Monday, April 24, 2017


Clint is the lucky lottery winner of bib #347 at this year's Western States race but it takes a team to train for and run an Ultra marathon.  So far, we've been focusing on the family and team that surrounds him and is supporting his effort.  This week I wanted to learn more about Clint's two pacers for his Western States debut.  I contacted the two Dirtbag runners, Tyler and Peter, and learned that Clint is quite the pacer and crew chief himself. In fact, it sounds like he is as good at giving and supporting, as he is at running and training.

Tyler is Clint's pacer who will join him at the Foresthill Aid Station and pace him through to Green Gate. When I reached out and told Tyler I wanted to learn more about Clint and their relationship, I found out that Clint has quite the reputation of being an amazing pacer and crew member himself.  And, he has a reputation around beer, laughter, and good times.  In 2016, Clint paced Tyler at the Pine To Palm 100 mile race in Williams, Oregon.  Tyler shared that "Clint is one of the best crew/pacer I've ever had!  He is a great motivator and is happy to do whatever needs to happen to make sure his runner gets across the line."

As we have all been witnessing, Clint knows how to train and work hard.  But he also has a reputation of knowing how to have a good time, and that usually involves beer.  When I asked Tyler about his role at Western States, Tyler said that along with pacing, his job is to make sure Clint makes it to the start line. Apparently, in 2016, Tyler drove down from Ashland, Oregon to share in the shenanigans of the Mokelumne Trail Festival.  Clint typically helps volunteer at the race, and was up drinking from a keg of beer when Tyler arrived after 11 pm the evening before the 50K race.  Clint and Tyler were both registered to run the race. Tyler decided that Clint's beer should never be empty, so he kept refilling it. Needless to say, the two didn't get to bed until the early morning hours, Tyler in his truck, and Clint in his tent that was located right next the start line.  Tyler shared the story that gave birth to the term '#Clinting.'  "I woke up a little late and was changing clothes as the race started.  I took off and thought I would try to catch Clint before turning back on the out and back course.  Well, I made it to the turn around and had seen no sign of Clint!  I was very confused until I showed up at the finish line to see Clint taking finisher photos [of other runners].  Even though he was camped right next to the start line, he slept through the start of the race, and the term #Clinting was born!"  I imagine Tyler will take his job seriously at Western States; topping off someone else's beer from the keg and making sure Clint makes it to the start line. Tyler also wrote, "I'm so excited to head to States and be that same crew for him. This is going to be a pretty amazing experience!"

At Green Gate, Tyler will pass off Clint to his second pacer Peter, who will run with Clint to the finish.  Not surprisingly, the first thing Peter talked about was how great of a pacer and crew chief Clint has been.  Clint was Peter's pacer from miles 53 - 75 at this year's Angeles Crest 100 mile race.  "I asked Clint to pace me because I wanted someone who could make me laugh and keep my spirits up through the mid-section of the race and he fits that bill perfectly!"

And of course, I asked Peter to share some fun memories about Clint as well, and it happens that he shared a story that took place while they were running together at that race.  "... at Newcomb Saddle Aid Station, Clint ate some bad soup and immediately started projectile vomiting into the bushes as we were running out of the aid station.  It was a pretty hilarious moment... for me at least.  Clint yelled at me 'JUST GO!'  It was pretty dramatic."

In all seriousness, Peter repeated the same sentiment that Tyler did: "Clint was the best crew member...  He was super on the ball, not just during the race as the crew chief and pacer, but the night before, asking all the right questions and preparing himself to not miss a beat the next day."  Peter even went on to say that "... he was a big part of ensuring my success throughout the race. I'm super stoked to return the favor at States."

I missed a week posting Clint's blog during Easter Break, so I will include two weeks of Clint's training schedule.  Here is his week prior to Easter, for those of you interested in his training plan.

Last week's training 04/10/27-04/16/17
Mon - Cortisone shot in left knee.  No run.
Tues - The Ranch - strength, mobility, flexibility, tissue quality
Wed - 4.1 mile run before work.  Cortisone shot in right knee.
Thur - The Ranch
Fri -  30 mile run with little elevation
Sat - Easter celebration #1 with Becca's father
Sun - 10 mile run before Easter Celebration #2 with Clint's twin brother

Both Tyler and Peter, along with Clint's family and crew, will play a crucial role in getting Clint across the finish line at Placer High School. Clint said that his family, pacers, crew, and Bill Yeates will meet him at Robie Point and run with him down to the Placer High School track where he will finish his last mile before crossing the finish line and getting his much earned buckle.

And Clint has taken that support role with many other runners and is probably more comfortable giving support than receiving it.  Even this week, when I asked for Clint's training schedule, it just proved what his mother told me about her son.  "He puts his family before his training."   Becca threw out her back last week, so Clint completely adjusted his training schedule to make sure that he was able to take care of his responsibilities around the house and with his wife and children first.  He did all his training runs close to home to reduce the number of hours he would be away from home.

This week's training 04/17/27-04/23/17
Mon - Cap Tappers 5.6 mile run
Tues - The Ranch
Wed - 10 miles
Thur - The Ranch
Fri -  5 straight hours of yard work (Ha Ha - core workout for sure)
Sat - Helped direct Mokelumne 50 Mile/50K with Paulo
Sun - 13.1 Mokelumne River Trail Running Festival

Here is a photo of lint from this year's Mokelumne Trail Festival.  Ultra running is work, but it's also a ton of fun.

Running 100 miles requires the help of a team of people.  Ultra races usually allow for pacers who share the trail with the runner, and crews to meet at aid stations to provide food, a change of clothes, medical supplies, or a quick muscle massage.  Clint has lots of experience being both a pacer and a crew chief, and according to those he has supported, he's one of the best.    I think he can count on having a team ready to return the favor.

#seeyouinsquaw in 61 days

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