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Saturday, May 17, 2003 -- Yellow Spring - Capon Valley, WV
Capon Valley 50K Run (iPO Event Id#: 5351)
Photos by Don Parks

[Details] [Coverage]
[Overall Results] [Results by Class]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6] [Set 7] [Set 8] [Set 9]
[Set 10] [Set 11] [Set 12] [Set 13] [Set 14] [Set 15] [Set 16] [Set 17]
Past Coverage: [1999] [2000] [2001] [2002]

Race Pic
Conquering another Capon Valley 50K
Sure there was a little rain, and some nice cool temperatures, but there's no stopping the good times in Capon Valley. The fifth annual 50K was once again a huge success with record crowds coming out to enjoy the beauty of green pastures and lush forests. Throw in a little playing in the mud, some splashing through creeks, along with the infamous post-race chicken dinner, and it is easy to see why they keep coming back.

"THANK YOU" from RD Lynn Golemon

Hi Runners,

Well, another successful year. Thank you all so much for being a part of our 'run family'. We do love the event and it is especially nice to see all the smiling faces during the day.

One year we promise to have sunshine!

RD Lunn Golemon
Don't doubt Lynn's promise of sunshine
Attached is the final runner list along with the list of awards. Please be sure to let me know if there are any adjustments. I apologize for the fizzle in the awards. I was notified that we had 2 runners missing. My focus shifted and we just didn't get back to the final few awards. The 2 runners found themselves and arrived back around 6 PM and we all breathed a sigh of relief. As I said, we take runner safety very seriously, and we were out searching for over an hour before their return.

Be sure to check out the results and runner pictures on, we appreciate your support of our web page. They provide us with a great service. Don Parks was there all day Saturday getting wonderful shots of all of you on the trail.

If any of you have any funny stories about the run you would like to share, please send them on to me for inclusion in an article. The runner stories are always the best!

Hope to see all of you next year, and I wish you all -
happy trails.

Take good care,
Lynn and the Capon Valley Run Volunteer gang

Race Pic
Off and running in Capon Valley

RACE REPORT - Hamilton F. Tyler

I awakened on race day of the Capon Valley 50k (31 miles) on May 17, 2003 at 5:00 am, over an hour before my alarm was to go off. The race is held in the Capon Valley in West Virginia. The start is at Yellow Spring, West Virginia. I think I finally got to sleep at about 1:00 am because I was so keyed up for this race.

I had my standard breakfast of a banana, a bagel and a Powerbar. The weather was overcast, a slight drizzle and temperatures in the high 40s. It had been raining some that night and the past few days had been very wet. I headed down to the start which was scheduled for 8:00 am. As we assembled for the start, all of a sudden, instead of a gun or horn, there was a yell, "the course is open," and everyone took off. My time last year in this race was 4:38. I was shooting for sub-4:30 this year.

The first 2 miles are on roads with a couple of steep uphills. I ran at a reasonable pace, but did walk about 100 yards up the steepest uphill. I hit the first aid station at 2.9 miles in 23:13, including a stop to top off my water bottle. Because hydration was not going to be that big of an issue with the cool temperatures, I decided just to carry a plastic throwaway 17 oz. waterbottle.

Race Pic
Hitting the first stream crossing
The next section was long, a little over 6 miles. I ran some with a guy named Bill from Charleston, WV who was into adventure racing. We were making a pretty good pace. Just before the second aid station was the first of about 12 stream crossings.

I hit the second aid station at 9.3 miles in 1:16. I filled my water bottle quickly and bolted, wasting no time. I think it was during this section that I ran with another guy from West Virginia, Jason. We ran together for a mile or so until both he and Bill got away from me on a steep section. I was starting to breathe a little hard.

I think the power lines were in this section as well. The only pleasant thing about running the power lines was I got a pretty decent view, one of the few I got all day due to clouds. Other than that, the power lines were steep ups and steep downs. I walked a little of the really steep uphills. The downhills were so steep you really had to watch yourself and the wet shoes did not help any. I hit the third aid station which was around mile 13 in 1:46, close to an 8 minute pace which was well ahead of last year.

Race Pic
Racing into check point 5
I was now running more by feel than anything else. I started feeling a little better. I think I took a gel and a Succeed tablet right before the third aid station, so that probably helped. I ran with a group of 3 other guys for a few miles, including some particularly muddy sections. I hit the 4th aid station in 2:42 which is right around 20 miles. I think around there was the biggest climb which for most, including me, was a long hike uphill.

Once I got to the top I was rewarded with a nice long gradual downhill. I pulled away from the other 3 guys on the downhill, but knew they were not far behind. I felt good and started picking it up even more. There were more stream crossings and a tricky section with bad footing that was a climb out of the riverbed that was very slow.

I hit aid station 5 around 24 miles in 3:14. As I walked the next steep uphill, I could hear the 3 guys below me coming into the aid station and I started to run scared. I also pushed hard because it was only 4 miles or so to the last aid station and then it was mostly downhill on paved roads for the last 2.5 miles. I started to drag a little so I popped another gel and a Succeed tablet.

Race Pic
Sites on the finish line
I hit the last aid station at mile 28.5 in 3:48. I did not even stop and dropped my water bottle so I was not carrying anything. As I came out of the meadow and turned onto the road I caught a brief glimpse of Jason. I picked it up a little but never saw him again. The downhill was very fast and I could smell the finish line. I ran the last section in 18:22 for a finishing time of 4:06 and change.

I ended up 7th overall out of 164 finishers. 4:06 is a PR for me by 32 minutes. Only in an ultra can you better your PR by over half an hour. This was only my 4th 50k which also makes it a little easier to PR. At least 10 minutes of the improvement was gained by spending almost no time at the aid stations this year. I did not eat anything except gels on the run. It is also much quicker to fill a water bottle than a Camelback.

Never in my wildest dreams did I think I could run 4:06. The conditions were good for me with the low temperatures because I wilt in the heat. The course was very well marked although I talked to some people who had gone off course. Two runners were absolutely lost and not found until 6:00 p.m. A very good chicken dinner provided by the Yellow Spring Ruritans completed a great day. This is a great race. I highly recommend it, particularly to any first time ultra runners.