Published on June 10th, 2013 | by Phyl Newbeck0
Adamant 20-Miler Run or Relay | Race Recap
On April 27, 70 runners took part in an out-and-back dirt road race through the towns of Calais and Woodbury to benefit the Adamant Music School. This is the fourth year the Central Vermont Runners have sponsored this event, which can be done individually or as a two-person relay. Jon Copans of Montpelier finished fourth overall. The 38-year-old deputy state director for Rep. Peter Welch’s Vermont office averaged just under a seven-minute mile.
VS: Was this your first time doing this race?
JC: It was my third time. It’s a wonderful race and a very nice course. The first time I did it was when I was training for the Vermont City Marathon, and it’s really well timed as a last long run before that event.
VS: What do you like about it?
JC: There’s nothing paved: just nice, dirt, back roads, which go past a lot of nice ponds. There was no mud, so it was good, solid footing.
VS: Isn’t 20 miles an unusual distance?
JC: I don’t know of another Vermont race that’s 20 miles, although there is something in Massachusetts. If you’re on a typical marathon-training program, you ratchet up your long runs and end at 20 or 22 miles. You want to hit your last long run about a month before the marathon, and that’s exactly when this is. Normally, when you do that length run on your own, you’re thinking of water or food, but what’s beautiful about this is you’ve got great support on the course, as well as company. Typically there are others at your pace so it’s a nice way to do the last long run before the marathon.
VS: Is the course challenging?
JC: It’s a challenging course, and this year it felt more challenging. The most difficult part is between mile 17 and 19. Two of the last three miles have the most significant climbing in the race. You’ve got to have some fuel left in the tank. It’s a pretty good climb, and it felt bigger for me than in previous years. If you don’t save enough energy, you’ll pay.
VS: Would you do it again?
JC: Absolutely. At this point, I try to make it part of my spring schedule even if I’m not doing marathon training, which I’m not right now. It’s a good motivator to do the mileage over the winter and spring.
VS: There were 70 racers this year. Is that the norm?
JC: It was the biggest field they’ve had. I think part of that is because it was a gorgeous day. One year it was pouring and cold. This is the type of season where weather can dictate how many people show up, but the race is establishing itself. I think if people do it once, they’ll add it to their calendar.
VS: If you were in charge of the race, would you do anything differently?
JC: Honestly, not a thing. I’m a member of Central Vermont Runners, and they have a great series of local races. Having run big city marathons, there’s something nice about just showing up an hour before the race and not having to preregister. It’s so manageable and welcoming. Afterward, there is a fabulous meal of bread and soup at the Adamant Music School. I think it’s a great local race.