Lori Callahan and Charlie Andrews are the two newest runners to step up to and complete the Tuckahoe 10-Mile Challenge for 2008.
Add two names to the Tuckahoe 10-Mile Challenge roster: Lori Callahan and now RUR regular Charlie Andrews. We couldn't have asked for a better day to run the loop--60 degrees or so, sunny, and the rain hadn't done much to make any parts of the trails unpassable.
When we met at the Washington Street/Masonic building parking lot, notably missing were Landy's scooter and any Shilliday vehicle, but Mike Keene stopped by to say hello, talk shop, and try to figure out a way to beam himself out to Tuckahoe for a run.
By Tuckahoe standards, it was a busy day at the park, with a few groups of dog walkers, hikers, two trail clearing/maintenance crews (many thanks to them for their important work!) and a couple of trail (horse) riders. Everyone justifiably looking to cash in on the weather.
It was great fun talking to Charlie in the actual waking hours, and getting to know Lori, who I have only passed a medal/trophy to for being the first female finisher of the Bridge-to-Bridge half-marathon last year, and then seen at other area races.
I have to give some props to Charlie, who "allegedly" has just been running 3-5 miles, 3 times per week of late. On Thursday, he dusted through 7-8 miles, and then today, had no trouble knocking out 10 miles of mud and hills. We've made it an unofficial goal to see how far/fast we have to run Charlie before he looks winded or stops smiling ;)
Lori becomes the first female to complete the Tuckahoe Challenge. With 3:40 marathon speed around Easton, and great speed in 10-miles and half-marathons to boot, my guess is "first female" is a term she is somewhat used to hearing.
Gender aside, Lori earned herself two prestigious and coveted awards today. The first is the "Best Mud" award, which she took home almost instantly, about halfway into the run, taking a spill at the first stream crossing on the Creekside Cliff Trail. Charlie thanked her for helping him decide which way to cross, and also earned himself the "Gentleman's Award," by not running across Lori to keep his shoes dry. When you take a spill into the drink or mud, that's hard to top, and Charlie and I all but conceded the award at that point.
For those that have seen Joel's Golden-Globe-worthy short film of my creek crossing last Sunday, the crossing this Sunday was more sure-footed, if less energetic, with a strong current kicking through. Many thanks to Landy for pioneering the unassisted crossing, which has become one of my favorite parts of the loop. Lori enjoyed the course's chief "water feature" as well, with Charlie opting for high ground. He is a car guy, and says that he had the best interest of the Honda Pilot in mind. Let's say his true motivations are still questionable.
We had some muddy hills on Little Florida Trail and Pee Wees (not muddy enough for skiing, Joel), and somewhere among the two trails, Lori picked up her second award for "Best Blood," which may have been the kick-back from a branch of thorns. She pushed ahead, undaunted, and reported on our return to Easton, that she might look trail-thrashed, but she was ready to go back.
So two more names will be on the end-of-the-year party invitation list, and two more pairs of shoes have been baptized by the mud and water of Tuckahoe. The next trail trip of the RUR crew may just be a mid-week romp. Stay tuned and congrats to Lori and Charlie. Next up: Tuesday morning, back to the dark!