Archive | June, 2011

Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Marathon Finisher’s Belt Buckle

2011 Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Marathon Belt Buckle

Here is a look at the finisher’s belt buckle from the 2011 Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Marathon that took place in Riverside, California on May 28, 2011.

Read Kista Cook’s Race Report from the 2011 Nanny Goat 100 Miler

More Marathon & Ultra Marathon Finisher’s Medals and Belt Buckles

[photo via Kista Cook]

Posted in Bling, Featured, Medals, Ultra Marathon0 Comments

Josh Hite – 1st Place 2011 Ridge Runner Marathon

How Josh Hite Won the 2011 Ridge Runner Marathon (Race Report)

2011 Ridge Runner Marathon Race Report – (Josh Hite)

I saw Gary hitting the trail.  Actually, I saw the Jeep Cherokee first.  Hazard lights gave it away.  I had been tracking both for some fourteen miles.  The vehicle followed the course; Gary followed the vehicle; I followed Gary.  Now both were 0.42 miles ahead according to my watch’s calculations.  I passed the mile marker at eighteen right after he passed me going the other way.  The elapsed lap time said 3:10 when I passed his mark.  Three minutes ten second to catch the leader in the last eight miles.  Yeap, it was where I wanted to be after thinking about the various possibilities over the past hour and a half.

I dropped off the kids with my parents in Virginia the day before.  My wife stayed at home this trip to enjoy a night without either me or our sons.  My cohort, Dallas (Smith), and I continued on into West Virginia after unloading the kids.  The plan to have a quick trip that included rough marathon appealed to both of us.  At least it appealed to me, and he was kind enough to accompany me and participate as well.  I knew he had a shot at a top ten finish in this race.  Not too shabby for a seventy year old, but our last marathon trip together was to Boston where he placed second in his age group.  His time would have won six of the last eight Boston’s; it just happened that 2011 was one of the two.

Eight hours sitting and driving are not usually the best way to spend the day before a marathon, but we both had done it before.  Stopping occasionally had left us getting to Parkersburg, WV and our hotel at 7:15.  The meal at a local Italian joint called Johnny Carino’s was substantial.  A Peroni beer, antipasto salad, and the tour of Italy featuring ziti, lasagna, and fettuccini was almost too much.  I usually try to stay away from red sauce before a race.  Maybe I was sabotaging my own chances.  I didn’t care because earlier I had received bittersweet news that a friend was offered a job – a job to which I too had applied.  I was happy for her, but I didn’t want to hear this before a marathon.  The last thing I needed was to be fretting over lost chances prior to running my race.  At least my company helped put my mind at ease.  Dallas’s wisdom has a knack for that.

I appreciated the little rest I had the night before, but I hate waking to an alarm clock.  It was one of those necessary evils of a race – like port a poties.

Not many races allow you to register the day of the marathon.  This one does.  The previous two times I ran this race, I registered the day before.  Not this time.  We pulled in to register for the race that morning and immediately I saw Gary Krugger getting in his car.  Dallas and I both ran with Gary last August for the first time when he drove from Erie, Pennsylvania to race with us and eleven other people in 90+ degree heat.  Since then, I ran Knoxville with Gary (where he helped me up when I fell on the course), and I ran Boston with him (where I tried to get him to a personal best, but I blew up and he ran on to finish strong).  Gary is one of the few who runs more marathons than me, some 130+ with seventeen sub 3’s this year alone. Gary was there in West Virginia’s North Bend State Park to run a sub 3. West Virginia was one of the few fifty states Gary has not run under three hours.

The turnaround was the first time I saw Gary since around mile eight.  I told him that I didn’t know if I could help him with a sub 3 on this course as we walked to the start line together just two hours earlier.  This course was not made to be fast.  The first mile is synonymous with the first hill, which Gary and I ran side by side.  Downhills occur for a few miles and then the course climbed like my heart rate until runners hit a town (and the exposed sun) around mile twelve.  Three miles on a busier road with no shade lead to a mile and a half steep climb.  The flat shaded section of the rail trail at eighteen to twenty four goes through three tunnels.  A climb from twenty four to twenty five is followed by a scorching downhill to the finish.

After I ran up the first hill, I noticed that Gary was too fast on the downhills for me.  I had to save myself if I were to have a good race.  His lead started growing at mile four.  Because of a few stops when “nature called,” he had about a minute and a half at mile seven.  I didn’t see him after the town at the half way mark.  His lead had to be four minutes, but I still hit the half way around 1:30 and change.  My legs felt use for the first time climbing from fifteen to sixteen.

I wanted to save my legs to seventeen.  I changed it to eighteen after I had lost sight of Gary.  Now I spotted him again, and it was time for my legs to take over.  He spoke from across the path, but I couldn’t understand what he said.  The Jeep and the wind drowned my hearing.  I wanted to hold back a little longer – just enough to get over the bridge and see if anyone was behind me.  There wasn’t.  It was between Gary and me.

I wished that I had worn my Montrail Rogue Racers.  This was just the type of trail they would crush.  Too much road for the shoe I decided.  I want to save those for the trails.  I picked up my pace from running a 6:50ish on the flats to a 6:35 pace.  The heat was getting to me.  I pushed forward and passed early starters.  Then I spotted the blinking lights of the Jeep far ahead.  The tunnels lay just ahead.

As I went into the first tunnel, I remembered how little sunlight penetrated.  I had remembered the hills, the sun, and the turnaround.  Somehow I forgot the darkness in the tunnels.  Run like on the trails.  Set the foot down lightly and lock the ankle into place.  It worked.  I powered through the first tunnel and was met with a surprise.  Gary’s ponytail caught my attention.  It waved just thirty seconds ahead of me.  I was running a 6:30 pace.  He must have slowed to a 7:30.

If the reader wants solid advice or some kind of secret to racing a marathon, then pay attention.  If there is a downhill anywhere from 16-20 followed by a sustained flat, then that is where people will break.  It delays “the wall” because of the downhill.  The runner hits the flat and starts working harder.  Everyone knows about “the wall” and expects it to occur.  When going downhill, you feel good.  Most of the time when running on a flat section you feel good, but after running downhill, “the wall” is condensed and magnified. Gary and I used the same strategy in Knoxville to dust two guys sticking with us.  Today it bit Gary.

I approached quickly, and he looked back muttering, “I have been waiting on you.”  I couldn’t help him. His race was over, and if I talked or slowed, my race would be over too.  He knew that he was going to have to come back to West Virginia to get his Sub three.  I sped ahead to mile twenty two, two miles until the last hill.

6:30 pace held true until I hit the hill.  I craved water, but only Gatorade was at the stations.  It could have been Crisco – I wasn’t having any.  My stomach may not have handled it.  This was on my mind but not as much as the upcoming hill was.  I was greeted by a grandmother and a young girl taking pictures when I hit mile marker twenty four.  Their encouragement was appreciated, but the appreciation did not relieve the pain expressed on my face.  I noticed my watch display 2:44:??  What?  That is a 6:52 pace, but the hill was ahead.  I started my mantra, “feet on the ground.”  The more my feet hit the ground, the faster I covered the ground.  I thought I was in Jackson County running up the hills with Dallas.  If there were anyone who had trained to run up these hills, it was us.  Breaking three hours would be tough though.

I could see the top.  The last water station awaited me.  I took two waters: one spilling on my head and the other splashing in my face and mouth.  Mile twenty five was only twenty feet later.  8:10 for the hill, but more importantly my watch showed 2:52:28.  I knew 6:40 pace is 1:20 for the last two tenths of a mile.  That was eight minutes, too much time.  6:00 flat is 7:12 for the final 1.2 miles.  I had a downhill, but I knew it needed to be around 6:00 flat.  The feet hit the ground nonstop.  Leaning forward and using the tangents helped me push out a 6:13 mile.  1:19 across the bridge and around two turns to break three hours: difficult for sure.  The bridge had a van coming out.  Did it see me? I had to be a blur.  It moved right and let me continue my path.  The finish clock ticked 2:59:3x through the leaves.  My arms pumped, and I leaned forward to see 59:40.  I ran harder and the clocked seemed to tick faster.  It seems that time would have slowed, but it sped ahead.  59:52.  I stopped looking and put my eyes on the finish shoot.  59:56.  How could the seconds pass so quickly?  I crossed the line and hit my watch – 2:59:58.  This took the cake for the hardest I worked for a sub three.

Gary came through about eight minutes later.  I handed him the ice bag someone gave me and apologized for not chatting when I saw him last.  He gathered his facilities, and we walked back to the top of the hill towards the car.  Cheering people (ten milers mainly) to the finish as we went against the flow, we noticed third place.  He was some thirty minutes back.  We continued up the hill hoping to see Dallas, and there he was.  Fourth!  Seventy and fourth!  It doesn’t matter your age when you are fourth.  You will win whatever age group.  He just happened to be in the last age group.  Not too bad for not training for a marathon, but we have been running those hills in Jackson County.

Josh Hite

Posted in Marathon, Race Reports2 Comments

Flying Pig Marathon 2011 (Ribbon)

2011 Flying Pig Marathon Medal

This creative and unique finisher’s medal is from the 2011 Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati, Ohio that took place on May 1, 2011.

It was the first two-sided medal that I have received for finishing a race.  The front had a ‘flying pig’ with the phrase “I HIGHTAILED IT,” and the back of the medal had the backside of a ‘flying pig’ with the phrase “I MADE A RUN FOR IT” with the skyline of Cincy in the background.

The decorative ribbon (see photo below) completed this first class medal. The ribbon was thick, with flying piggies, and the name of the race on it.

Flying Pig Marathon Website

Posted in Bling, Featured, Marathon, Medals, Running2 Comments

Kista Cook’s Legs After the Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Marathon

Kista Cook’s Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Race Report (2011)

Nanny Goat 100 Mile  Ultra Marathon Race Report (May 28-29, 2011)
My 1st 100 miler, 1 loop at a time

Nanny Goat is a race that offers to run 12 hours, 24 hours or 100 miles. The course: a one mile loop on a horse ranch. You actually run through the horse stables each mile and swipe your timing card attached to your wrist. I picked this race because I thought it would be a good way to find out if I am even cut out for running all day and all night. Passing by your own aid station every mile seemed doable.

Last year, I attempted Nanny Goat and dropped at 69 miles, 20 hours due to very bad blister feet. Consensus was the shoes caused the problem. I ditched those Asics trail shoes and got Inov-8 Roclite 295s I’ve run in for a year and no blisters. This year I also summoned a crew of 6 and told them their goal was to keep me out of the chair. I even questioned the times I had to use the bathroom whether or not I was looking for an excuse to sit down. Yes, we had portable pots at this race. I had 28 hours to finish 100 miles and I assumed that’s what it would take me. Within first few hours of running I kept saying I was running too fast as I was way ahead of schedule but I let happen and banked the miles.

I trained for 5 months with a women training for Western States 100 this month. We ran at least one of our weekend days together. Some of my training runs were harder than any ultra race I’ve done and I did use a couple 50ks and a marathon as training. Most of my weekend long runs were hilly trails but knowing my race was going to be flat, I did run a few long flat road runs.

The temps were nice and peaked at high 70’s, not too cold at night. I used the cooling system I learned while crewing at Badwater. Cold wet bandana on neck, ice under hat, and ice cold drink every mile until 6 p.m. Two days before the race I got a sore throat and lost my voice. Within about 3 hours of running, I was having difficulty eating, even gels. I had the gag factor and felt nauseated after everything I swallowed. I’m usually a pig at a race and can eat anything any time. I didn’t even want to drink my Hammer electrolytes. Another runner suggested I stick to fruit and water. I could get half a banana down reluctantly, lots of fresh oranges from the orange trees on the course, water and a salt pill every hour. Even though I gagged, spit, and groaned through the night I did not let it slow me down. I remember the first time I said I was sleepy and it was already midnight. This made me so happy I woke up a bit. Throughout the night, I sipped soda, cold coffee with creamer and chewed caffeine gum two times. Not a lot of calories in and not many potty breaks. I wasn’t bloated so we weren’t concerned.

After about 27 miles, I did get hot spots and quickly applied bandaids. Two on each foot in exact same places appeared at different times. I changed my socks often too. I brought quite a few pairs of thin socks thinking due to heat I would like these best. Thin socks on a mostly flat hot race did not work for me. I loved my thicker socks. The NG course offers various textures such as sandy, bumpy grass (the worst), dirt, and black top.

Sunrise is a magical time during this distance. We even had a rooster to let us know.  I couldn’t stop looking up at the blue sky, white puffy clouds and then that one black cloud. It rained lightly for less than an hour. I did have different pacers with me all through the night. A crew/pacer arrived in the morning and two of her suggestions gave me new pep. First was applesauce. Man, never did cold applesauce taste so good. With 15 miles left, she asked if I listened to music while running and I said, “no.” She then shared how she doesn’t either but used music in her 100 mile race and it helped. We grabbed my ipod that I did bring just in case. Who knew?! Listening to music made me forget any discomfort. I was so excited to be almost done and finishing an hour and a half faster than expected. I let it rip. I was singing and dancing my way to the finish, holding back the tears. I had a lot of ultra running buddies at this race that would stand up and cheer for me every time I came through the barn. I couldn’t believe I was actually going to finish and finish strong passing a couple runners in the end.

At 26:17, I accepted my buckle and cried while my friends snapped photos. I had no leg pain during the whole race but as soon as I stopped, some muscles stiffened in areas all new to me. Oh, and my cold came rushing in full force. Legs and feet are golden but my cold is kicking my butt.

That’s the race report about me. A whole other race report can be written about the Nanny Goat race itself. The horse ranch, the race director, the other runners all make for a family event with lots of quirky endurance run nuts and big smiles. Endorphin Dude changed capes throughout 24 hours and Ed Ettinghausen memorized everyone’s name, giving every runner a shout-out every time he passed you. I love my ultra family. My first buckle is baby blue with a goat on it…I’ll take that!

Kista Cook

Kista’s Website & Race Medal Racks for Purchase

Nanny Goat 100 Mile Ultra Marathon Race Website

Posted in Race Reports, Ultra Marathon2 Comments

San Diego Rock n’ Roll Marathon 2011

Kenya’s Terfa Negari Wins 2011 Rock n’ Roll San Diego Marathon (Results)

Kenya’s Terfa Negari won the 2011 Rock n’ Roll San Diego Marathon on Sunday, June 5, 2011, with a finishing time of 2:11:16.

Ethiopian Tesfaye Sendeku came in second place with a time of 2:12:21.

Negari’s fellow countryman Gilbert Chepkwony took home third with a strong showing at 2:12:49.

Top 5 Rock n’ Roll San Diego Marathon Results

  1. Terfa Negari (Kenya) – 2:11:16
  2. Tesfaye Sendeku (Ethiopian) – 2:12:21
  3. Gilbert Chepkwony (Kenya) – 2:12:49
  4. Christopher Torotich (Kenya)  – 2:14:16
  5. Luke Humphrey (United States) – 2:14:37

The Rock n’ Roll San Diego Marathon winner was Russian Buzunesh Deba in 2:23:31.

Fellow Ethiopian Misiker Mekonnen was the second female finisher across the line at 2:25:20.

Kenyan Helena Kirop was third with a time of 2:27:00

Top 5 Rock n’ Roll San Diego Marathon Results

  1. Buzunesh Deba (Ethiopia) – 2:23:31
  2. Misiker Mekonnen (Ethiopia) – 2:25:20
  3. Helena Kirop (Kenya) – 2:27:00
  4. Olena Shurkhno (Ukraine) – 2:28:33
  5. Salina Kosgei (Kenya) – 2:28:33

American Meb Keflezighi won the Rock n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon race, run at the same time as the full marathon, with a time of 1:02:40.

Gina Slaby, fromt he United States Navy, was the female Half Marathon winner with a time of 1:16:33.


Posted in Marathon, Results0 Comments

22-Year Old Runner Dies at ‘13.1 Chicago’ Half Marathon

The Chicago Sun-Times is reporting that a 22-year old man died while running the 13.1 Chicago Half Marathon on Saturday in Chicago.

The weather reached the mid 80’s towards the end. Temperatures for the race started at 79 and rose to around 86.  The race provided over 10 water stations along the course.

The race started under a yellow flag ‘be cautious, drink water, and pace yourself,’ before turning to a red flag ‘where clocks were turned off,’ before the race was black flagged ‘race cancelled.’

11 runners were taken to local hospitals due to heat related problems.

The Chicago Marathon faced similar issues a couple of years back when that race was also black flagged. Organizers for that race where ill-prepared and didn’t provide nearly enough water for racers that day.

Our condolences go out to the friends and family of the runner!

Posted in Half Marathon, Running0 Comments

Pippa Middleton Triathlon – GE Blenheim Triathlon

Pippa Middleton Finishes GE Blenheim Triathlon (Photo)

Royal sister-in-law Pippa Middleton, the younger sister of Kate ‘Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’ Middleton’s, finished the GE Blenheim Triathlon in Woodstock, England earlier today.  She was part of a triathlon relay team. Pippa did the 5K run at the end of the triathlon according to the Mirror.

Captured in the warm sun Pippa finished the 5km run leg in a respectable 25:30. Her team, called SJP, finished the full triathlon – a gruelling 750m swim, 20km bike ride and then 5km run – in 1:27:32.

The English socialite/party planner/partier definitely shows the USA version, Paris Hilton, that you can still be fit, athletic, and inspire a nation even when you put the Patrón down.  The closest Hilton or Kim Kardashian come to being athletic is in their choice of professional athletes they date.

This was NOT Pippa’s first triathlon.  She has completed one before.  Sporty-Royal Spice finished the Blenheim full triathlon in 2009 with a time of 1:26:01 according to official race results.

Pippa Middleton Rocks Highland Cross 50 Mile Duathlon

[image: Hollyscoop]

Posted in Celebrities, Triathlon2 Comments

Chris Estes 2010 Winchester Southern Plunge Marathon

Marathons & Ultra Marathons this Weekend (June 4-5, 2011)

Here is a quick look at some of the big marathon and ultra marathon races taking place this weekend in the United States.

June 4-5, 2011 Races

Saturday, June 4

Green River Marathon (Kent to Alki, Washington) – Results Page

Newport Marathon (Newport, Oregon) – Results Page

North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Miler, 50K, Marathon, & Half (Washington, D.C.) – Results Page

Sunday, June 5

Casper Marathon (Wyoming) – Results Page

Deadwood Mickelson Trail Marathon (South Dakota) – Results Page

Minneapolis Marathon (Minneapolis, Minnesota) – Results Page

North Olympic Discovery Marathon (Sequim to Port Angeles, Washington) – Results Page

Rock N’ Roll San Diego Marathon & Half Marathon (San Diego, California) – Results Page

Steamboat Marathon & Half Marathon (Steamboat Springs, Colorado) – Results Page

Posted in Events, Marathon, Running, Ultra Marathon0 Comments

Beth McCurdy Umstead 100 Mile Ultra Marathon 2011

Saltines, Ginger Ale, & an Indomitable Will (Umstead 100 Mile Ultra Marathon)

Saltines, Ginger Ale, & an Indomitable Will
(Finishing the 2011 Umstead 100 Mile Ultra Marathon)

Barely moving my legs, I think about my breathing and how labored it is. At times, I’m preoccupied with inhaling and exhaling. It’s so loud and disturbed sounding. I wonder why I’m breathing like this and whether or not it’s helpful. I’m also curious as to what my pacer Kelley, is thinking. For about two seconds, I’m slightly embarrassed by my noisiness. By the third second, I could care less what she thinks or what anyone else thinks.

I ask myself, “Do I really need to be breathing this heavily?” So, I stop breathing heavily and settle down by focusing on each step. I’m amazed by how ponderous each step feels and how variable my rhythm is at this point. I know I’ve become slow, but the reality is it’s so slow that I’d rather not know my pace. Deliberately focusing on my steps causes my feet to hurt even more, so I decide that it might help if I resume the heavy breathing again.

When walking uphill, I’m taken aback by the strong pull in my neck and upper shoulders. I’m recalling that only a mere 10 miles ago, my neck wasn’t even bothering me at all. The pain is not unbearable but it forces me to stop and self-message on several occasions. At one point, I’m wishing that I didn’t have so many layers of clothing on so that I could really penetrate into the muscles to loosen them up. My mind wanders back to the car ride to Raleigh when I remember thinking that I really hope that this tight neck won’t be a problem in my event tomorrow. Being the overly confident and optimistic person that I can be at times, I shrugged it off, so to speak. I tell myself that by the morning, the neck will be fine. The neck will be fine.

At the final aid station before the finish, I’m wondering how in the world I’m going to get up the next climb. Even early on in the race, this hill is difficult to walk. I’m depleted and need to do something to feel better. I ask my pacer, Kelley, if she could please get me some crackers and ginger ale at this aid station. I’m really thinking that a couple of crackers will help me get up that next climb. I sit in the chair and Kelley hands me Mountain Dew and some saltine crackers. I’m finding it very challenging to place the crackers in my mouth. They are sticking to my lips and mouth so I decide that it’s critical to swallow Mountain Dew and eat the cracker simultaneously. This sort of works.

I remember the aid station volunteer chatting me up about KEYS100. He’s an ultra runner and was graciously volunteering the night shift at this aid station. I wanted to chat with him. I wanted to smile and be friendly. But swallowing crackers and getting up that hill were the only things on my mind. I had to let him know in a courteous and desperate sort of way, that talking to him was not an option at this point. I’m on mile 94.5. I have 5.5 miles left.

Every single bit of every part of me is going to be used up to get through the next 5.5 miles. I know that I can do this. I don’t question as to whether or not I can finish. My brain and body have to go beyond what they want to do. I have no choice but to finish and I ask God for him to continue to keep me strong. Not finishing the event was never an option in my mind. I had everything I needed: My pacer who has taken care of me from 50 miles on, two crackers and some Mountain Dew in my stomach, and just 5.5 miles left. 5.5 miles to the finish line of the Umstead 100 Endurance Run.

Getting up from that chair was not that difficult. I knew that the longer that I sit in the chair, the longer I’m out in the cold dark and the farther away I am from the finish line. On any other day of my life, even when I’m having a really bad running day, 5.5 miles would be fairly effortless. On this day, 5.5 miles is an infliction of pain on my body and I’m not looking forward to it.

Getting up the series of climbs that I was so concerned about was arduous, to say the least. My neck and shoulders were throbbing and plodding uphill felt like my quads were being crushed with every step. Even though I looked forward to the downhill because I could actually run, I needed to tiptoe and blurt out with every step, “Ouch, Ouch, Ouch…”. My feet were sore and tired. If they could talk, they would be telling me to sit my butt down and enough already.

Even though the temperature was around forty degrees, if felt like below zero. I already had on a tank top in addition to three long sleeve layers at this point, however, I was shivering uncontrollably. Kelley had a green hooded coat and generously gave it to me. I zipped it all the way up and pulled the hood over my head. Running with a heavy headlamp and hood was confining but getting my body warmer was a higher priority. Moreover, I discovered that picking up the pace would help warm the body so I forced to do this at times when we were on flatter sections of the course.

With just a few miles left, I kept asking Kelley if were getting closer. Even though this was my eighth time running this loop, I still could not recall how much longer we had until the finish line. Knowing that we were getting closer, I attempted to run rather than walk. If I only walk, it will take longer to get there. I needed to make myself run.

Everyone seeks some form of comfort upon finishing an extreme endurance effort such as this-perhaps gatorade, food, a bathroom, or a clothing change. I asked Kelley if she could please send me straight to the lodge by the fire upon finishing. I need to get warm. She reassured me that she would take care of me and not to worry. Her presence at this point put my mind to ease and the notion of being out on the course alone was a daunting one.

Running on the half mile rocky section to the finish was painful yet exhilerating. I kept asking Kelley, “Am I really finishing?, Are we really there?” Kelley responded with a resounding, “Yes! I’m so proud of you!”. On this final stretch, she screamed “Woohoo!!” to volunteers, crews, and other runners, letting everyone know that I am finishing 100 miles. As I crossed the finish line, I was filled with a variety of emotions. I looked at my watch and noticed that I finished in twenty hours and thirty-eight minutes. I felt overjoyed, wipped out, accomplished, thankful for Kelley, borderline hypothermic, and a a little delirious. I was overwhelmed yet quite calm and in need of warmth. I achieved what I set out to do and never gave up. I finished my second 100 mile foot race.

Beth McCurdy
Umstead 100 Mile Ultra Marathon (2011)

2011 Umstead 100 Mile Ultra Marathon Race Results

Posted in Running, Ultra Marathon0 Comments

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