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Meet Report: 2023 Bobcat Challenge

January 23rd, 2023
Meet Report: 2023 Bobcat Challenge

I was back in Bozeman last weekend for the 2023 Bobcat Challenge. In the week leading up to the meet, my coach and I identified that my back was rounded in the “set” position, causing some energy loss on my first step. My PT and I worked on feeling my hip/back angle specifically in blocks which made a huge difference:

Before: lower hip angle, clear rounding in the lower back

After: higher hip angle, much less back rounding

The difference was remarkable; I set several workout PRs in my first speed workout after the adjustment. Naturally, I was excited to put it to the test in a competition setting.

60m: 6.89 (video)

  • We actually ran this race twice—the first time around, the gun misfired, but the starter didn’t recall us until we were 40-50 meters in. Fortunately, they gave us a heat of the 800 to recover before running us again.

  • My “set” position wasn’t quite as sharp as it had been in practice. Then, I took a beat between lifting my hips and straightening my back. But the starter had been quick all day, so I combined both into a single motion. You can see that my back is still a bit rounded in set:

  • Partially because of my back rounding, I didn’t extend my first step as far as I could have. I did recover well, though, and had a step on everybody the whole race.

  • I had a decent transition and did well staying relaxed at top speed.

  • I won my heat and took first overall with a new indoor PR of 6.89!

200m: 22.25

  • For whatever reason, the 60 heats ran slow-to-fast and the 200 was fast-to-slow, leaving me with only about a half hour between races.
  • I still haven’t really done any curve work this year, which definitely bit me on this flat 200m track.
  • I should have angled my blocks slightly more to the outside—I ran up on the inside line after just a couple steps and had to change my acceleration because of it.
  • I was surprised by how quickly the second curve came and lost core tension. Without a strong core, my feet were landing all over the place.
  • I think I still had a bit more headroom to gun it in the first 100 meters. I haven’t done a ton of specific speed endurance workouts yet, so I don’t quite trust myself to finish strong.
  • With all that said, I did win my heat and the meet outright with a new indoor PR of 22.25, which converts to a banked time of 21.85. By IAAF points, this was my best race ever and my first time cracking 1000 points!

Overall, I’m well ahead of last year, when I ran 6.97 and 6.96 in January (and 22.56 in the 200). As usual, I think I left a lot on the table—I think I have at least a tenth in me in the 60 and more in the 200. Fortunately, I’ll have a couple more opportunities to race indoors this season: I may race at the CU Invitational in Boulder this weekend if I can talk my way into the meet. If not, I’ll be back in Bozeman for back-to-back weekends in early February.

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