Helderberg to Hudson Half Marathon – 1,671 Finished Epic ARE Race

by the Runners

Scott Mindel-First Place Male

I was hoping to run a PR and knew Ryan would help me keep the pace honest at the beginning. We ran together step for step the first 4 miles or so then over the next 10k.  I slowly extended my lead by a couple seconds each mile. When we got off the Helderberg Rail Trail and onto the other bike path, I lost a little rhythm and could tell Ryan was making up some ground. I knew I didn't want the race to turn into a sprint at the end and luckily I found another gear in the last kilometer to hold him off. I was super happy with my time and beating a runner like Ryan gives me a lot of confidence for Vermont City Marathon Memorial Day Weekend!

Ryan Udvadia-Second Place Male

The race was the first competitive half marathon for me. I knew Scott was not new to this distance, so I was a bit nervous going up against him but pleased to know that I'd have some real deal competition. He boosted my confidence at this distance as I thought the first few miles were a bit quick for me but turns out they were not - thanks to the great pace job by Scott. Looking back at the race I probably should have stayed with him the whole time and who knows, it could have benefited us both.  The most challenging part of the race was coming off the rail trail when we started making turns. I could feel the burn at the bottom of feet.  Quite a course. All in all, it was a great experience and I am looking forward to toeing the line again with Scott and hitting the distance.

Evan Dolecki-Third Place Male

I raced this on pretty short notice. My main goal for the spring was the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler in Washington, D.C. where I ran really well, so I wanted to give a half marathon a good effort.  My goal was to run under 1:12, which I accomplished with time to spare!  I think the course was exactly how I thought it was going to be given the description I had read of the area.  It was really fast. My goal was to place top 5 and I did that too. Great day.

Cara Sherman-First Place Female

The H2H was my half marathon debut. The Albany Rail Trail is one of my favorite paths and the support along the way made this race an excellent experience. I exceeded my goals and expectations for the race, which boosted my confidence in my ability to race longer distances as well as my motivation to continue working hard. It has put me in a great position to begin marathon training!

I knew that Karen has had a lot of success, especially with the longer distances, so since this was my first half marathon, I wanted to go out more conservatively. I tried to hang back for the first half of the race and when I was still feeling good by mile 7, I decided to make a move. After I passed at mile 7 and took the lead, I just tried to maintain my pace and extend my lead.

I will be training for the Marine Corp Marathon in October.

Meg Versteegen – Sets PR for Half – First in Age Division

They say that gravity makes for a terrible friend, as it always seems to be bringing you down.

However, in the case of the Helderberg to Hudson Half Marathon, gravity is your BFF! After first hearing about the 2019 inaugural edition, I had wanted to run this scenic net-downhill course, but as we all know the world had other plans for the next couple years. So, when I first saw that registration had opened up for this year, I immediately signed up - something I rarely do. And truly, this race did not disappoint! Everything was very organized and well-done with an overall vibe that was positive and friendly. Even Mother Nature cooperated, serving up a gorgeous morning with the wind, rain, and cold holding off until later in the day. 

The first couple of miles travel through Voorheesville before connecting to the Rail Trail for the next nine. I started off a little hot, pumped up on adrenaline and excited to see what I could do. I settled down and found a nice rhythm on the trail, enjoying the budding greenery and pockets of spectators. The miles ticked by, well-marked by tall blue sails. I find the elevation change on the trail to be deceptive, as in most places the percent grade change isn't large, and it only becomes obvious that you've been running slightly downhill if you turn around and start running the opposite direction. This made for a terrific course, and the South End Connector portion for the last two miles helped tie things together nicely. Did anyone else notice the chalked encouragements to 'Grammie' in mile 12, with the second one telling her to 'go faster'? Those definitely made me smile, and I figured if Grammie could do it, so could I. Once I hit that green pathway, I knew the finish line was near! I had been watching my splits throughout but not my overall time, and as I came around that last bend and saw the clock I was elated - shiny new half PR for me! As we all know, there are so many factors that impact your race performance, and when they all play nicely together it's a beautiful thing. Congrats to all who ran and thanks to all who supported - we are lucky to be able to do this.

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1671 completed the race

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