Monday, July 13, 2009

Hardrock the easy way

Heading down to Silverton I always knew it was possible that I wouldn't get in, but definitely thought the odds were in my favor going the other way. After the race check in on Thursday I had moved up from #6 to #2 on the waitlist. Everybody showed up this year, go figure. But wait, there's still one last chance. On race morning everyone is required to sign in between 5 and 5:45am, should two people not show up for some reason (it's happened in the past) then I would be in. Friday morning I woke up and prepared as if I would be running 100 miles in the San Juans. Peter came with me to wait nervously in the gym, several people around us knew the situation I was in and kept their fingers crossed for me. I must have looked at my watch every 30 seconds in those twenty minutes that I sat there. Then at 5:45am the RD stood up on a chair and loudly called out two names, names of runners that had not checked in. I jumped up and tore my jacket off as everyone around me told me "this is it, you're in". Then two "absent-minded" runners remembered they had forgot to check in and no one got off the "list".

I was a little sad, but I had a not-so-bad backup plan, pacing Scott Jaime from Ouray to Tellride. Scott is a very accomplished ultra-runner and an old friend of mine, so I was honored that he would have me along on one of his goal races for the year. Scott ran a tremondous race completing the course in 27:47 putting him in 4th place, his race report covers all the details so I won't bother giving you the blow by blow. Nor will I share the experience I had getting over Virginius Pass, some things you just have to see or do to believe.

What I will say is that the Hardrock is simply unbelievable. The course, the competitors, and the entire support crew make it a truly special event. I'll be back, but I'm not so sure that I'll be going down if I'm still on the waitlist before the race, the mental rollercoaster is just to much. Thanks to my family for being so supportive, to Peter and his family for making the trip so enjoyable and thanks to the rest of the MRC for pushing me through all the training to get ready, that was the best part.

Finally congratulations to Karl Meltzer who set a new course record in 24:38 for the counter-clockwise direction, that was an incredible effort!


Karl said...

Ouch. I vote that you get an automatic entry next time for enduring the waitlist.

mrcandgladtobe said...