You can’t say that people were not warned in advance! The forecast called for hot weather. The race predictions called for slower times. The racers and trekkers were ready, well trained, wearing cool clothing, and carrying cool beverages.
Still, no one was expecting this kind of heat!
“It was a brutally hot day, and brought me to my knees (literally!) at the finish, said second-time racer Norwood Styles. “I almost stopped halfway up Pok-O! Shaking, stumbling and dizzy!”
“Not sure which was tougher, this or 2013,” said racer Karen Lounsbury, referring to the opposite extreme, the cold conditions which forced her, and 20 others to drop out of the race three years ago. 29 did not finish this year in the heat. Lounsbury finished.
One person who did not seem at all fazed by the heat - and he may have been the only one - was 21-year old AUSTIN HUNECK, who repeated as overall race champion, and appeared to still have plenty left in the tank when he crossed the finish. “I certainly wouldn't say that I felt fresh at the finish by any means, I guess I probably felt good compared to a lot of other people, but I think my body deals with extreme weather pretty well and I wasn't completely cooked.”
Huneck’s 11-minute margin of victory was one of the largest in race history, as he overtook 2013 winner Jan Welford with just over one mile to go, and cruised up the final mountain. “I knew if I paced it well I could have a good Sugarloaf to Pok-O-Moonshine split and would make up a lot of time, so that's where I made my move. I didn't catch Jan until the base of Pok-O and I know how strong he is, so I wasn't confident I had it won until I was at the finish.”
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HOT... HOT... HOT!
The weather is going to effect finish time and performances but is not going to prevent both the men's and women's races from being closely contested!
"On Saturday, the trails will be in excellent shape, but the temps will be too warm for breaking records. In fact, most runners will be roughly 5 to 7% slower than their goal times", says Danny Sheridan, who worked out a heat handicap to determine finish times. "In the end, the race will come down to a 'Road Runner' vs. a King of the Mountain!"
Find out Sheridan's projected finish times, and race comments, for all 112 racers and trekkers.
CLICK HERE FOR THE PREDICTIONS
Pok-O Summit Party Eliminated
From- Tim Singer & Greg Henderson, Patch Sprint co-founders and directors:
It is with great regret - yet full understanding - that we are discontinuing one of the event’s most popular features: the party on top of Pok-O-Moonshine.
Tim was contacted by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), whose representative informed us that they were very concerned with the large number of people congregating on top of Pok-O, for the race finish. Their concerns were for both environmental, and social reasons.
At first, the DEC wanted us to move the finish line elsewhere but, after some discussion, it allowed us to preserve the finish under the following conditions (READ MORE):
Weather predictions for this weekend are unsettled, with a mix of sun, clues and storms, with warm temperatures forecast.
Rain or shine, the show goes on! However, there are a few events that could lead to the cancellation or postponement of the race, as well as situations that would necessitate a participant to drop out.
Read more to see event lightning policy and other race interruption protocol.