Over 100 runners completed the inaugural Whispering Pines Trail Run out on the plush pine needle covered single track at Tyler State Park in Tyler, Texas. Moderate humidity added to the challenge of the rolling course but didn’t stop runners from getting dirty on a 50 km or 25 km adventure.
2012 Cross Timbers 50 mile winner, David Renfro, led a spunky group of eight through the first 10-ish miles in 1:33:13. It started getting real on loop two…for everyone. Plenty of shifting was taking place at the front as runners were dialing in that sustainable effort.
The pace slowed for most everyone on loop two except Jacob Evans…who got faster as he explains.
“I moved through the pack really quickly after starting loop two. I was still running my own race and wasn’t concerned about anyone else. Well, all the sudden I was passing people, and wasn’t sure what was going on. I had assumed that all the people that had gone off the front were well ahead of me. I had passed 4-5 people and I finally asked a guy if there was anyone in front of him. He said only one. I was now in second place. I couldn’t believe it, but at that point, made a mental decision to try and catch first place and see how it unfolded from there.”
Jacob catches the current race leader and has to decide whether he should sit-in and hang or make a break and see what happens.
“I caught him a few minutes later and ran casually together for a few miles. I made the decision in my head to try and put a gap between us on a nice little incline. I started to hear the sound of feet behind me fade so I pushed the pace even harder.”
Jacob ran loop two over two minutes faster than loop 1!
After two loops of racing, Jacob had created nearly a 10 minute gap from a chase group that contained Bruce Layne, Nic Miller, and Jonathan Moody.
With one loop to go, Jacob was running hard but waiting to hear feet from behind.
“My biggest challenge was not knowing where the rest of the field was. I kept expecting someone to catch me any second, but it didn’t happen.”
Jacob went on to win the male race in 4:50:57!
How did Jacob feel about the sub-5 hour adventure?
“This was my first 50K trail win and was really enjoyable for me. The state park was absolutely gorgeous and had some wonderful single track.”
Bruce Layne maintained second place positioning after the second loop to earn runner-up honors.
Top 5 male
- Jacob Evans – 4:50:57
- Bruce Layne – 5:07:28
- Nic Miller – 5:19:45
- Jonathan Moody – 5:30:18
- Jay Roberts – 5:39:15
El Scorcho 50k female winner (2011/2012), Shaheen Sattar, hung out in the lead group of the overall passing though the first loop in 1:40:03. Danieli Rodrigues was next in chase, nine minutes back.
This trail system was a memorable location for Shaheen.
“I ran my first trail race at Tyler State Park back in 2009 and loved it. The trail is beautiful and challenging.”
Shaheen passed through a few of the lead men to finish 5th overall and win the female race in 5:32:59!
Shaheen’s support tribe always keeps her going.
“My mom came out with me for the race so seeing her several times each loop helped get me through it. My family being there for me has and will always be the best part of my races.”
Danieli maintained her second place position since the first loop to earn second place honors.
Top 5 female
- Shaheen Sattar – 5:32:59
- Danieli Rodrigues – 5:56:34
- Jennifer Kimble – 6:21:50
- Chris Brady – 6:24:42
- Misty Spivey – 7:01:26
Maya Taylor led the female inspiration train through loop one in 1:46:49. Not far behind, Oklahoma speedster and trail race newbie, Katie Hudson, who didn’t even realize she was in second place amongst the tribe of 50km and 25km runners.
“Since the 50k race started before us there were several runners ahead of me and I had no idea or concern for what place I was in. I was out to have fun and hopefully not fall. Early in the race a girl in a bright pink top passed me running a pretty good pace.”
During loop two, Katie began to gain on race leader, Maya Taylor.
“During the second loop on a switchback portion of the course I started to see flashes of a girl in a pink top up ahead [race leader, Maya Taylor]. As I gained on a group of guys they cheered me on and said I was gaining on the girl ahead. At this point I had no idea we were in first and second place. I checked my Garmin and saw that there were only a few miles left in the race. I felt great and energized so I decided to push ahead and see if I could catch her. That became my goal for the rest of the race.”
Unbeknownst to her, Katie, crossed the finish line and won the female race in 2:38:42 with Maya less than one minute back!
“My best memories from that day would be flying down the hills over rocks and roots (without falling!) surrounded by such amazing scenery and realizing at the finish that my decision to push just a little harder really paid off.”
Top 5 female
- Katie Hudson (Oklahoma Trail Runners Association) – 2:38:42
- Maya Taylor – 2:39:03
- Brittney Dellinger – 2:54:17
- Amanda Cook – 2:57:51
- Maria Lupe Hernandez – 2:58:30
16 minute 5ker, Daniel Ludwig, displayed his top-end speed running the first 10.76 miles in 1:16:01. Christopher Payton pushed the pace in second eight minutes back.
Daniel went on to finish the 25km scamper in 1:52:27 for the male win!
Top 5 male
- Daniel Ludwig – 1:52:27
- Christopher Payton – 2:09:02
- Matthew Rybinski – 2:13:47
- Nathan Atkinson – 2:17:51
- Troy Smith – 2:18:15
Check out some of the wisest finishers. I hope this stuff fires you up as much as it does me.
- Hobert Richardson (age 65) and Robert Kosec (age 65) enjoyed a day playing in beautiful East Texas.
Life is play. Play is life.
Race Reports and Groovy Pics
- “The course was beautiful! It’s the perfect course to me..sections that had some hills, some flats, some technical, some non-technical…all incredibly scenic and pretty!” by Julie @ Trailing Along
- “I quickly came up on somewhere else but was unsure who it was. I passed them and realized I was in 4th place. Then not a few minutes later I saw the guy that had jumped off the front early walking. I couldn’t believe it.” by Jacob @ What Finish Line?
- “For around a dozen miles or so this lady has been on my tail, no matter how much I tried to lose her, she would always eventually catch up to me. I was being chased by the Terminator (helps me sometimes to think I’m being chased by wild animals, Zombies, or killer Robots), even her stride sort of resembled how the T-1000 Liquid Terminator ran in Terminator 2” by Dat @ Running Myself into a Coma
- Race pics by Movin’ Pictures
Talk some Dirt
- What did you think of this East Texas trail system?
Special thanks to Jacob Evans, Shaheen Sattar, Katie Hudson, and HB of Movin’ Pictures for all of their support with this article.
Check out the TALON Race Guide
There are 150+ regional trail/ultra races in the TALON Race Guide. Be sure to check it out if you are looking for the most complete list of events in Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. New events are always being added.
Be active – Feel the buzz!
David – EnduranceBuzz.com
Posted on 26 Nov 2012