news from the "other side"
Defending Champ Patrick Calls Out Carpenter for 3rd Annual Hippie Run
Now here in Manitou Springs, home of the world-renowned Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon (a race of which Matt Carpenter is the undisputed king of the mountain), a race such as the Hippie Run---which has been touted as “a roughly 5K frolic through Manitou”---would be but a Sunday warm-up for even the most average of runners. But the circumstances of this race are anything but ordinary. Frankmore concurs. “A lot of heat builds-up in the rainbow-afro wig I wear. But that’s nothing compared to the intense burning I feel at the other end of my body…on my feet that is.” And therein lies the big challenge of the Hippie Run. To win this one you have to run BAREFOOT! Hence the granite gauntlet. As Frankmore puts it, “Running barefoot on decomposed Pikes Peak Granite---which is crumpled like so much bleu cheese turned rusty red but with hard sharp edges that will slice apart the toughest of soles---makes this race more than just some hippie-trippie psychedelic-sunshine daydream cakewalk. It’s more a groovy rite of passage, with a kaleidoscope twist.” Why oh why, this reporter is forced to ask, should one subject oneself to such costumed barefoot-running madness?
By Peter Hunter
In a bold maneuver that seemed almost predestined to happen, defending Hippie Run champion Patrick Campo made it clear he is aiming to win this year’s race again, even, and perhaps especially, if high altitude runner-superstar and local legend Matt Carpenter shows up. “I’ve been training pretty hard this past year,” said a relaxed and confident Patrick in a recent interview. “And I’ve got what it takes to win this thing…again.” Difficulty to the Hippie Run??? I mean, how difficult can it be to run down Manitou Avenue dressed in costume like a bunch of long-haired freaks in an Andrew Lloyd Webber musical singing “this is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius…Age of Aquarius….Aquarrrrriuusss… “Well, for the record, we run up Manitou Avenue,” says a grinning Frankmore, who incidentally won “the Run” in 2007, its inaugural year. “And besides, that’s only for the first half-mile or so. After that we take a left on Ruxton, head up for another half-mile or so…and then another left on Spring Trail road and on up the Intemann Trail to begin the off-road portion of the race. That’s when things start getting really tough.” “Because it’s fun,” says Frankmore, shifting in his chair to a posture reminiscent of Rodin’s The Thinker. “And because running barefoot on raw Earth reminds us most directly of our intimate connection there, and how the impact of our steps upon the Earth, whether taken lightly or with brutal thoughtlessness, in-turn affects our own ability to have a successful race.” For those who are not as much convinced by abstraction as they are by direct experience, I suppose running this race is the only way to find out if Frankmore's thinking holds water. In any event, I’ve been reassured by race organizers that Hippie Run philosophy does, at least at the post-race celebration, hold beer. And what about that “new level of difficulty” purportedly added to this year’s race? When one race official, who asked to remain anonymous, was finally reached for comment, he not so surprisingly replied, “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Well, at least this much is known about the race: It will be held this year on Saturday, September 26. Race begins and ends at the Manitou Springs Public Library. Starting time is approximately 11am sharp! Costumes are encouraged, NO EXCEPTIONS! Running barefoot is required, unless you'd rather not.
See ya there!
As far as Carpenter is concerned, he has no idea the gauntlet has been tossed in his direction. And neither does Patrick know he is doing the tossing. In fact this reporter has the inside scoop that this is all just a publicity stunt put-on by a couple of Hippie Run pranksters. Hippie Run Founder and Co-organizer Brent Weiner had this to say about the brewing Patrick-Carpenter rivalry, “We’re almost certain this “rivalry story” (finger quotes inserted by Weiner) was made-up to garner attention. In fact we’re completely certain.” Asked how he could be so confident Weiner replied, “Because we created the story.” A cheap and shameless publicity stunt? If only things were that simple. According to Weiner’s co-organizing partner Dean Frankmore, the plot thickens from there, “It’s true I made-up that story with Brent, but what he doesn’t know at the time of this interview, is that race-organizers are now, as we speak, adding a whole new level of difficulty to this year’s race…or so rumor has it.”
Hippie Run champion Patrick Campo stands ready to take on all comers
HIppie Run contestants put on their game face
True, despite all hype and rumor milling, it’s the trail-run part of this multi-challenge event that separates the men from the boys, or if you will, the hippies from the wannabes. Because here the grade gets steeper, windier and less regular…and, as Frankmore calls it, that’s the beginning of the granite gauntlet.
for questions call Brent at 685-9678 or Dean at 685-0712