The global pandemic caused by the new coronavirus may have cost runners the opportunity to gather together for the Trail Animals Running Club’s popular Spring Classic trail races on April 25, but the pandemic couldn’t stop the race’s spirit. Continue reading Virtual Spring Classic Winners Crowned for Creative Routes
The Trail Animals Running Club’s annual TARC Spring Classic is one of the most popular trail-running events in Massachusetts, drawing more than 300 runners to the trails of Weston each April to tackle distances from 10K to 50K. The 10th annual Spring Classic was scheduled for Saturday, April 25, and it was shaping up to be another busy day on the trails with hundreds of runners once again signed up to race.
As the global pandemic caused by the new coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19, expanded its spread across the state and the country, the race’s future was put in doubt. Then, following an order by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker limiting the size of gatherings to no more than 50 people to help slow the spread of COVID-19, Spring Classic co-Race Directors Annie Gagliardi and Michael McDuffie announced on Wednesday, March 18, that the race was canceled.
The Spring Classic was the second TARC race and third in Massachusetts to cancel due to COVID-19. That number has since grown to eight cancellations, three postponements, and another that will take place as a virtual race. That means that after kicking off the year with the G.A.C. Fat Ass 50K and the Cape Cod Frozen Fat Ass 50K in January and the TARCtic Frozen Yeti on Feb. 1-2, the earliest the next in-person ultra in Massachusetts might take place is July. That’s a long time for ultrarunners to go without connecting with their trail tribe. Some race directors are doing what they can to minimize that disconnect even if races can’t take place in person at the moment by introducing virtual races, a concept that has exploded in popularity nationwide during the pandemic. Continue reading Race Directors Embrace Virtual Options to Keep Runners Motivated During Pandemic
Michael McDuffie and Annie Gagliardi, co-Race Directors for the Trail Animals Running Club’s TARC Spring Classic, hoped their race on April 25 in Weston, Mass., would be able to avoid cancellation in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, but they let runners know not to get their hopes up. Just days ago, McDuffie pegged the chances of the race taking place at “15.2 percent.”
On Wednesday evening, the percentage dropped to zero when McDuffie made the announcement that the race was canceled. Continue reading TARC Spring Classic is Latest Race Canceled Due to COVID-19
WESTON, Mass. – Of course it rained. It was always going to happen. This is the Spring Classic, after all.
The Trail Animals Running Club’s Spring Classic has established its share of traditions through the years – the yeti howl at the start; the wooden “trophies” foraged from the course; the MarketBasket sushi tray for volunteers – but perhaps the most predictable feature of the early-season event is rain. Nearly every Spring Classic has experienced at least a bit of the wet stuff, usually during pre-race set-up or at some point in the first loop or two of the race. Continue reading Burke, Damon Splash, Dash to Victories in Spring Classic 50K
More than 300 runners took part in the ninth annual TARC Spring Classic on Saturday, April 20, 2019, in Weston, Mass. The following are a small sample of photos from the race. A full gallery with 130 photos can be found on the MassUltra Facebook page at this link. Continue reading Photos: TARC Spring Classic
The Trail Animals Running Club’s ninth annual TARC Spring Classic 50K, marathon, half marathon and 10K took place on Saturday, April 20, 2019, in Weston, Mass. Continue reading Results: TARC Spring Classic
WESTON, Mass. – The TARC Spring Classic has developed a reputation for damp, drizzly weather and chilly temperatures during recent years, and this year was shaping up to be more of the same when multiple late-season snowstorms pounded the region in recent weeks.
When race day rolled around, however, runners were granted a reprieve from the challenging conditions and instead were treated to one of the finest days for running in 2018. Sunny skies, temperatures in the upper 50s, and mostly dry trails made for fast running and a spirited day of running at the eighth annual TARC Spring Classic on Saturday, April 21. Continue reading Allen Capitalizes On Warm Weather with Speedy Performance at Spring Classic
The Trail Animals Running Club’s eighth annual TARC Spring Classic took place Saturday, April 21, in Westwood, Mass. Runners chose from a 50K, marathon, half marathon, or 10K. Continue reading Results: TARC Spring Classic
WESTON, Mass. – It was close to 5 p.m. when Kevin Paige emerged from the woods and the finish line came into view. A look of relief and an exuberant grin spread across his face as he stretched his arms out wide with joy.
“You guys are still here!” proclaimed Paige, 47. “Oh my God! I can’t believe you guys are still here!”
Paige’s 50K race hadn’t gone quite as he’d hoped at the Trail Animals Running Club’s TARC Spring Classic on Saturday, April 22. His legs gave him problems after two loops of the five-loop course. Determined to finish what he started, he gritted his way through the ultramarathon, battled the elements and the trail, and earned his finish. After more than eight hours on the trails, however, he spent the final miles worried that he’d return to the start/finish only to find everyone had left, and his bag – with the keys to his truck inside – would be gone.
The Trail Animals’ motto is “Leave No Animal Behind,” however, and this day was no different. Paige was greeted with applause and open arms, and his keys were right where he left them so he could make it home to Manchester, N.H., that evening.
From the first across the finish line to the back of the pack, runners didn’t allow a steady drizzle or temperatures in the upper 30s to low 40s dampen their day or their spirits. Instead, around 350 runners took part in the Spring Classic, running in the 50K, marathon, half marathon or 10K, in what was one of the largest crowds ever for the seventh annual event. Continue reading Despite Rain, Runners Shine at Spirited Spring Classic