Friday, March 2, 2012

Meet Report: Mason Dixon Games

This was not the track to run a fast 200m.

I ran OK, tied my PR in the 55m: 7.32. Notable considering I had just 30 min after racing the 200m, and considering the poor track surface. I posted respectable non-PR times in the other events.

I will probably not return to this meet. The ancient track surface is not only horrendously chewed up with saw dust everywhere, but the lanes are narrow, the turns are incredibly tight, and the track actually gives and bounces a little when sprinting on it. It was downright scary to run an all-out 200m on this track. Kinda like sprinting on a catwalk. Lucky to walk away uninjured. Still, I turned my second fastest 200m of the indoor season: 25.78. The amount of torque on the feet caused 3 spikes to be ripped from my shoes. I could not use my best shoes, the Nike crowns kept breaking. So, I used my Saucony's. The track is weird. Uncharacteristically long straightaways - about 70m and very short tight turns. I feared being put in the outside lane in the 200m, 5 feet above the concrete arena floor with no guardrail. The banked turns were on risers and everything seemed to be held together with C-clamps, very rickety. Some guy would come out and occassionally have to hammer the track back together after races. Fortunately, I got lane 3 in the 200. I was in a fast heat with two 30 yr olds and a 20+ yr old college age woman! The two young guys narrowly beat me, but thankfully, I beat the girl by a few meters. She was fast! (Lutisha ran 26.15).

A huge masters story from this meet was the appearance of a new amazingly fast M55 sprinter. Bill Edwards, age 56, beat me, running a 7.18. That is .26 faster than any M55 posted this season in the 55m! He has to be the favorite to win the Nationals in the M55 60m dash. The guy is new to masters track and probably doesn't even know how high he ranks.

Due to numerous tornadoes in the area, not only was the meet delayed by 40 min, but 90% of the school kids did not come. This made the meet move very fast and provided very little rest time between races. I ran 3 races in less than 90min and scratched in the 800m, because I was whooped and would not have received but 30min rest after the 400m.

The 400 was ok. I felt tired before I started but still managed a 57.84. I ran it without blocks, and not my best effort. Still, my 3rd fastest this season.

I enjoyed chatting with some of the old timers there, they all know Dean Hayes. The meet was named after Charlie Ruter, a 90 yr old guy who founded this meet 52 yrs ago. He recently died. In it's heyday, this meet attracted nationally elite athletes. Not anymore. They need a new track and venue for this meet to have a future, in my opinion. I am still very thankful for the officials and the people who have kept this meet alive for 52 years. It is a great tradition that deserves a better facility.

The best news is that I have no injuries and should be good to train by Monday. This was my 6th indoor meet of the season.


  1. Be sure to read the excellent comments following your May 5, 2011 rant.