Roll for the Roses: Chris Lomen Race Report

 

Roll for the Roses 2015 Full Race from Chris Lomen on Vimeo.

The following is Chris Lomen’s perspective of the race:

Unlike Madeline Island, we were treated to a beautiful morning for a race at the 20th Roll for the Roses 10k. Very little wind, 70 degrees and sunny. It looks like there were about 70-80 skaters who skated this year, making it one of the smaller races of the season. It’s fun to have the huge races with hundreds of people, but it’s also pretty cool that in a smaller race like this, it’s just the local skaters. Combine that with the short (but hilly) 6 mile distance, and just about any skater who has a particularly good day could find themselves in lead pack. Makes for an exciting day!

 

Going into this race, I knew one thing for sure — Kelin and Elias were going to take off from the get-go, just like at Apostle. And that’s exactly what happened. They went out hard and fast, attacking the initial downhill with ferocity. Paul Dyrud, myself, and a few others hung on through the top of the second hill, but as soon as we reached the top, Kelin took off on another hard attack. That dramatically thinned the herd, and just like that, Kelin was a speck in the distance, with Elias a couple dozen yard behind him, with Twigs alone in 3rd a ways behind them. This left a chase pack (or lead pack, depending how you look at it?) of Paul, Gary Johnson, Ryan Mullery, Rowdy Larson, and myself trying to reel them in. I was very excited to see Rowdy and Ryan duking it out in the lead pack this year. The coach in me loves to see my fellow skaters and friends taking their skating to the next level!

 

Since Twigs and Paul are on the same team, Paul tried to slow the pack down whenever he was pulling to prevent us from catching up to Twigs. It took some hard pulls from Gary, Ryan, and myself to eventually catch Twigs with about 2 miles to go. Elias and Kelin were nowhere to be seen.

 

Once we caught Twigs, the pace steadied out a bit, and became more tactical. There was nobody within striking distance of catching us from behind. Everyone was saving their legs for the final big hill climb. Gary got stuck pulling the line up the hill. About halfway up, we heard a sudden clatter of skates as Rowdy took off from the back of the line, practically running up the hill, with Paul right behind him. They quickly created a 30 foot gap, but the massive hill took its toll, and we caught them just as they reached the top.

 

Coming up to the top of the hill, there was a car stopped in the right turn lane (where we needed to turn). The cops were motioning furiously to get the car to move, but it just sat there, leaving about a 3 foot gap between the car and the curb for us to squeeze through. Thankfully, it didn’t end up affecting the outcome, since nobody was making a move. In general the local police do a phenomenal job controlling traffic for this race, but this was just bad luck and a clueless driver.

 

If you think Madeline Island’s finishing turn is crazy, come try this course sometime. The Roll for the Roses finishes with a significant downhill with a 90 degree left turn, followed immediately with a hairpin right turn onto the Oval surface, which then tracks to the left. Going into that final downhill, I pulled just ahead of the pack, but I swung out just a bit too wide to the right side of the road. I gave the pack just enough room to squeeze by me, which was the difference between a potential podium spot, and 7th place. I ended up last onto the Oval track, right behind Rowdy. I pulled a page out of my track racing book and turned on the jets on the last corner to the finish line. I might have caught Rowdy and gotten sixth, we might have tied, or he got me and I got 7th. Hard to tell, and the “official” results are incorrect as of now. Video is inconclusive.

 

By the time the lead pack finished, Kelin was already finishing up brunch and on his third mimosa. He finished about 90 seconds ahead of us, averaging 2:30 miles, completely on his own. Plain and simple — there’s nobody else around here on his level right now. Congrats Kelin! And congrats to Elias for a great second place finish. Elias lives up in Bemidji and is a brand new addition this year to the Adam’s Inline squad. Glad to see you plugged in to the inline community.

The actual finishing results, as far as I know:

1. Kelin

2. Elias

3. Paul Dyrud

4. Jeff Terwilliger

5. Gary Johnson

6.Me

7. Rowdy

8. Ryan Mullery

9. John Schulte

 

Again, special shout out to Rowdy and Ryan for hanging on to the lead pack this year. Huge accomplishment in any race! Keep up the great work!

 

 

Congratulations to all the finishers! Thanks to the City of Roseville and the folks at the Oval for putting on another fun race.

~Chris Lomen