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$2000 For Fast Feet at Sylamore 50 km Trail Run This Weekend

sylamore-50km-trail-run-casThis weekend at the Sylamore Trail 50 km in Allison, Arkansas, $2000 is ready to be handed over to anyone that can break the overall course record. That is some significant money in this sport.

The current course record is held by Dink Taylor with an extremely impressive time of 3:40:37 (avg 7:06 min/mile). This was set back in 2000 and from looking at past results (from what I could find),  it hasn’t been remotely challenged…yet.

The course includes a stream crossing with four significant climbs in the 400 feet range. Check out the profile. It is definitely not a flat course, but not mountainous either.

Q&A with Dink Taylor

I was fortunate enough to get in contact with the current record holder and he was kind enough to share some insights from his record setting day on the trail, his fitness at the time, and suggestions to break the record.

Here is my short Q&A with Dink Taylor. I hope you enjoy it.

[EB] – What do you recall from your record setting day on the trail?

[DT] – Weather was really good that day, cool and no wind. The Sylamore Creek crossing was lower than normal as well; it can be really high and take longer to cross. I went out with a couple of other guys at the front at a good pace, but it felt easy.

After going through the first aid station, it became a one man race, me against the clock. I dropped the last guy without any effort. I ran at a comfortable pace, my fitness level was so much higher than anyone else in the race that I knew there would be no competition, so I had to focus on time and effort.

I hit the half way turn around in 1:52, I thought, if I can do this again, I will break the CR. Since I did not “push” the first half, I knew it was very possible.

Coming back, I was cruising. I knew I was running fast, the only thing was, I turned my ankle a couple of times, it made it a little weak. I got a few miles from the finish and was back hammering and rolled the same ankle again, so I “backed off.” I wanted to insure the win, but it cost me breaking 3:40. I did not know I was running that fast, second place was 40 minutes back. I was pretty pumped at the finish.

[EB] – What kind of fitness did you have at the time? I noticed your marathon PR is 2:40. Was that around this same time period as your Sylamore record?

[DT] – I had just run 2:40 in December, at Rocket City Marathon here in Huntsville. I was happy with the time because it was a PR, but disappointed that I came so close to breaking 2:40 without doing it. After Rocket City, I recovered quick and easy and did some good training from there to Sylamore.

[EB] – What course advice would you give to someone trying to break your record?

[DT] – I just talked to David Riddle this morning, I believe he will be the man to break the record and he is going to do it tomorrow. Nick Lewis also is going after the race, should be a good one. I thought about going and should have made plans to do so, but I have other commitments this weekend.

I told David; first of all, don’t worry about changing shoes after crossing Sylamore creek; it is a waste of time. Second, use the first hour as a warm up, no matter who is in front, you have plenty of time to make it up and it is important to run a negative split on this course.

You can run the whole course, so don’t plan on walking any. I carry a water bottle so I don’t have to stop, it is good to have someone to hand you another bottle, I was lucky enough to have someone, so I ran every step of the way.

What do you think about that? Cool insight!

A huge thanks to Dink Taylor (owner of Fleet Feet in Huntsville, Alabama) for sharing this with us.

It sounds like there will be some speed at the front. By lunch-time Saturday, we will know if the current record still stands and if someone will take home an extra two grand. It is sure to be a fun and fast morning.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –

About the author

David Hanenburg David Hanenburg is the passionate dirt-lovin' creator of Endurance Buzz and has been playing in the endurance sports world since 2000 after knockin' the dust off of his Trek 950 hardtail thanks to a friend asking to go ride some local dirt. In 2007 he ran his first ultra on the trails and fell in love with the sport and its people. For more information on David's endurance sports journey, check out the About page.

2 Responses to “$2000 For Fast Feet at Sylamore 50 km Trail Run This Weekend”

  1. on 20 Feb 2010 at 11:14 pm Chris Russell

    Wow! $2K is serious cash! I thought Dink would be a big factor at RR but maybe he is more of a short course guy.

  2. on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:06 am David Hanenburg

    Chris – It will be interesting to see if the record was broken. I am guessing many speedsters aren’t aware of the cash waiting at this event.