Skating: Seattle Skate for MS

Torrent members

Article from Skate Journeys (Seattle) website
by Trish Alexander

The MS Skate 2004 was a blast, but don’t trust what I say about it…

Read these participant comments:

Mauro Costa

THANKS!!!!! for another awesome MS skate!!! It was truly awesome! You rock!!
Was it the first time? No 🙂
Was it a personal Best? No, not as far as time is concerned, but in a way, YES! (see below!)
Who did you skate with? with an awesome group of about 10-12 people, most of the way. Sue Bream was in that group.
What did you like about it? EVERYTHING, honestly! People were happy, and it was obvious everybody was having fun.
What surprised you? How well I did (about 1h34m) considering that: 1) I did not train *at all* (not even once!), 2) I injured my entire middle back 4 days before the skate, and 3) the fact that stubbed my little toe the day before the event (I had someone look at it and the guy said it is *broken* YIKES!!! but I need to have x-rays to verify….)
Other things that happened, which might be noteworthy…. the true camaraderie of the group I skated with. It was the first time ever that people walked up to me at the end and thanked me for pulling the group at different times. It was just a very happy event over all that made me keep smiling for the rest of the day and today!!! It was an awesome high!!! (the 3 doughnuts did help!!! LOL)

Race start

Terry Schmidtbauer:

Was it the first time? This was my first time I skated a marathon.
Was it a personal Best? Just making it to the finish line was good enough for me.
Who did you skate with? Skated by myself.
What did you like about it? I like being done with it.
What surprised you?
I was surprised by how bad the trail is on that side. I’m used to the eastside (from Bothell to Redmond) where there are not as many street crossings and those dreaded rumble strips. I was also surprised by how rude some of the bikers were on the trail. Most bikers were quit courteous but it only takes a few rude bikers to give them all a bad name.
Other things that happened, which might be noteworthy…. I lost my pair of blue Nike sunglasses. I have another pair just like them in silver so it’s not a great loss. I hope whoever finds them enjoys them as much as I did.

They're off!

Mike Kuchler, Portland

Was it a personal Best? yes, very much so!
Who did you skate with? A few people, first it was with about 8 people who skated the pants off of me, then I got picked up by Eric and Jackie.
What did you like about it? Everything. The best part of the skate happened at the very end-right before the last turn to the stretch at the finish line. Jackie and I skated from before the half way point to the end with no one in sight behind us. Right before that last turn I heard a yell to push from Jackie. Out of nowhere there was a draft line of about 8 people or so. They were coming up pretty fast. I started pushing pretty hard, two of the line broke off and passed me. I started to chase them thinking “I’m not giving up without a fight!” So I started to push harder but started to get a little tired and figured that maybe I was over my head at that point-I didn’t know where the finish line was……and then I saw it at the end of the stretch as we rounded the corner. So I started to push harder. I passed Jackie, then I passed both of the two men who had passed me. Another skater called “on your left!” I couldn’t move at that point, but I wasn’t about to slow down. Then the gap between me and the rest started to widen more and more. One of my good friends, with whom I skate frequently, tells me often that you should end a marathon or race stronger than when you started. I rose up my hands and had the biggest smile on my face. I knew at that point, as I crossed the line, even though I was exhausted, I had finished stronger than when I started.
What surprised you? The car that intentionally ignored the volunteer and
moved directly in my path. Other things that happened which might be noteworthy> …> . In order to avoid the car, I pushed off with my hand, did a full 360 turn on my skates and still managed to stay on top of them. (Mind you I never tried that at 15 mph on a downhill slope!!) And even with that I still managed to make good time!!! Got to cut short Trish. I’ll talk with you soon. Again thank you so much for everything!!

Pete Cooperider:

Was it the first time? Yes
Was it a personal best? I guess it would be. My goal was to do it in less than 2 hrs. [He did]
Who did you skate with? It was lonely in the middle
What did you like about it? The challenge, as I’m not much of a distance skater!
What surprised you? How fast some of those people were!!
Other things that happened which might be noteworthy…. Dang red lights

Lisa MacLean, British Columbia


Hi Trish, I had a great race weekend in Seattle – this was the second time I’d skated in the MS skate; my first was last year in the torrential rain, thunder and lightning, so I was looking forward to seeing what the course actually looked like! Fantastic weather this year.

I skated with some of my friends and club mates from the Vancouver Torrent Inline Skating Club – John, Lori, Al, Neil, Kyle, Christine and I all began together, and skated with about 10 others in a long pace line for several miles. At points the line also included Tom Dalton, Klaus, and Lorne Milne. Gradually the pace line broke up and by the half-way point, it was John Goodsell, Christine Crossman, Dave Krenz and I motoring along at quite a good clip. At about the 18 mile mark I wiped out hard on one of the rumble strips, and scored quite a nice raspberry on my left arm. I was unable to keep up the pace and Dave said he’d skate with me, so John and Christine motored on and Dave and I took it easy for about 2 miles until I had my energy back. We then picked up the pace and finished very well, I thought, in 1:47, not too far behind John and Christine who came in at 1:43. This was a personal best time for Dave and Christine, who were skating the MS for the first time, as well my personal best for that distance. I’m not sure whether it was John’s best time; he’s skated in the MS every year, I think.

At the very beginning of the race, I saw out of the corner of my eye a skater go down; I hadn’t realized it but I guess Ignacio and I had clipped skates and he was the one who had gone down – yikes!

I really enjoyed the event. My only complaint is about those rumble strips – they are deadly and dangerous and should be paved over!

Thanks for all your hard work in organizing the event! Lisa

Kim Bria, Portland

Was it the first time? Third time
Was it a personal Best? Not personal best finish time (new skates), but personal best effort
Who did you skate with? Mark, the indoor speed skater, and Emily (his 3 year old daughter in stroller). Mark kicks butt uphill too – baby in tow!!
What did you like about it? As always, well organized (late buses happen!). Trail was clean – plenty of volunteers and skate patrol at intersections and first aid.
What surprised you? Seeing Angie (Portland’s own) at a major intersection – that made me very happy since she hasn’t been able to skate. Also seeing James [Wolford the grandfather of our inline skating movement in Seattle] kick it with everything he has – bad hips or not.
Other things that happened which might be noteworthy…. It was a big surprise to represent” Portland in fundraising. The folks at my office, W&H Pacific, were so incredibly generous. Especially considering this event was in Seattle. Ignacio donated class fees as well. Maybe due to the charitable nature of this skate, or the company I keep, our group was especially considerate and generous with each other this weekend. Lawrence won a bag of food at the event (full of things he likes) and without hesitation said he was taking it to the food bank. We had to arm wrestle our host to pay for dinner. Those kinds of experiences in total with the actual skate are what keeps us coming back, renewing friendships and spending insane amounts of money on gear. Plus you get to talk about everyone on the way home! (Only good stuff – of course).

See Lisa’s photos here.