there will be quite a bit of that. it is for the new racers, and participators (like me) - of course there will be some up-and-coming youngsters that are getting their time in, and will upgrade in-season - and the occasional high-powered roadie that falls on the first root, then flies by on the first flat.
the race-inside-the-race will develop, and you'll get to chase, and hold people off. probably end up with 50ish participants if the weather is good.
in any case, they put on a great event around the event. Watching @MadisonDan master the donut-direct-piehole hand-up is priceless.
Speaking as a Cat 5 currently doing the grind towards the back of the pack, I regret not racing sooner and just committing to a race. Think of it as just a higher intensity 40-minute workout with a ton of friends cheering you on. Plus you're riding bikes on some fun, predominantly off-road terrain (even on a mountain bike! I did my first race at Marty Cross running a Reba fork and 2.4 Ardents and had a blast, another guy was running a Bronson). Sure, there are the top guys who are blazing fast but overall there's plenty of races within the race to challenge yourself and have fun while doing.
I put off racing 2 years after doing Marty Cross before lining up again, thinking I was going to train hard for the next season and watched it come and go, I finally committed myself to the season and learn and train along the way. I want to join the "walk the hill" category too! At lucky charm there was a climb on the back side of the course that I just could not ride so I just walked/jogged it along with other guys in our race. Even with the top pro riders, there's even strategies that dictate running over riding sections! Just making forward progress is all it takes in the race, which I realized quickly is much different coming from a MTB background where one wants to ride everything clean.
Plus around 9:10am your day is free to hang out at the fall festival, which I've been hearing a ton of hype, watch the other races go off and just take in the local cross scene; which has been awesome and welcoming to all. Either way, hope to see you out there this year or next year!