With a week to go before the Sinister 7 I reached out to the defending champs and course record holders the Bow Valley Harriers/Strides Running Store. They were kind enough to offer advice and pass along some tricks and tips to help the runners at this year’s Sinister 7 perform at their very best. All seven men on this team have been performing at an elite level for many years so I suggest reading on and taking there advice to heart. These swift gentlemen from Calgary will be back to defend their title so when you see them be sure to wish them luck, they’ll need it to surpass their last year’s time of 13:29:31!
Leg 1 Frank Slide 16.5K with 502m elevation 1:07:28 – Nathan Kendrick
leg 1 and the start of leg 2. Then we hang out for the runners to arrive with little to no idea as to when leg 1 runners would arrive. It made for a tough warm-up but I thought that I’d play it safe and stay close so that I would for sure be there. Before I knew it Nathan had arrived and I was off
on my leg. A little too fast to begin with but quickly settled in. It’s a long uphill and we had a large enough lead at this point that it was just a matter of putting my head down and just getting one foot in front of the other. It took a bit but eventually I was able to look up and around and enjoy the views. Near the top of the leg it flattens out a bit and gets a bit more enjoyable. Turning the corner you look back down on town and the eventual end of the leg. Downhill!! Sounds like a relief on the legs but for the first bit it’s so steep that I wasn’t able to get going and really let the legs go. Instead I found myself grabbing for trees in order to stay slow enough that I could stay in control. I heard the second place runner coming up on my and luckily at this point the downhill was flattening to a point where I could really get going. This is where I excel and was really able to fly. Through the mud and through a nice cold creek and back into town where my leg was done. Onto the grass to a cheering crowd and some delicious refreshments. Able to find some shape and enjoy the rest of the day before the heat really set in! A great leg, not without its challenges but all-in-all very enjoyable.
My advice to running this leg would be to walk some of the steeper hills, save energy and get fluids. The final third can be ran quickly, as it is flat or rolling with the final section being downhill to the beginning of leg five.