Friday, December 06, 2013

Ice and Mud Await the Runners at NXN

East Ridge girls team visits Nike campus prior to NXN Nationals. Photo courtesty
of Toni Reavis
By Eric Jahn

Eric Jahn will, once again, be providing information from the NXN Nationals in Portland.  Today's installment talks about the course, which was rather muddy last year.  After criticism of the conditions, the organizers said they would be working this year to avoid the wet conditions of 2012.

We visited the course at Portland Meadows as soon as we arrived today.  Several of us who had been here before walked the course, and we discussed conditions compared to other years as we went.

First off, there is standing water on some of the runner's paths, and more on the infield.  Much less than last year, but clearly not dry.  In '08, '09, and'11, there were no puddles at all.  Maybe some soft spots, but no water in those years.

The reports of "driest year yet" are bogus.

In addition, there was ice in every puddle.  We were there in the heat of the day (33 degrees).  It won't get above freezing on Friday, and Saturday it will be around 25 degrees at race time.  Good chance for some mud and lots of frozen ruts from the run-through on Friday.

I think that a meet record is out of the question, and not a lot of boys will break 16 minutes.  I will talk tomorrow to the Minnesotans that ran here last year - Connor Olson and the Wayzata girls.

Preview of the meet by Toni Reavis is HERE.

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