Monday, November 11, 2013

Turkey--and TATURs!!!

Sunday marked the 8th running of the Turkey and TATURs trail races--a 10K, 25K, and a 50K. This is the Tulsa's oldest ultra, and is one of the toughest 50Ks in the Central United States.
A BIG THANK YOU to Ron Haveman, who made this accurate map of the race course, and is is viewable on the iPhone app PDF Maps. This application allows you to view the map and your location as you make your way through the trailz. Nearly ALL of the trailz on Turkey Mountain are on the map too.

I had great help in marking the trailz the day before. Lynna Gilstrap, Thomas Gilbert, Russell Bennett, Wes Rupell, Mishelle Hanckock, and Scott Smaligo joined me at 7:30 am Saturday morning, and by 2:30 we had it all marked. My right knee has been giving me trouble, and I was not able to roam the course checking on things, but my crew did a perfect job. Additionally, at 4:00 am race day morning, Stormy Phillips, Jen Overmeyer, Edward Snow, Mitch Drummond, and Christi Davis took ribbons and caution tape and left out early on their runs to check for vandalism. They added a few ribbons here and there, and retied caution tape where it had been broken, and there were no mass disasters of people getting lost. Makes me HAPPY!!

picture taken by Russell Bennett
The 50K started promptly at 6:30 am, with the 25K 30 minutes later and the 10K 30 minutes after that.

As a race director, I probably spend more time heaping praise on my volunteers than the actual participants, but if we did not have volunteers, we could not put these races on. Period. Lori and Todd Enlow and family manned the 10K split. This is the most complicated station to work. The 50K and 25Kers turn right, the 10Kers turn left and head the remaining 3.6 miles to the finish line. After nearly 12 miles, the 25 and 50K runners come back through and follow the trailz that the 10Kers took. THEN, the 50K runners do the course in reverse, which can get confusing when runners are coming in from both directions. But Lori and company did a great job. Todd stayed late and made sure the last runner had the great service that everyone got, then he packed up the aid station and toted it out to the upper parking lot entrance, some 200 yards uphill.

Arnold Begay and his son manned the lower parking lot oasis. He had help from Katie Owens and Thomas Gilbert. Since the course is not closed, I am sure they got plenty of attention from other park users. This actually how a LOT of hikers and beginning runners get hooked into our club. :-) In the picture above, Angela can't decide between Mt Dew or Coke, while Chrissy reacts to her first drink of pickle juice.

Charlotte Lindley and her boyfriend (Dennis?) worked the aid station that's at the top of LipBuster. Check out the pic below--amazing art work on the Styrofoam lids.

Dana pointed out that at the three aid stations on the course, as well as at the finish line were all were manned by 100 mile runners. It's awesome that our running friends give back to the sport they love.

You see some weird things at a trail race. It's Turkey Mountain, and it's Turkey and TATURs, so it's only appropriate that we'd see a turkey hat.

And here's a turkey of a different sort. K2 had a nice little 25K jaunt, and sports his signature funky tights.

After running supplies out to the aid stations (and taking a few pictures), I plowed into the chili and hot dogs at the finish line. There was beef chili with and without beans, chicken chili, vegetarian chili (how is that possible?) and of course turkey chili.

Then I mingled and took a few more shots. In a matter of minutes, I photographed three runners with ice packs on sore knees or ankles. I noticed one thing--they were all in the 25K. Hmmm--could it be they should have ran the 50K since none of them had ice packs?

SO since I did not (could not) run, and I was really pouting about it, I meandered out on the course a little ways to take pictures. Lake Logan is very near the end for the 50Kers. This wood bridge is a mere 1/4 mile from the finish mats.

Here comes John Nobles, aka Trail Jesus. John is running his longest run in months, coming off a foot injury. Safe to say--TJ's BACK!

Cameron and Brandon (also known as Trail Goat and Thing Two) did their 1st Turkey and TATURs 50K. This is not their 1st 50K though--they have SEVERAL ultra finishes between them, including 50 miles, 100K, and 100 miles.

A few pictures from Chris Owens, RunnersWorld's newest employee.Picture Chris OwensPicture Chris OwensPicture Chris Owens

Finally, Terry Hayes from Inverness, FL ran her 2nd T&T 50K here--and at the age of 70!! Last time here, she drove from South Carolina, but she has since moved to Florida. She flew this time, and had to leave out to catch a plane home. She is race director of several trail races back east, and I'd love to run some of them--some day.

A big thank you to Brian with TATUR Racing for doing a perfect job on the timing, course marking on Friday, and doing more than his share of the race directing duties.

Dana as she always does, handled the post race food, and packing all the aid stations canisters--a HUGE job. And she put up with my grouchiness which was in full affect after getting only 90 minutes of sleep Saturday night. No way I could put on a race without her.

More heaping thank yous to Susan "Melon" Westmoreland, Jeff and Amelia Elbert, and Kurt and Shelley Egli for basically just camping at the start/finish and helping out all day. Cindy Metcalf served food for hours after finishing her 25K. Kathy pitched in and packed things up even though she's knocked out 31 miles on the trailz. Mike Rives also worked his tail off helping pack things up after running 50K, and Russell did a little of everything, including taking a LOT of super pictures. Candice Brown pulled almost 6 miles of ribbons right after the race, and Lynna will probably have them all removed by tomorrow. I bet I'm forgetting to thank someone. I have such great friends.
CLICK HERE for complete race results.


  1. Nobody runs or reports on a race like you TZ.

  2. Thanks for the report and for the race! I had a very trying and painful 50K. I guess that means it was good. :P