Dave Herbert’s Debut Boilermaker Race Report

I had heard there would be a lot of people at the 2019 Boilermaker, but nothing prepared me for the actuality of it all. I’m a small town kind of person, this was very much out of my realm! From the expo on Saturday, to the start line Sunday morning, crowds, and nerves, were high. As I did some random stretching outside of our corrals, my anxiety about the task at hand grew.

Fortunately, I managed to come in contact with the great contingent of Road Kill members who decided to take on the legendary event. This lessened my tension greatly, surrounded by some great people, just having fun. Time ticked on as the start loomed near. A delay, some friendly banter, and a team cheer later, we were off! The first 5k went by very quickly. The crowd, and support on the course was unlike anything I’d ever imagined. Signs, bands, excessive water stops, the energy on the course was palpable. Despite a decent amount of uphill running (more gradual than anything), I was ahead of where I planned to be pace wise.

The author leading the RKR contingent through the streets of Utica

The second 5k was the breath of fresh air I had been waiting for. The uphills ceased, and the downhills took their turn! Gravity was not only on our side, but the crowd, as well! They cheered us on as we continued to grind, getting ever closer to the post race party. It was around 4 miles that I found another runner, who was interested in working together to move up. We traded the lead a few times, breaking the wind for one another. He eventually dropped me (soon after 10k), but I’m very grateful that we got to help each other for a while.

New member Matt Palmer on his way to a 58-minute finish

The last 5k, while elevation friendly, was rough for me. I had passed the 10k mark a mere ~20 seconds slower than my flat out personal best. My legs stopped firing as quickly as they had 6.2 miles before, and I was wondering if I had written checks my body couldn’t cash. Mentally, I just needed to make it to the eighth mile. I figured after that, any kind of crash wouldn’t be too bad. Mile 8 came, and went. Before I knew it, the ninth mile reared it’s glorious head. My legs found new life, as I made a sad attempt at a kick to get through the finish line.

The Matt brigade (and Kraig’s side) running tough!

Despite not regrouping with my teammates after the race, I had nothing to regret on that day. I went out harder than I felt I should, and it paid off (in this particular case!). The team as a whole had a stellar showing, and enjoyed some beer, and glory after their races! The Boilermaker is a staple race in not only New York, but the country as a whole. It’s a bucket list race that I feel all runners should experience, at least once in their lives. Great showing, Roadkill! On to the next one! For Beer, and Glory, Dave

Kraig’s wife Chelsea won wife of the year for walking nearly 3 miles through the streets of Utica to meet the racers at the finish
Most of the squad after the race

Matt’s note: Roadkill Racing had a great contingent with lots of stellar performances on Sunday! Here are the results I know about:

Dave Herbert – 54:16
Matt Palmer – 58:05
Matt Roberts – 58:15
Kraig Connor – 1:02:15|
Ryan Sullivan – 1:02:26
Dan Sackett – 1:11:58
Lindsay Rynders – 1:17:04
Davida Graham – 1:31:40

Kenny’s Seneca7 Recap

Living in Pittsburgh now, I’ve unfortunately been mostly absent from Roadkill events and shenanigans over the past two years. However, I saw a Facebook post by Lindsay in December saying that she was looking for “fast men” to fill out the Seneca7 team. I saw how much fun the team had last year, and I had never gotten to jump in on a relay like this. It was a great opportunity to see old friends while chasing everyone around a lake.

Super stoked to start running in the cold!

Fast forward a few months to April 28th, and Roadkill had a formidable team of George, Ashlie, Marie, John/Lindsay’s Dad/Mr. Rynders, Chad, Lindsay, and myself for the 77.7 mile journey around Seneca Lake. We came into the day slightly battered (Marie having run the 18 mile Rally Round the Valley the day before, George and Ashlie deep in the meat of their own marathon training, and Lindsay and I still recovering from the Boston Marathon). However, we were ready to race for beer and glory and ice cream and effort and everything that represents the Roadkill way. The day started out chilly and breezy in Geneva, but that didn’t stop George from sneaking his short orange shorts that Ashlie REFUSED to let him wear. Soon enough, 9 o’clock rolled around, and George was on his way, starting towards the back so he could get a headstart on roadkills early (roadkill, in this sense, meaning any runner you pass in your travels).

The official SPLATmobile!

The race has twenty-one legs, with each team member running three legs of varying distances, in the same order. I was given the seventh leg, with George, Marie, John, Lindsay, Chad, and Ashlie preceding me. After George set off, we hung our Brazilian flag (the official mark of a “passing” vehicle) and Roadkill banner off of the Splatmobile and bolted south. The first few checkpoints were mostly empty; the earlier-starting teams were already long gone, and it was mostly a race for the best parking to make a quick escape. Towards the end of the first seven legs, however, we started to come up upon some earlier teams and gaining roadkills. (The Splatmobile passengers had a side-competition to make the greatest number of dad jokes for the day, and with a grand total of one, I think I lost that game). A little before noon, though, Ashlie hit me with the slap band and I was finally off on my first leg, a mostly uphill 4.1 miler. It was an odd combination of freshness and stiffness as I tried to get to the next checkpoint as quickly as possible. Around 22 minutes later, I attempted to hit George with the slap band, missed, then got an accelerated cooldown as we hopped into the car into the oblivion of inevitable stiffness the next time I tried to run.

Fortunately, there were no snowflakes to be seen, but as we approached the southern shores of Seneca Lake, the breeze had picked up, and checkpoints were becoming more and more crowded. Nevertheless, we braved shorter and shorter warmups and tight muscles as we repeated the pattern of collecting a tired runner and driving quickly but carefully to the next checkpoint. I don’t remember much about my second leg, a slightly downhill 5K, but I think I finally got the hang of hitting George with the slap band.

Mr. John Lindsay’s Dad Rynders looking fashionable

The last few checkpoints began to be a cacophony of relay teams of all backgrounds as well as spectators enjoying a delicious Sunday afternoon brew, which became more and more tempting at this point. We never were in danger of missing a runner at the next checkpoint, a distinct possibility with crowded roads and parking lots, but we were still cutting downtime pretty close. Spirits were still high as roadkills kept accumulating. Soon enough, we made it to the final leg with the possibility of finishing in under 9 hours! The sun was finally shining, and as I made it back into Seneca Lake State Park, the team joined me to cross the finish line, although I bolted not realizing I still had a couple minute buffer. In retrospect, I probably could have made it a little less fanfare-like. Sorry, guys.

Lots of standing around in the cold

Although we were cold, hungry, and tired, it was a successful day for Roadkill. We ended up 9th overall and 6th co-ed in a time of 8 hours, 57 minutes, and 33 seconds. Personally, it was a much-needed catch-up day with my old team, and if the stars align, I can’t wait to join them again in a future year.

Finally done, and a little warmer!

RKR gets lucky at the Running of the Green

Roadkill Racing’s bravest turned out in 30-degree temperatures and strong winds on March 16th to partake in the Running of the Green, the unofficial start to the racing season in Rochester. Despite the less-than-optimal conditions, the team saw many terrific performances, as seen below.

Brett Smith – 3rd overall (27:46)
Mark Streb – 6th overall, 3rd AG (28:35)
Matthew Roberts – 16th overall, 1st AG (30:11)
Marcus Gage – 18th overall, 1st AG (30:23)
Joel Nowatchik – 21st overall, 3rd AG (30:37)
Jeremy Cook – 33rd overall, 8th AG (32:01)
Erin Caffrey – 97th overall, 5th AG (35:59)
Ashlie Roberts – 100th overall, 6th AG (36:09)
John Rynders – 158th overall, 14th AG (38:26)
Lindsay Rynders – 178th overall, 9th AG (38:54)
Marie Davis – 434th overall, 18th AG (44:34)
Valerie Vermeulen – 479th overall, 4th AG (45:33)
Martha Doody – 631st overall, 39th AG (48:31)

Above photos by Alex Tong. More photos available from:

Goat Factory Media Entertainment

Tim Matthews

2018 PGXC Summary (by Lindsay Rynders)

Like many, if not all cross country runners, Fall is my favorite season. Cross country is the main reason for that. I’ve been running cross country since I was in 7th grade. Now, at 26, past seasons seem to all blend together with only major accomplishments or life changes to set them apart. This season was different. This season I was able to run with my Dad on the team. Although he was worried about not being “fast enough,” he quickly found a spot on the team.

The Notorious D.A.D.

The Pete Glavin Cross Country series started off in Newark at Stuart Park, an “iconic course” known for its large hills. It was great to be back with the team and to celebrate afterwards with our traditional Genesee beers. The team collectively put down great times to start the season.

Next, we traveled to Akron Falls for a rainy and muddy 6k. Because the looped nature of the course, it got torn up very quickly. Martha Doody even lost her shoe mid-finishing kick. The Roadkill men’s team finished 2nd place overall.

Mendon Ponds Park came next. it was cold but a beautiful day to race. Mendon Ponds Park is a great place to run, with countless trails. It plays host to many races throughout the year. This year it was also the Masters Championships. The Roadkill master’s women finished in 5th place.

Next, the team traveled to Taughannock Falls for another 6k course. It was a picturesque day to run along the shore of Cayuga Lake and up the gorge of Taughannock Falls. It was difficult not to slow down and enjoy the views. The Roadkill men finished 5th place once again.

Our final race of the season was at the Drumlins Golf Course in Syracuse. It was cold, snowy, icy, and wet. The course was tough because of the lack of footing, but fun in a weird sort of don’t want to do that again sort of way. The number of racers that showed up that morning despite the racing conditions was a true testament to how tough cross country runners are. The men finished the season on a high note, placing in 4th.

While the season has ended, the team looks forward to the upcoming racing year. With Seneca7, the Mighty Mosquito 99, Steve’s Run Down Cancer, and other road and trail races throughout the summer, Roadkillers will be busy until next fall’s Pete Glavin Cross Country series starts again.

The author with her father. The original dynamic duo!