Team 87, the Frenchies
Every long distance relay I've done has had it's own little hiccups and group chemistry, but like every one I've done, it this one tons of fun and plenty challenging.
The starting line at The Valley of Fire was really amazing. While I still wish I had just slept in and not gone to the start line to see the team off, I did enjoy the views through first section of the course.
We actually got started an hour later than our start time. The first van got a little lost and we missed our time. We did get to all get in costume and apply moustaches. Moustaches for everyone!
Because we were at the start line and the first van had a long section it felt like we waited at exchange 6 forever. Forrrreeeeverrrr. I've never been so happy to get started as when Roger can running through in all his shirtless glory.
I don't have a terribly lot of day time pictures. I kid you not, van 2 did more night time running than day time. Here's a tip--whenever, wherever you can get some shut eye in a long distance relay, do it. And make sure you are eating regularly. We had two regular meals at exchange 6 before we even started. I am a big fan of bagels, pringles, grapes, and string cheese.
Exchange 12 was pretty posh. It was at a resort or something. Unfortunately we did not stick around. They had some guy playing guitar Jack Johnson style. He was pretty good. There were probably 20 people dangling their feet in the hot tub which I called "foot soup". I didn't get in. We did eat there. Since we were so late coming in they had knocked all the food down to $5. It was good.
Here's another tip--move on to the next exchange you are starting at. It's easier to settle down and rest then get up shortly before the next van exchange then to rest and get up and drive to the next exchange. That's how people are late and runners stand around for 30 min waiting for the next van.
The second set of legs for my van was dead of night to sunrise. There was some wind that wasn't fun, but the temperature was still pretty good for running. It never really got warm. Maybe 62 tops Saturday. Very good for running.
Because of the after 5:00 rule that you have to wear all your reflective gear, Tiff & I got to run all 3 legs in full gear. I was pretty thrilled. Our van wore our costumes the 3rd leg. It was fun. We also passed on a schlacked baguette. Very fun. It was sticky from all the previous man handling before it got to me but it was worth it. We got a lot of cheering and comments in costume and with the baguette. "Go Frenchies" or "Go Baguette" was heard a lot. One person coming in was thrilled that they passed the "guy with the baguette".
It was actually the 3rd set that we started catching up to the back pack. I think I passed 5 or 6 people in my last leg.
It was nice to finish. I can't say enough about how awesome the team was. I loved everyone in my van. As I recall now, we spent most of the time laughing. I learned some new terminology as well. Thank you dirty Ragnar runners. The women are the worst. I had a lot of help organizing the team as well which is awesome. It's not easy to put these things together, but I think overall it was a success.
And most important I got my finishers medal and the Saints & Sinners medal. That was some serious bling I was wearing through the casino. Like Flavor Flav style.
I am super greatful to all the race directors, SWAT team, and numerous volunteers that put this event on. I help with it last year, and it is insane the amount of organzation, man/womanpower, and dedication that it takes. Bravo!