This past Sunday a bunch of trailrunners and walkers congregated at the Herman and Kaiser YMCA on Tulsa’s Turkey Mountain to run the Backyard Bonanza series of races (5K, 12.5K, and 25K). It kind of takes the place of the old Turkey n Taturs races that took place at the Y a few years ago. This race was created and operated by RunnersWorld Racing. Runners World was involved in the Turkey n Tatur Races as well. This is not the biggest race in town but it is lots of fun. I think this is the second year of the race and I think they had a 30% growth in participants from last year. It takes time to build up a race.
Just as I got there, the 12.5K and 25K contestants were were getting pre-race instructions. Pretty simple really, follow the pink ribbons, don’t cross the yellow ribbons, be nice to other people on the mountain cuz the course is still open to the public, have fun. With the Turkey n Taturs races I did the 8K a bunch of times and the 25K once. I have also cooked hamburgers maybe three times, and helped out at the aid station once or twice. This year I did the 5K event.
So stationed myself at the first turn of the race and got a video of the “peloton” of runners/walkers. And then I waited a half hour or so for the 5K to start.
I started at the back of the pack as usual and pretty much just power walked up the hills on the outward bound part of the course. We ran legacy trails on this segment, pretty hard up and downs.
And then things flattened out a little bit and I found I could trot pretty well without much difficulty. I can’t tell how long it has been since I could run.
We ran on a segment of new trail that was unfamiliar to me. I could have sworn that I have been on all the new trails except the downhill bicycle only Zingo but I was wrong. Not the first time I’ve been wrong.
We ran into what I call the cloverleaf. It is kind of a mix master where you end up running in a bunch of different directions. If you scroll down you will see it on the route maps at the lower left hand (southwest corner of the maps). Still flat and I was still trotting. I ended up doing negative splits and the final mile was 15 minutes, 30 seconds which is close to my “peak” when I ran a lot.
So at the finish, they had bottle openers instead of medals. Suited me fine. Medals have taken over the races and lots of people covet them.
They also had freshly made pancakes. Sign me up for a pancake anytime. They had pumpkin butter to put on them in addition to syrup. That was delicious.
And finished off with a silver bullet on the terrace of the Lodge. The Herman and Kate Kaiser YMCA is deluxe. The powers that be had been gathering donations for some time and when they had to shut down for covid they hired some contractors and got to work and they had a brand new facility when the reopened. In fact they had a race on opening day in June, 2021 and I participated in it.
And of course the tee shirt was deluxe.
I ended up winning my age group!! So that was nice even though I was the only one in my age group.
So this race was the whole package. I’ll be back!
Facility 5 stars (out of 5)
Course 5 stars
Markings 5 stars
Food and Drink 5 stars
TShirt 5 stars
Fellow contestants 5 stars
Awards 5 stars
As you can tell I liked the race.