volunteers. All do a fantastic job and get little respect, especially from me! The new Medic guys performed well, no major problems. Our new radio system didn’t function too well, my fault maybe! The Green Meadows team did good work with the pre-race nosh and the soup after the race, Lewis and B. Karen and Jan did good at the finish line, no one got lost. Obviously, you get the little prawns who want to complain about some little f….. thing… you know what I tell them! Mark me mate the photo taker… hopes you buy a shot he took… does a good job. www.markhaymond.smugmug.com
I did meet some nice folks out on the course and I thank them for their support, runners enjoy a few hand claps and the verbal abuse I offer… all good fun. All in all the 25th running of the Shadow was a success, which brings me to my final few words. Yes, you can put the race on your calendar for 2015; my old body will be available. Sorry I was not so dynamic this year cos of my Hernia operation… Oh the pain! It is just a shame I couldn’t have run with me ole mate Tropical John… We lost a few running mates this last couple of weeks, but I am sure they were somewhere listening to my pleasant demeanor echoing through the magic trees in Fish Camp.
Drop me a line if you need to. If not, I will get the
2015 race date out as soon as possible and we can plan another Magic
weekend. This is me sending lots of love and hugs! Big BAZ XXXX
My photographer mate Mark
Haymond was seen in many places on the course.