Monday, December 28, 2009

Putting the first "T" in NETT

A trio of Ponyettes took to the BU track this weekend to run their first-ever track race(s) while Frank KJ took what looks to be the final lead in the Mini-Pony Cup. And Chris Smith just seemed to like it so much he came back for his second track race in as many decades!

Here's Karyn's report:
"Not sure which would be easier--an afternoon of water-boarding or another 1-mile track race. But at least I can say I now have at least one of those under my belt.
We had a great NETT showing today. Tina and Frank showed the greatest courage, running BOTH the 1-mile and the 800. Chris and I "specialized" in the mile. And Chrissy showed up about an hour after the registration table had been removed (noonish) and sweet-talked her way into the 800!

After Frank and Chris battled it out in the mile, with Frank edging out Chris by a few seconds in the end (finishing in about 5:13 and 5:16 respectively), eventually it was time for the 8th heat of the mile. Tina and I lined up side by side. She claimed she would be 'slow,' and proceeded to take off so quickly that I didn't see her again until the finish line. She finished in 6:18 to my 6:55.

In the 800 meters, Frank finished in 2:25; Tina in 2:53; and Chrissy in 3:13.
Of course, I should mention that Little Skittles kicked Tina's and my collective Mini-Pony butts in the mile (he actually lapped his beloved mother as you can see in this pic) finishing in 5:55; and also beat Chrissy and Tina in the 800 meter race (finishing, I think, in 2:41)."

Are there no ends to a mother's love?

After his last-minute point-grabbing in the MiniPony Cup, Frank says: "Oh, the mini-pony cup. Hmmm, in the end we all know that Crazy was uncontested; afterall that's why he's called Crazy! I did hear Karyn mentioning something about racing Iditarod next year though so Crazy might need to consider doing an Ironman!"

Thursday, December 24, 2009

NETT loses one of our favorite masots

The NETT News Room got some sad news this week. Bertram Pants Winther, aka Bert the Pug, has left us at the ripe old age of 14. Bert was an avid running fan and supportive of NETT from its inception. As you can see here, he was at the barefoot mile race, he was a frequent volunteer and greeter at the Chamberas Cross Country Race and loved to attend social events. He was a very very good dog and will be missed. Have fun in Carrot Heaven Bertie Pants. You earned it.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

NETT shows up all over the ENTRS standings

Once again, big congrats to Marshall Randolph for his winning the Eastern New England Trail Race Series this year and Jack Burke for placing second overall. In addition to Marshall and Jack, NETT had members in the top three in a host of age groups. Here's a quick look at the standings:

Men Overall:
Place Name Age Town Team Races Points
1. Marshall Randolph 60 Wellesley, MA NETT/ CSU 14 1109.70
2. John Burke 43 Cambridge, MA NETT 15 1095.09
3. Rob MacDonald 30 Rowley, MA 10 648.49

Women 30 to 39:
3. Adrienne Cyruilik 35 Belmont, MA NETT 4 349.12
Men 30 to 39:
2. Dave Hannon 38 West Roxbury, MA NETT 6 542.15

Women 40 to 49:
1. Kristin Hall 42 Arlington, MA NETT 4 755.03

Men 40 to 49:
1. John Burke 43 Cambridge, MA NETT 15 1095.09 (Second overall)

Men 60 to 69:
1. Marshall Randolph 61 Wellesley, MA CSU/ NETT 14 1109.70

Breaking News: Last minute push planned for Mini Pony Cup points

This tip just into the NETT Newsroom: Reliable, but unnamed sources have told NETT News there will be some very interesting faces showing up at the BU track meet on Saturday, which could have a significant impact on the standings in the Mini Pony Cup.

While we're not at libery to provide names or events under the threat of very specific legal action and threat of very specific bodily harm, it does look like the leaderboard could see a major shakeup in the last full week of competition. Be sure to check back for details or even better, head down to the BU indoor track to watch it firsthand and report on it here (since the NETT News Team may well be on the road this weekend).

Monday, December 21, 2009

Smith's track attack creates three-way tie in Mini Pony Cup

By running his first track race since high school, Chris Smith scored an extremely valuable point in the Mini Pony Cup this weekend, crashing his way into a three-way tie for first with Jerry and Frank KJ.

The last-minute push by Smith comes after last week's scandalous exit of Crazy Dave and Jennifer Shultis. Just to be sure he was counted for his track meet, Chris ran both the mile and the 400 at BU this weekend, clocking 5:16 and 70 respectively. Not bad for a guy who hasn't raced on the boards since Reagan was president!

With only a week and a half to go, it looks very unlikely any of these three competitors will add points, but there is one more BU meet to score at which either Jerry or Frank could pony up to. And there are plenty of dark horses such as Eminem, who hosted a brunch in an effort to fatten up the rest of the competitors (or get them lost in a snowbank!) and Eri, who quietely has snuck into the top five.

Ironically, the original rules to the MPC stated:
"In the event of a tie, the judges (Crazy Dave, Frank KJ, Paul Miller and Jerry D) will make a ruling based on the person who moved the furthest outside their comfort zone. As with everything we do here at NETT, this is a fun, informal, low-key “challenge” and not a cutthroat competition."

However, since two of the judges are involved in the tie, and a third has been disqualified from the competition in a recent scandal, the NETT elders will appeal to Dr. Miller to break any such ties (I'm sure he can come up with a physics equation to figure it all out, right?)

More to come....

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Even the worst of weather can't keep NETT from its waffles

Big thanks to Eminem for hosting the Holiday Brunch again this year. Karyn says "here are some photos of those brave, intrepid souls who forced themselves to eat waffle after waffle for the good of the team. What a courageous bunch they were!"

Friday, December 18, 2009

Scandal deepens as Shultis withdraws from Mini Pony Cup in protest and disgust

The NETT News Team received word this morning that NETT’s most decorated member, adventure racing and multisport specialist Jennifer Shultis, was so disgusted by the recent revelations about Crazy Dave that she has withdrawn from the Mini Pony Cup only days before its ever-more dramatic close.

In a statement provided to the NETT News Team by her communications representative, Shultis said the following:

“I had supported this event and enjoyed competing head to head with all of the competitors in the Mini Pony Cup, but the recent revelations and pending criminal case against Crazy Dave have led me to make the painful decision that I must withdraw from the Mini Pony Cup, as I no longer feel this event is in keeping with my personal goals and aspirations. I would appreciate an appropriate level of privacy for myself and my family to allow us to heal during this very painful period.”

However, NETT News has learned that less than 24 hours prior to issuing the carefully crafted statement, Shultis was reportedly furious about the situation, and blasted Mini Pony Cup organizers not only about Crazy Dave’s behavior but also about a minor scoring oversight (in which organizers failed to count close to a dozen of Shultis' qualifying events, effectively eliminating her from the competition).

“Front runner, my a$$!” Shultis raged in an expletive-filled tirade on the Mini Pony Cup’s email list earlier this week. “This friggin’ thing was rigged from the start! Where am I on this pansy-ass list? I won a snowshoe marathon, I did Seven Sisters in a skirt for Christs’ sake (no need to mention that I was still beaten by a pregnant woman), I won Sea to Summit (of the two women entered). I'm the God-damned 2009 US Masters Champion in adventure racing, I was third in the American Zofingen (yes, that is really the name) and I did a little thing called an IRONMAN! I command some F-ing respect now!"

(As this photo from November 2007 shows, the tension between Shultis and Crazy Dave has been boiling for some time.) Shutlis’ credentials are certainly head and shoulders above most of the other competitors in the Cup, but her decision last year to relocate to a small cabin in Northwest Labrador and train soley in purple sneakers did lead many Cup competitors to question her commitment to NETT. “I have a coyote tattooed on my heart,” she told the NETT News Team when questioned about the move.

Where will this story go next? Check back on Go Mini Ponies for the latest developments in this ongoing story as they come available to the NETT News Team.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Breaking News: Scandal strikes Mini Pony cup, opening up the competition

This just into the NETT newsroom. Crazy Dave, previously the frontrunner and odds-on favorite to win the Mini Pony Cup competiton, has been disqualified from the competition amid a deepening scandal that has rocked both the athlete and the Mini Pony Cup to its core.

Early Tuesday morning around 2 a.m., police were called to Crazy Dave's home where they found him lying on the front lawn in single-digit temperatures with his fiancee Doris holding a bloddy running shoe above his head. Police investigators saidCrazy Dave had apparently been sneaking out in the middle of the night to run extra miles while his fiancee slept. But when Doris woke Tuesday morning to find him creeping in the front door all sweaty in his running tights, she allegedly lost her s--t and bashed Crazy Dave senseless. is reporting today that in addition to the "secret miles", Crazy Dave has also been running routinely with clubs other than NETT, including GBTC and the Parkway Running Club. also claims to have photos of the bloodied competitor, who is suing the website not to publish them.

While in police custody, a toxicology test found Crazy Dave tested positive for 13 banned and illegal substances including EPO, anabolic steroids, horse tranquilizers, Quaaludes, model glue, magic mushrooms and roughly 25 times the normal dose of caffeine intake for an adult male, which officially disqualified him from the Mini Pony Cup.

When asked by the NETT News Team to respond to the allegations, Crazy Dave simply replied "Get a job you blood-sucking parasites I hope you die in a painful sex accident" and spat repeatedly at reporters.

The scandal has not only shamed Crazy Dave, but it also breaks the competition in the Mini Pony Cup wide open with only two weeks left. With Crazy Dave out of the running, Frank and Jerry stand tied atop the leader board with 11 points, while Eri, Karyn MM and Chris Smith are all one point back with 10.

Frank 11
Jerry 11
Eri 10
Karyn MM 10
Chris Smith 10
Jack 9
Bogie 9
Martin 9
Jim D 8
Katherine 8
Chrissy 7
Mary 6

(Send any recent scoring updates to the NETT Newsroom at points are available in the track competition this weekend at the BU Mini Meets as well as in the snowshoe competition in coming weeks. All races must be completed by Dec. 31 to qualify.

Monday, December 14, 2009

NETT cobbles together patchwork teams for Assualt on Mt. Hood

Big big thanks go out to Frank and Tina and Kristen and Andy for showing up on game day for the Assault on Mt. Hood XC Race in Melrose, on a day when a slew of Mini Ponies opted to stay in the stables. And a special thanks to Jack's better half Jenn, for coming through in the clutch...we owe her big time! Here' Frank's report:

Despite being haunted by cancellations leading up to the race, NETT still managed to do well in the team competition at Mt Hood. Tina, NETT’s recruiter extradionaire, recruited Jack's better half Jenn Levatino for the women’s race as well as longtime trail runner Mike Menovich for the men’s race just minutes before the race. This was Mike’s first race in ages but with his help Andy, Frank and Mike secured 3rd place for the men. And Jenn likewise helped the women take 3rd. The awards were some seasonally inspired Nutcracker – pretty neat.""

Again, big thanks to these folks for coming out and representing NETT when Murphy's Law pretty much over-ran our team plans yet again. Tina for recruiting like a pro, Jenn for stepping up and Kristen and Andy for being rock-steady lately. At least this time Andy had to work for his beer!

For more pics, vist the race site here.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Big congrats to Marhsall and Jack

Huge congrats to Marshall Randolph on winning the Eastern New England Trail Race Series (ENTRS) at the age of 61 years old and Jack Burke for toughing it out head to head with Marshall to finish second overall.

While the "official" results of the series have not yet been posted, ENTRS officials have confirmed to the NETT news room that Marshall and Jack will be 1-2 in the stnadings and each will win their age groups.

It was a long slog for both these trail monsters, beginning way back in April at the Merrimack River Trail Race (Marshall was a spry 60 back then!) continuing all srping summer and fall until the final race this past weekend at Bogie's Fells Trail Race. They raced more than a dozen races each, everywhere from Northern New Hampshire to Southern Rhode Island. They braved a rain and wind storm at the Edaville race, both knowing that precious points were on the line.

Despite being locked in a heated battle over the past 8 months, these two guys showed their class throughout and ran the Fells race together (although Marhsall points out it was pure strategy on his part thinking if he got lost on the course Jack could squeek past, so keep your friends close and competitors closer!)

We'll do a longer interview with both of these guys here as soon as we can get them to sit still for five minutes (after that much racing around New England, these guys are due for a long winter's nap, but don't bet on it!) But for now, please join NETT in congratulating these two trail warriors for a job well done!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

NETT women defend title at Andover, men 3rd

The NETT Mini Ponyettes bravely defended their team title at the Andover Country Club XC Race today, while the men's team could only muster up a third-place team finish in a competitive field.

The ladies got the job done with an extremely low score of 13 in the race, outpacing five other women's teams. Kristen Hall led the charge in 23:11 over the 3.5(ish) mile course, finishing second in the female masters divison. From master to youth, it was Katherine De Zutter scoring next for the NETT women's team in 25:13, second in her age group. She was followed by Tina Wang (25:56), Karyn Miller-Medzon (26:53) and Chrissy Durden who somehow got shuffled into the men's category.

But not that the men were complaining about having Chrissy on their squad, as they could use all the help they could get. With the Central Mass Striders nabbing 2-3-4-5 in a heated men's race with CRC, it was tough sledding for NETT, who put their best foot forward for a third-place team finish. It came down to the Andover stalwarts for NETT, Paul Miller, Crazy Dave, Dave Mingori, Frank KJ and Toledo Joe the scoring five with Jim De Zutter toughing it out to be our fallback member. These are familiar names for NETT at Andover, as Paul, Dave and Joe were scoring members in the first-ever NETT race at Andover back in 2002, and Dave M and Frank KJ have certainly been regulars in recent years.

(The men's plaque is small, but the ladies assured us size doesn't really matter.)

Despite some construction (what else is new, right?), the slightly altered Andover course lived up to its reputation for rolling hills and the post-race celebration remains the best around. Did I mention the free beer? Didn't take Andy long to catch on!

Turkey Day Results include Marathon effort!

Well this Thanksgiving had the usual batch of race results for NETT members racing around in various Turkey Day races. Out in at the Stow Gobbler 5K it was Crazy Dave, Frank KJ, Toledo Joe and the three DZs (Jerry, Katherine and Jim De Zutter) ripping it up. The Miller-Medzon clan headed up to Andover and saw Daniel (21:10) and Noah (23:10) scorching the 5K while mom Eminem braved the crowds in the five miler (37:49). And I'm SURE there were plenty of other folks that had good performances on Thursday morning.

But there was one runner that outdid us all.

NETT newbie John Grainge ran the Atlanta Marathon in 3:15 on Thanksgiving Day to finish 41st overall! Wow, don't we all feel like whimps now! Big Congrats Gino....You da man!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Update on Mini Pony Cup

Here's an update on the Mini Pony Cup standings. Let me know if they look accurate. MiniPonyCup-fgk

Monday, November 23, 2009

Big Ben busts it out clean in Philly

Big congrats to Big Ben Winther for uncorking a very speedy 3:02 at the Philadelphia Marathon this weekend. Here's his always amusing report:

"I went out a little fast because Crazy wasn't there to tug the back of my shirt, 6:50ish, tried to hold back a little through thefirst 8, but, you know me, kept right at the pace, and was doing 6:40s into the half, as the half approached I passed a chick that had crapped herself, and I decided right then and there, there was no way I was going to lose to a woman covered in her own fecal matter. I ran for a while next to another young woman who was pretty snotty and obnoxious so she made the list too, but at least she was not covered in her own mess. She was being paced by a guy and kept talking shit about the people around her that they all obviously went out too fast and would never hit the times they were currently on pace for....I didn't like her, swore I'd beat her too. But at least she didn't stink to high heavens of pooh.

I got swept into a pack of guys at about 16 miles, and I went with them, notching it down to 6:30ish pace for a while, then we hit a very small hill, and I fell off hard. But for the record, at no point did I lose control of my bodily functions.

I dropped back to 7 min pace at 18 and just never recovered, eventually going as slow as 8:20 a couple miles. There wasn't a piano on my back, but a very good sized Casio keyboard. I tried to pick it up a bit when I began to thinkg I could get in under three hours, but my legs didn't have it. I was passed by the mad crapper at mile 23 in a blaze of excrement, and never caught that other douche. My calves strarted to cramp up at mile 24, probably should've pumped more fluids, but I was actually cold all day, as it was around 40 when I started, 50 when I finished, but hands were cold the whole time.

Final time by my watch, 3:02.05. Not a PR, but at the end of the day, I'll take a 3:02 with no poop over a 2:59 covered in my own crap any day."

Monday, November 16, 2009

NETT men chug through the Edaville Rail Run

It was the best of times it was the wettest of times. No.

You win some, you lose some, you get soaked at some. Uh uh.

When it rains it pours. And when it pours the wind blows. And when the wind and rain are both at their worst, NETT is usually running. Yeah, that's the one.

It was a wet and wild day for a few of the hearty Mini Ponies that braved the Edaville Rail Run, held Saturday in the midst of the remnants of Hurricane Ida. Weather aside, it was a fun, well organized race, a five-miler on a pancake flat course winding its way around cranberry bogs in Carver, Mass. Pretty much all dirt paths, so the rain made it a big sloppy.

NETT men showed pretty strong regults: Crazy Dave (second) Youngstah (sixth) and Marshall (35th) all won their age groups while Marshall and Jack Burke both piled more points onto their 1-2 places in the ENTRS.

NETT pal Jim DeSisto did extremely well also running only his second-ever race in 8-minute pace in blazing rain and wind.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Turns out we're all nuts!

It turns out that Chris Smith isn't the lunatic after all. The results of the latest NETT poll show that the overwhelming majority of respondents said "you guys are all twisted. Get some help." Of course, it begs the question, who among is responding saying we're all twisted, but is not so twisted? Let he who has not run two races in one weekend cast the first stone!
And be sure to take our latest poll on the Andover XC race!

Mary cracks top 10 in women's-only Maine Coast Half-Marathon

Well it was a weekend for the NETT kids to crack top 10 in competitive races. The same day Dave Molk was turning heads at the Stone Cat Marathon, Mary Smith was up in Maine, cracking the top 10 at the Maine Coast Half-Marathon for Women (and one lucky guy!).

Mary tells the NETT Newsroom the "One Lucky Guy was chosen through a lottery and he told me that he only found out that he had won Oct 18th. I ran for about 5 minutes with the Lucky Guy and chatted with him, but then he took off & I ran the majority of the race alone (passing people here & there). I almost caught back up to the Lucky Guy at the finish - if I had another 1/2 mile I would've gotten him. I tried my best to catch him in a sprint to the finish - but he just had more left in the tank. However, it's important to note that due to "chip timing" I actually beat the One Lucky Guy, and came in 10th out of about 850 runners. More importantly I beat one of my co-workers (who's a pretty good runner). The best part is that she had no idea I was gunning for her!!"

But true to the NETT code of ethics, Mary finished the race and then backtracked for about 1.5 miles to meet up with her friend to pace her into the finishas well. "That was my secret training for the day," she says.

Mary calls it a "a false flat" course because it seemed flat, but there were a lot of gradual grades plus it ran along the Maine Coast, so the wind was always hitting you in the face.

"It was a great day to run...perfect temperature, sunshine and ocean view."

Here's the link to the race website:

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Molk top 10 in debut marathon at Stone Cat

Big congrats to Dave Molk who finished 10th place at Stone Cat Trail Marathon, his first marathon ever! Dave had his sites on this race for a long time and definitely did his homework. At least once he did double-secret training on a long run (means he showed up to secret training having already run!) and it clearly paid off in his 3:44.

Dave says, "Yes, I rocked the Mini Ponies race top at Stone Cat. Unfortunately, it was pretty cold, so it remained under my jacket, but it was there. I had a blast and am stoked with my 10th place finish, as I didn't really know what I was doing (other than my predominant race strategy of 'don't twist or break anything'). Karen and Dima were both looking good when I left."

Karen Ringheiser dropped down to the marathon and did her third (I think--I have lost track) marathon this fall!.

Dima Feinhaus completed the 50 mile and says "not much to report."I felt pretty beaten up after 3-4 miles. Just to much heavy duty stuff in the last month I guess. 15 min behind last year schedule after 25 miles, but quickly deteriorating. Regrouped, stopped competing and turned it into an endurance training. Second 25 run evenly but slow. Everyone and their grandmother passed me. I finished 40th in 9:20. This is always a great event though. Very well organized. There were a bunch of mountain bikers insisted on using same trails. Scary. The most amazing part of my race was when I came across a girl I was trading places with from 33 to 44. She got a vision problem during the race but wanted to finish any way. She was stumbling. Loosing the trail. Checking the path with her hands And falling down. "

Monday, November 02, 2009

Women take 2nd place team at Genesis Battlegreen race

Three women run the Genesis Battle Green race and all three PRed at the 12K distance. Of course none of them KNEW they'd be running 12K.

Apparently it was a weekend for course mishaps, as the NETT team of Tina Wang, Deb Robertson and Chrissy Bures (yes, Bures) got a little "secret racing" distance in on their way to the second place team overall.


Drama, intrigue at the Busa Bushwhack

Well, for the NETTers looking to experience the true drama and intrigue that trail running has to offer, they found it at this year's Busa Bushwhack in Framingham on Sunday. This is always a special race, because it honors a true running legend, Rich Busa. But this year was particularly special because it came only a day after Rich's 80th birthday. As always, he was the consumate host, greeting runners with a smile, a pat on the back and encouraging words.

Right from the start, there was drama at this year's Bushwhack. While we all stood and chatted at the starting line until well past 9 a.m., someone pointed out--Did it still start at the same spot? Did we miss the start? No, we were early it turns out. The footing on the course was particularly challenging with so many leaves and acorns this year. There were definitely more spills than normal for a course of this difficulty.

But there was even more drama! Due to a couple slight miscues by some overwhelmed course marshals, a good number of runners were sent off-course in this race, including many of the NETT congingent. Nonethless, the Ponies persevered and showed up all over the results in both the 10 and 5 mile races.

Here's a rundown:

In the 10 miler:
6 153 Hannon Dave West Roxbury 38 1:06:35 6:40:00 M30-39 5
12 67 Smith Christopher Woburn 43 1:11:22 7:08:00 M40-49 1
31 163 Feinhaus Dima Newton 46 1:15:44 7:34:00 M40-49 10
33 88 Verter Erol Somerville 24 1:15:56 7:36:00 M20-29 7
37 69 Randolph Marshall Wellesley 61 1:17:16 7:44:00 M60-69 1
45 189 Cyrulik Adrienne Belmont 35 1:19:36 7:58:00 F30-39 3
86 111 Burke John Cambridge 43 1:31:53 9:11:00 M40-49 25

And in the 5.3 miler:
17 356 DeZutter Katherine Shrewsbury 14 0:43:10 8:09:00 F0-19 1
71 353 DeZutter Jim Shrewsbury 47 0:57:25 10:50:00 M40-49 7

Of particular note at the Bushwhack:
-In his first long trail race, Eri Verter continued to prove he can pretty much handle whatever we can throw at him with a cool head.
-Kathereine De Zutter continues to shoot up the results page (she was 35th at this race a year ago, 17th this year in a more competitive field!) And her experience is growing as well, saying she knew when a course marshall tried to direct her to the 10-miler. This kid's trophy closest is growing faster than Crazy Dave's list of PWs!
-Marshall's daughter, Hannah, and her friend also brought the exuberence of youth to the race, dealing with unique race conditions easily, finishing in 47:38. All the while expressing deep concerns about the race's impact on the area's insect population (where's George??)

All in all, a fun day at a great race with good company. And of course, the chance to honor the "Johnny Kelley of Trail Running" as one person put it yesterday.

Happy Birthday Richie!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Breaking News: Adrienne wins Groton Town Forrest Trail Race

While official results aren't posted yet, the NETT newsroom is abuzz today with the news that Adrienne Cyrulik won the women's division at the Groton Town Forest Trail Race.

In an exclusive interview, Adrienne told NETT news: "Because all the good runners were elsewhere, I won the woman's race today! I didn't even feel that great which makes it even more surprising. I was tripping a lot and went flying once. The good thing is that compared to my 2007 race, I ran 2 min, 15 sec faster overall for a time of 1:16:15."

Of course Marhsall Randolph and Jack Burke were there racking up points in the ENTRS. Getting down to crunch time and looks like they're both afraid to give up any potential points!

Stone Tower 15K: The Battle of the Running Lunatics

What happens when a guy who recently ran two marathons in a week race against another guy who recently pulled a hamstring, ran a marathon (BONKS) and runs a XC in a week? Well they go 1-2 in the Stone Tower 15K Trail Race this weekend, that's what.

NETTers Chris Smith and Paul Young--who we're all agreed should both be committed for their running pursuits of late--matched up for one last hurrah at Lynn Woods this weekend and here's how it played out.

"We started out at a comfortable pace," Chris says (most of us know Chris has never started at a "comfortable pace" in his life, right?) "Paul and I were swapping off the lead. I pushed on a couple of the climbs but there was no loosing that pesky Paul. I was first to the Under Cliff single track and Paul was stuck behind me as my pace slowed. Once out of the single track and back on the carriage road Paul was off like a scalded rabbit. The gap opened so fast I thought he may have taken a wrong turn. I came across the parking lot to the finish and there he was, drat. I paid those course marshals good money! grrr."

Paul reports that "Chris's account of the race is accurate. We both took turns at the front in the early miles. At around 37-40mins Chris had opened up a good gap on me. Thankfully there is more technical single track in during the second half and I was able to reel him in. The two sections of downhill running at the end played into my strength but I was seriously in the hurt zone for the last 3-4 minutes of running and never would have run as fast without Chirs out there pushing me. Great race put on by a group of very nice people."

This was the umpteenth time these two master blasters matched up in Lynn Woods this year, with pretty mixed results. Nice to know two guys can compete that often against each other and still fling more compliments around than mud! Class acts, both for sure.

But we still think they should both be put in a state institution.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

NETT finishes the multisport year in style at Wrentham Duathlon

It was a great way to cap off the multisport season today at Wrentham Duathlon. More pics and stories to come, but FULL RESULTS are as follows:
Jerry 4th overall in 58:50
Frank KJ 8th in 1:00:39
Crazy Dave 14th in 1:03:12
Phil De Z in 1:20
And in the relay, father-daughter duo of Jim and Katherine finished 3rd in 1:07!

After the race, in a small private ceremony, NETT was awarded its winnings for its third place finish in the FIRM race series, which will be shared at an upcoming social event (see the Meetup page for details). Special congrats to those that won or ranked in their age-groups in the series. We really did well.(Insert lyrics to Danish national anthem here.)


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Video interview with Rich Busa

Some real gems here from Richie. Inspiration for both experienced runners and newbies alike. Courtesy of Greater Framingham Running Club.

BUSA even has his own WIKIPEDIA ENTRY!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

NETT women rise over adversity at Baystate Marathon

Huge congrats to the NETT women's team for becoming the first NETT team to score in a USATF-NE Championship road race this weekend at the Baystate Marathon in Lowell. And they did in perhaps the worst conditions imaginable for an October marathon.

Karyn Miller-Medzon led the charge with a PR performace of 3:54, followed closely by Deb Robertson in 3:57 and Chrissy Durden running a very strong 4:02.

And in the "NETTers scoring for other teams" category, the results were just as impressive: Dima Feinhaus (scoring for CSU) ran out of his mind in 2:54 (PR I believe?) with CSU teammate Marhall Randolph clocking a 3:28 (wins the 60-plus age group--yawn). And Karen Ringheiser in her always solid manner clocked a 3:37 for the BAA women's team.

Keep in mind this was in a rainy, windy cold day. To give you a sense of it, here's Karyn MM's report, which includes a description of her now usual mid-race migraine:

"Well...the weather was every bit as bad as predicted.

That said, I actually had a great race--my best marathon yet. For the first five miles, it was cloudy and a little drizzly and only slightly cold. After 5 miles, that changed--the wind and rain picked up and it was fairly miserable. Very hard to stay dry...and later...impossible. Still...things seemed to be going fine, and then at mile 8 I realized that I was having a migraine. Started seeing flashing lights, and my vision narrowed to a small tunnel. I figured I would just stay in until I was completely blind, or in such bad pain that I couldn't go on. I popped 3 motrin and hoped for the best. By mile 11 my sight was clearing and instead of crushing pain, I felt only slight I continued. I soon forgot about it altogether. I got to the half where I was expecting to find Mary...but alas, she wasn't there. I pondered that for a few miles, and then, by mile 17, I realized that I felt GREAT. I just wasn't tired! So I sped up a little and just ticked off the miles. Around that time a friendly Vietnamese guy who could barely speak English was running with me, and he was a riot. i didn't have the energy to entertain him, so he simply entertained me, and stayed with me until the end.

Paul Young was wonderful, handing me a much-appreciated banana at mile 20. Saw him twice actually. So nice to see a familiar face through the downpour. For the last 5 miles, when the rain was really coming down, my new friend and I were able to speed up and passed about 40 runners. Just a great feeling. I ran into the stadium feeling strong, and finished in 3:53. I needed a 4:00 to qualify for Boston, so I had minutes to spare! Couldn't wait to get out of my wet clothes which by that time weighed about 20 pounds. Deb finished only 3 minutes later in 3:56 and Chrissy wasn't far behind in 4:01, which was also her marathon PR. Finally, I found Mary....who, with Martin, had miscalculated where the half was going to be...and ended up running much of the course looking for us. Thanks Mary and Martin! Ron and Justine and Paul were a great (and soggy) support team on the sidelines."

The night before the race, NETT had a team dinner at the Chateau in Waltham, and not only prepped for the race, but celebrated Chrissy and Martin's great news (they got hitched on the sly a couple weeks back!!).

Congrats to all!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The last of my running idols...

We have all had our idols when it comes to sports. Heck, that's part of the fun. When I was a youngster, I idolized hockey players like Terry O'Reilly, Stan Jonathan and..the great...Robert Gordon Orr. Great players, but more importantly, tough players who clearly loved the game more than air and set a good example.

As I got older and into running my idols ran along the same lines--it was guys like Alberto Salazar for his mighty heroics on the Boston course and Bob Kennedy for his refusal to use the excuse that the Kenyans were simply too good.

But as you get older you tend to rely less on idols and more on your own abilities and training. But when it comes to running, I still have one idol that stands head and shoulders above the rest. For his attitude as much as his ability. For being there with a handshake and a smile every time I see him. For turning 80 years young this month and maintaining a racing schedule that would make most of us shudder.

My running idol is.....CLICK HERE to find out who Dave's idol is

Monday, October 12, 2009

NETT teams 3rd at Wayland XC Race

It was a solid showing for the NETT Mini-Ponies at the Wayland XC Race this weekend, with both the men's and women's teams taking 3rd place in their divisions.

See the results here

The women's team was a study in contrats with three masters' one sub-master and a very speedy 14-year old making the team of five. Kristin Hall led the way for the Ponyettes running a very solid 20:44 for the rugged 5K course, good for second master. Wendy Johnecheck was next for NETT in 21:57, followed by Karen Ringheiser on a tuneup for Baystate in 22:10. Katherine De Zutter had a week off from high school racing and skated right along to a 22:27 clocking (good for 2nd in her age group)and Karyn MM finished the scoring with a sub-24 effort. Great work ladies!

On the men's side, Chris Smith gets the Medal of Honor for coming out and scoring as our fourth runner only 24 hours after finishing the Hartford Marathon! Owwwwch...But in a addition to Chris' gutsy run, NETT newcomer Barry Phelps did a fantastic job and was our second man in 17:46. Martin Bures was just a few ticks behind Barry, while Andy Hall put in a very strong effort to finish as fifth scorer in 19:35. And we even had a great saftey net (or is it "NETT"?) in the form of Janos Mako (19:42), Eri Verter (20:20) and Jim De Zuttter out on the course. And even though he runs for CSU, we all have a soft spot for Marshall Randolph, who continues to defy the laws of physics winning the 60+ age group handily.

And in the "NETT stars of the future" category, Noah Miller-Medzon kicked butt in the 3K, cranking out a 12:03, good for 7th place in his division. For the mathematically challenged, that's a 6:27 pace, which would put him in the top 50 of the adult race! Clock is ticking--we only have so much time before this kid just starts thrashing us all in open races. Also along those lines, Dima F's two sons did a great job out on the course as well.

As always, race director Eric Bucher puts on a great event for kids and adults alike--open to all, it's a great way for folks to get introduced to cross country running. Thanks to our cheering section of Doris, Anthony and Thomas out on the course.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Two MiniPonies top the ENTRS standings

Very quietly, two members of the NETT "family" have climbed their way to the top of the Eastern New England Trail Race series. Marshall Randolph, the youngest 60-year old any of us will ever know, is currently the points leader in the series. And Jack Burke is just below Marshall sitting solidly in second place.

Both did the Houghton's Pond trail race last weekend, with Marshall finishing 12th overall and Jack notching a 31st place. The grueling schedule of the series has two races this weekend, one up in New London, NH and the other is Wayland XC race.

Check the standings in the Eastern New England Trail Race Series here.

Let's do our best to help these two guys finish the series in 1-2!!

Sunday, October 04, 2009

MiniPonies get whipped at Topsfield

Well, at least we have our sense of humor.

It was a rough day on the race course for the NETT crew at the Topsfield XC Race, but at the end of it all, we stood by what we do best--had a good time running with good company and did our best.

The women's team was one short due to a faulty alarm clock, and despite the race director assuring us we could use a ghost runner to round out the five scorers, it turned out not to be the case. But big kudos the Ponyettes for putting in some gutsy runs. Adrienne led the charge and cracked the top 20 in 21:45 (equal as last year's time in sloppier conditions!). Mary was just a bit back in 22:12, newcomer Jess Walden ran strong in 23:40 and Tina clocked a solid 24:01 (beating last year's time!).

On the men's side, the NETT squad finished 6th place with Crazy Dave (26th in 29:17), Ben Gray (33rd in 30:17), Frank KJ (43rd in 32:20), Big Ben (44th in 32:33), newbie John Grainge (48th in 33:05). Unfortunately, Chris Smith got injured, but still managed to stagger into the finish in a gutsy run.

While most of us were suffering away in the back of the pack, it was really great to hear the other NETTers cheering us on and shouting encouragement.

After the race, we headed off to drown the sorrows in fried clams and beer at Woodmans, where we had a lot of laughs and planned our Topsfield strategy for next year (we all sleep in!).

Extra special thanks to our pep squad Youngstah, Dustin, Cindy and Elsa-Bean.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Dave Mingori anchors winning team at Greenway Challenge

Dave Mingori sent in a great report from the Greenway Challenge, a multisport relay event. Dave's team. Great Canadian, has won it several times and this year was put to the test. Here's his report:

This year's race started well (my friend Chris put down 5:18's for the opening 4.25 mile leg) and we were in 2nd. The first place team had a great runner but other than that wasn't a concern. Then it all fell apart as on the 1st bike leg, which was 1/2 on, 1/2 off road, our biker flatted and crashed on a rocky section. Luckily he finished but not only lost our lead but came in almost 10 minutes out of 1st (and I think only 12th overall)

From there it was just pick off as many as possible. Made up 4 places and about a minute on the 1st paddle section. Next was a road bike section and when our biker came in 3rd, now less than 6 minutes back I began to think it just might be possible if I can pull one out of my a** on the middle run (Chris was planning on doubling back for the anchor). So I hammered it, somehow managing very close to 5:40's for the 4.7 mile leg, making up another 1:10.

Then it got interesting again. Mark took off for the 2nd paddle and Chris and I headed for the last run start. We got stuck in traffic and show up with probably only 10-12 minutes to spare. Chris starts warming up and 5 minutes later comes back to the car and tells me he can't run, that his HR is staying really elevated and he's feeling very light headed. Of course my first concern is if he needs medical attention. Luckily Deb was driving around with us for the day and she agreed to watch over Chris. Now I'm running again, on short rest and probably have less than 5 minutes. First place team takes off and the runner looks okay, but nothing great. By the way he looked, I didn't think he'd manage much under 6:15's. Suddenly Mark shows up and he took back another 3 minutes and I'm only 1:30 back. Damn, if I can put sub 6's we've got a chance!

Luckily I'd run the course the prior weekend so knew where to push it and that there was a BIG 1/2 mile hill just after 2 miles. I turned the corner to start the hill and could just see the 1st place guy about 2/3 up the hill. I really pushed the hill, then let up a bit and used a short downhill to recover. With just under a mile to go (it was 4.2 miles) I made another big move on a sustained downhill, passing the guy and just going flat out. If he wanted to go with me, he was gonna hurt just as much as I was! He didn't respond, then I found yet another gear for the final 1/4 mile and we won by 38 seconds and I managed 5:52's (which felt like 5:30's!)

Great job Dave! Final results are posted here.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

NETT finishes third in FIRM Grand Prix!!!

Great news from Frank on the FIRM Grand Prix final standings:

New England Track & Trail had tremendous success in the 2009 FIRM Grand Prix Series. For a relatively small team we scored often and high putting us in 3rd place overall. We had 21 mini ponies participate in at least one race.

In each race in the FIRM Grand Prix points are awarded within each category as follows: 1st place 8 points, 2nd place 5 points, 3rd place 3 points, 4th place 2 points, and 5th place 1 point. Across the 10 GP races we had 40 entries and scored a total of 248 points. The maximum potential points we could have scored is 293 points resulting in a “utility rate” close to 85% - that is an incredible achievement that truly shows the quality of NETT. In fact every single member who entered a race scored points.

This year the "next generation" of NETT emerged on the scene and the 5 teenagers showed lots of talent. Katherine was perfect in her 4 races adding up 32 points in the spring. Jim III, Daniel, Noah and Nicholas all scored in relay teams at Wrentham and Webster. At Webster Crazy Dave crashed the Kids relay and did the bike leg in gut wrenching style when Jim III had to opt out.

Eri, Karyn, Martin and Jim were the newcomers on the multisport scene. Eri surprised us all by showing that he's a fantastic swimmer and great bikeer in addition to being a strong runner - and no wetsuit for this powerhouse. Karyn simply surprised everyone on at the beach in Webster by popping out the water like a submarine; and in both races she used her fast run to pass a multitude of people in her age-group.

Martin was a great success story this year, getting better for each race he did this season putting down some amazing swim and run splits. The other guys in his age group better start getting used to see the NETT coyote pull away from them in that final leg.

And then there is Jim--our Clydesdale monster swimmer and cyclist; the guy looks like a low-flying missile on the bike.

On the relay side Big Al, Ali and Martin truly showed the colors at the FIRMMan race by winning in convincing style. And Big Al, Bruce and Dave won the Old Colony in equally impressive style. Al has done many relays with us over the years so thanks again for coming out and giving it all on those swim legs.

And finally there are the multisport veterans. Although unrelated to the FIRM GP the biggest achievement no doubt goes to Jerry who completed his first Ironman race – congratulations. Jerry still found time to score in 3 FIRM GP races as well and to no surprise won his age-group each time. Tina smartly built up her training and came out and with two strong performances in August and September. Bayside was Tina’s first ever ocean swim.

Lastly, there were the old pros Paul, Joe and Frank in the M40-44 that all did very well in their races. At the TDD triathlon we for once got our calendars synchronized so that we could race against each other. We used that opportunity to sweep the podium by taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in our age-group.

In the individual age-group standings the quality came through as well. We have 5 people winning their age-group in the series (Jerry, Jim, Katherine, Eri and Frank), two second places (Karyn and Martin), one third place (Paul), one 4th (Tina), one 5th (Chelsea) and one 7th (Joe) place finishes. Last year FIRM had the Grand Prix ceremony at the Wrentham Halloween Duathlon with awards to teams and age-group winners so you may want to consider blocking October 25 in your calendar.

All details about the FIRM Grand Prix at
Congratulations to everyone for who made 2009 a stellar year for New England Track and Trail.

Editor's Note: A VERY special thanks to Frank KJ who did a lot of organizing to get our teams lined up and did a LOT of fact-checking on the scoring to make sure we got credit for all our efforts in this series. We're all very busy people and this is a 100% volunteer organization, and it takes folks like this to make these things happen, so thanks Frank.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Wings takes top 20 finish at Reach the Beach Relay

Short story is with a team of 5 women and 7 men, most over 40, the NETT-heavey WINGS Reach the Beach team finished 20th overall in 24:15 (an average pace of 7:01 for the entire 210 miles) and sixth in the men's open--which is what we qualified as since we weren't 6 and 6. By comparison, our time last year was 25:36:35 (a full hour and 20 minutes longer!)
It was another tremendous experience. Here's the abbreviated version:

-Martin's heroic effort with a toe the size of a cucumber
-Crazy Dave's final leg, where he passed a full 20-percent of the field
-Jeanette's kleptomania
-Jean Dany's brilliant quote: "I waited for the pain, but it never came."
-Eri running circles around the parking lot while van 1 watched
-And of course our all-around great team-ness.
-The bear!

More details to come later but Crazy Dave is out of town so gotta keep it short. Results Posted here

Saturday, September 19, 2009

NETT Sweeps M40-44 at TDD Triathlon

Another very encouraging update on the mutlisport front from Frank KJ:

TDD Triathlon was the last FIRM Grand Prix race and NETT had 5 people at the start line. Paul, Joe and Frank battled it out in the M40-44 while Jim and Tina were in their respective age groups.

An extremely short 300m swim with two 90 degree turns resulted in the swim leg being a whirlpool and everyone being hit and kicked. In the M40-44 Joe managed to find the perfect line and got out the water first, followed by Paul (yes you read correctly) and Frank right behind. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw Paul right in front me running in to T1. Afterwards Joe and I agreed that we would like to see the aerial footage of the swim as we have suspicion Paul cut the swim course short (just kidding – nice job on the swim Superman).

(Editor's note: Paul responds to Frank's remarks by saying "Let it be noted that Frank is a *way* better swimmer than me and would trounce me in any real swimming race. The problem was there were loads of swimmers even worse than me and a crowded course. I was 50% slower than the fastest guys (given the run to the timing mat out of the water) which is par for the course for me these days. Frank must have found himself in worst positions than me...He and Joe called it right pre-swim "a mosh pit".)

The bike leg is very hilly which suited Paul so well that he quickly moved away from me (I naively tried to hang with Paul for as long as possible – that was 0.5 miles) and later also passed Joe.
The run leg is pretty much 1.5 mile uphill and then 1.5 mile downhill. Paul used his usual strong run to secure 3rd place overall. And I used whatever I had left in the tank to chase down Joe and finish a few strides ahead of him. End result was that we ended up sweeping the podium spots in the M40-44. How is that for showing off the NETT colors?

Jim was as always flying fast through the swim and bike leg – so fast that he was first Clydesdale coming into T2. The hilly run put its toll on Jim though and he had to let one guy slip by him on the run. But with the points earned today Jim moves into 1st place in the GP Clydesdale division. Congratulations.

And finally there was Tina who used her strong run leg to pass a ton of people in her age-group on the run – both uphill and downhill. Tina finished around 5th in her age-group.

Results on the FIRM SITE HERE (Tina's time not correct - she did around 1:14)

I will summarize the success of NETT in the FIRM Grand Prix series in a separate posting. One thing is for sure –we have had great success so congratulation to everyone who raced. We will have a celebration party later in the fall.

Monday, September 14, 2009

MiniPony Cup heats up

Folks, here's the latest update on the Mini Pony Cup based on the replies I've gotten. Want in? It's not too late. Email one race for each category you have completed to CrazyDave to be included.

Mini Pony Cup

NETT shines at FIRMMAN

Great results from the FIRM MAN half-iron triathlon this weekend. Here's Frank KJ's report:

"The male relay team did their job and finished 1st well ahead of everyone else. Al lead off with a very fast swim, Ali followed through on the bike, Martin ran down what may have been left on the course - and posted the fastest run split of the day in the progress. Results posted here.

Jim De Zutter did the Aquabike and shaved 6 minutes off his last half-ironman bike split. That on a course that was quite windy and due to the rain saw 50+ flats on the day! Frank did the whole thing, finishing 20th overall and 9th in the M40-44; apparently everyone but Paul and Joe showed up in my age-group today. Great ocean swim, solid bike split and a rough 4 minute mid-way in the run leg where I overheated and had to walk and drink. But all in all another great race in Narragansett. Results posted here.

We scored another 18 points in the Grand Prix series. More to follow on that later in the week..."

Thanks Frank. And in less impressive NETT multisport news, Crazy Dave took his life and the life of 150 other competitors in his hands and faked his way through the Hale Kids 2 Camp off-road triathlon on Sunday. Anyone who's seen this guy on a mountain bike knows the risk to all involved, but thankfully there was no bloodshed. A review of Dave's splits are pretty comical: 58th out of the water and 38th off the bike and a winning run split all add up to an 11th place finish.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Update on Mini Pony Cup

Well the response to the Mini Pony Cup has been lackluster to say the least. But as of right now we have four competitors: Crazy Dave, Frank KJ, Karyn MM and Jennifer Shultis. I won't even give an update on the points right now, but it's still pretty close, so it's anyone's game.

You want in? All you have to do is send Dave the name of races you finished--don't even need what place or time--just name of the race--in any of the following categories:

Road race (1/2 marathon and under)
Road Race (over 1/2 marathon)
Track race any distance
XC race
Team XC race
Team relay event, any
Snowshoe race
Trail race (under 1/2 marathon)
Trail race (1/2m or over)
Adventure race
Triathon (under 1/2 iron)
Cycling road race
Cyclocross/Mtn Bike Race
Triathlon (1/2 iron or over)
Volunteer at a race
Direct a race
Host a social event for NETT
OTHER (Make a suggestion and the judges will consider it).

Monday, September 07, 2009

Jerry takes 3rd at Plymouth Ironman triathlon

HUUUGGGEEE congrats to Jerry De Zutter who finished third in the Iron Distance Triathlon at Plymouth Rock yesterday in a staggering 10:12:55 (adjusted time for start in wave two). It was Jerry's first Ironman and truly inspiring to watch.

Jerry spent months building up to this effort and on race day, stuck to his game plan and competed smart, snaking his way up through the field throughout the race. For a first-time Ironman, it was a very smart race, but not surprising to those of us that know Jerry's training and racing tactics.

Jerry was certainly well supported by friends, family and teammates out on the course as well. In addition to his wife Jennifer and kids those out there cheering him on were his dad, Jim, brothers Phil and Jim, Frank and Tina, Joe Hardin, Paul Young, Paul, Candance and Alex (and newest NETTer, Theo!), Crazy Dave, Bruce Goode and I'm sure there were more. It certainly says a lot about a guy that can get that many people to wake up early get down to Plymouth and cheer him on.

Also, big big congrats to NETT's adventure race queen Jennifer Shultis who was the fifth woman overall in 12:0. And NETT pal Pat Dwyer finished 6th in the aqua bike competition (just swim and bike). FULL RESULTS HERE

Heading into the race last week, Jerry was quick to point out that getting in shape for an Ironman is not easy to do but is made easier with good training partners. "I couldn't have gotten to this point in my build-up to the IM without you guys, my fellow NETTers. The best part of NETT is that we are never lacking for great training partners. I am always psyched when I'm heading to a workout with teammates (and assoc.) since I know we're going to have some laughs, maybe a little light ribbing, trade training and racing war stories AND get a workout in. This makes putting in the training so much more enjoyable. Case in point, do you think I would have been trudging up and down Beacon Hill by myself in the dark in the dead of winter? Everyone is out there training and working hard towards their own goals, but I sure have benefited greatly from the fitness environment we've created on NETT. As I learned a while back, good training partners are hard to find and so when you've found some you make the effort to keep them together. That's got nothing to do with paying 'dues'."Afterwards, it was the usual NETT feast to celebrate the success!