Monday, August 29, 2011

The Great Adventure Challenge
The Conclusion
(finally)

So, about 1.5 hours after the start of the race, I rolled into the bike to run transition tearing complete ass.  I think that I kind of freaked the race volunteers out because I did a near full speed cyclocross style dismount as I came to the tent while a couple of volunteers were furiously waving their arms trying to get me to not ride full speed through the crowd at the transition.  Such amateurs... :)

Before the race I had stashed my shoes and my very own camp chair under the tent at the end.  It was in the shade as well as at the end of the tent that I'd be coming into.  Or so I though.  As I rushed into the tent I realized that I had put it all the way at the opposite end and had to dash to my stuff to change.  Granted, the added distance was only about 100' total round trip but when you're trying to catch the leader, every second counts. 

damn shoe

Once to my chair, I quickly shed my helmet and jersey and go to pull off my shoes when I realize that my right buckle is stuck.  I tried frantically to extricate myself and yelled out "help" as if someone was going to rush to my rescue and then managed to tip over in my chair as I scrambled to pull the shoe free.  Marcy's running teammate and husband (not marcy's husband, the runners husband) came running over to help just as I was able to wrench my foot from the shoe.  Heidi's husband pointed out Mike at the top of the first slope (about 2-3 minutes ahead) and said I could catch him because he was already walking so I hauled ass out of the transition, passed up a water feed from the volunteers (so many and so helpful) and headed up the mountain.

Remembering last year's race, I felt like I left a bit too much energy in the tank on the run so for this year I decided to absolutely kill myself on the climb and run a bunch of it.  Right until I hit the first steep slope.  About 100 yards in, the grade kicks up and a fast-ish hike ensues.  I desperately wanted to run but my labored breathing said otherwise so I settled in and hoped that Mike would falter.

the only flat portion of the course.  Right at the beginning.
I had forgotten to grab my from the bike at the transition but I'm sure the grades reach well into the 30's and their were some spots where simply walking was tough.  By the 2/3's mark of the climb I had pretty much given up hope of catching Mike since I didn't seem to be reeling him in and then shortly after he came running past heading for the finish.  We gave a quick fist bump and went our separate ways.

Shortly after, I was rounding the lift station at the top and heading to the bottom. The run down the mountain is the easiest part of the day as long as you have good traction and you pay attention but it's also where you do the most damage. For days after the race I could barley walk. Read about last year's experiences to give you an idea.

I finally crossed the finish line at 2:02 a solid three minutes behind Mike who set a new course record. Nice job Mike. I'll be gunning for you next year! 

Marcy's team kicked some ass finishing mid pack off all of the teams but grabbed the fasted women's team title by a solid 20 minutes.  I think they're hooked.

Happy couple.

Marcy picking up her team's hardware.



4 comments:

Jason said...

way to drag the report out for a week. nice result too.

rick is! said...

trust me, I'd like to have wrapped it up sooner but work is a beyotch recently.

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