Monday, January 21, 2008

Fifth Annual SOFA 50 Kilometer

The Rogue River and trail head parking from the Graves Creek Bridge.

When you are confronted with the word "sofa" one often conjures up images of a soft piece of furniture that one can recline upon. But here in the Rogue Valley of Southern Oregon, runners have brought a new meaning to the word "SOFA". Southern Oregon Fat Ass...a full 50 kilometers of it...roughly 31 miles for those that don't know their conversions.

So, what exactly is a Fat Ass? Truth be told, there's nothing really exact about it. Fat Asses or FA's is the name given to a series of low key runs that are frequented by runners. The phrase "No Fees, No Awards, No Aid, No Wimps" describes the run to a tee. FA's are free to enter and are put on by other runners who usually run the unorganized event as well. Since it's really not an organized race, there is no guarantee of anything other than a course to run (maps may or may not be included), and don't expect course markings or aid out on the course. It's a good way to shed unwanted holiday pounds and prep your body for the upcoming spring racing season. FA's occur all over the world during the winter months. Heck, there are four to choose from here in Oregon alone.

The SOFA 50K begins at the Graves Creek Boat Launch along the lower end of the Wild and Scenic Rogue River. The trail the SOFA course follows can eventually be taken along the river for 40 miles to the village of Agness, OR. SOFA runners, however, ran an out and back course, distances travelled by runners ranged from 54 kilometers to 10 miles. In total, 31 runners (and many doggies) showed up for this year's non-event, breaking the attendance record of 27 set two years ago.
The Lower Rogue River Trail Head at Graves Creek.

A group shot of some hardy souls...

Here's a list of those who showed, how far they ran and how fast they did it. As you can see, even the results follow suit with the Fat Ass theme...lots of inclusive evidence.

Distance Name City Time
54k Mark Humphreys Eugene 6:02
54k John Price Ashland 6:09
54k Rob Cain Ashland 6:09
50k Eric Poole Ashland 4:39
50k Ian Torrence Ashland 4:41
50k Erik Skaggs Ashland 4:41
50k Jenn Shelton Bend 4:41
50k Chris Rennaker Talent 4:56
50k Sean Meissner Sisters 5:21
50k Chris Askew Bend 5:34
50k Darla Brader Bend 5:35
50k Ken Ward Corvallis 6:09
50k Kelly Woodke Eugene 6:34
50k Ben Benjamin Ashland 7:15
50k Colleen O'Malley Medford NA
50k Carin Humphreys Grants Pass NA
24 miles Julie Peterson Ashland 6:00
24 miles Maura Schwartz Madras NA
24 miles Stan Nowakowski Madras NA
20 miles Ric Sayre Ashland 3:28
20 miles Clayton Gillette Medford 3:50
18.2 miles Teresa Hogan Medford NA
18 miles Mel Bailey Ashland 4:20
16 miles Dana Bandy Ashland 3:15
16 miles Tom Ahle Ashland 3:25
15 miles Tom Pelsor Yreka 4:11
10 miles Tim Turk Ashland 2:01
10 miles Annie Crispino-Taylor Ashland 2:01
??? Doug Naverson Jacksonville 3:00
??? Brad Putnam Coburg 6:07
??? Clem LaCava Corvallis 6:29

Kudos to Race Director Tim Turk for organizing such a great non-event and supplying the where with all to be silly runners and the feast after such silliness.

A sample of the treats that awaited runners upon their return.


Maria Rose said...

I wish I didn't have to work, it is so beautiful out there!
It is always great to see so many ladies participating, will we see their faces at the group runs? I hope, I hope :)

Chris said...

Yes, people. Now that the sun is staying out longer we want to see more of you on the group runs!

I have to mention the dead black bear we encountered along the Rogue River Trail on Saturday. It is one of the strangest things I have ever seen on a trail run. That, and seeing Abbey (Hal's dog) down some Clif Shots.

We'll have to run to the coast this summer.

Augusta said...

Way to go! 4:56, you are an inspiration to me. I checked out the photo, too, and you grew a beard! Looks good :)

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