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Race Team Members Chad Wamack and Randy Whorton Take on the Mississippi 50 mile

Race Team Members, Chad Wamack and Randy Whorton, traveled to Mississippi to endure the mud and loops of the course for this year’s Mississippi 50. Below, Chad accounts for the day, and his thoughts and impressions about things always “working out” ~Rock/Creek
Saturday March 6, 2010
Mississippi 50 miler
Since the first of the year I had been focusing my training on the Mount Mitchell Challenge. It has been on the “to do list” for a couple of years. The weather leading up to this year’s event called for epic conditions and a suffer fest in the cold. I had sought out the worst conditions to train in and took my YakTrax in knee deep snow on the top of Big Frog Mtn. The week of the race I felt prepared and ready for the Challenge.
Randy MS50.jpgSometimes life throws you a curve ball and you just have to roll with it. A few days before the race I had a family member pass away and the funeral was on the day of the race. It was a Bummer all the way around. We’ve all had set backs or injuries and they never come at the right time. In hindsight I realize that there is a lot to be gained from an unexpected turn in the road. When you are deep into a long run and you reach that “low point” you just have to hang on and trust it will work out. As the miles pass by, things usually do work themselves out. Ultrarunning consistently teaches life’s simple lessons and maybe thats why we keep doing it.
Randy “The Legend” Whorton threw out the idea of me going with him to run the Mississippi 50 miler the following weekend. Randy had it all figured out. The race was full but our friend Doug Dooley was hurt so I was going to run as “Doug Dooley”. Perfect! Just like that, the game was back on. Flat and warm race conditions sounded good to me.
Randy and I made the trek down to rural Mississippi the night before the race. We got to the prerace dinner just as the pasta ran out and the race instructions were over, so we went to Waffle House to experience the local culture and some questionable food. The race start was 6 am so we shut the party down early and tried to get some rest.
The race is literally in the middle of nowhere backwoods Mississippi, which I thought was pretty cool. After a couple of wrong turns we found the start / finish and parked the truck directly along the course. The race was unique for several reasons. The first is that you run by the start/finish 4 times in the 50 miler, which is good because you can set up your own aid station and bad because of the temptation to take a chair and have a beer. The 50 mile course consisted of 3 – 12.5 mile loops and 2- 6.25 loops. The race also provides racers the option to switch up or down from the 50 mile or 50K during the run, which is another dangerous temptation if you’re running the 50 miler.
The race started in the mud and ended in the mud. Randy and I hung together for the majority of the day and enjoyed what the MS trails had to offer. “Doug Dooley” finished 9th and “The Legend”, Randal Whorton, came in 13th. It was another fun day in the woods and the miles were smooth for both of us. It always feels good to get another 50 miler under my belt. The best part was the reminder that sometimes you just have to tell yourself “It will all work out”.
Report by: Race Team Member, Chad Wamack