Dare Mighty Things

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those timid spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat." -Teddy Roosevelt

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Odd Double

Exeter, NEW HAMPSHIRE--This weekend had to have been one of the strangest doubles I've ever done. Death Race yesterday, Exeter Trail Race today. No matter how sore my back was this morning there was no missing Ri & Sarah's debut as RD's (and our own event). Last night I had tentatively made the decision to skip the 10 miler I had pre-registered for and instead race the 4 miler. When I arrived in Exeter a little after 8:00 AM and found Steve Wolfe he helped change my mind. According to Steve he too had heavy legs and a sore back and was just "planning to run eeeeeeasy". As the saying goes, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Anyone who has raced Steve knows his idea of "easy" isn't the same as most mere mortals. I was once again suckered, although he actually did me a favor. At the gun he was off like a shot. You would have thought he was racing the 4 miler! I did mention to him before the start that the trail narrows to fairly tight singletrack several hundred meters from the start and that it's best to secure a position early. Right away the lead pack including Steve and local orienteering master (and fantastic runner) Ernst Linder broke away from me and never looked back. I kept them in sight for a while but by the 5 mile mark I didn't see a soul for the rest of the race...until the two leaders ran by me going in the opposite direction! Just as soon as they ran past I came up on teammate Mike Sallade (volunteering today after placing 4th in the Death Race yesterday) and asked him if I was going in the wrong direction. He shouted "NO!" and I was left to ponder what the heck was going on? After a minute or two when nobody else ran by I surmised they must have taken a wrong turn. By the second half of the race I found a zone and quite astonishingly felt great...legs strong, no health issues at all. I finished unofficially right around 1:20 and 6th place overall (4th if you DQ the two guys who finished 1 & 2 and looped a couple miles of the course in the wrong direction). Steve Wolfe, despite his heavy legs and back spasms, taped in 3rd place overall but took home the winner's prize money when the top 2 wrong-way runners were DQ'd. Oh, and for future reference...Steve always races hard even when he's racing easy. Finally, it was also great to see so many teammates show up to race and volunteer including those I've mentioned as well as Maddie, Karen, Hayley, John Skewes, Jen Smith, Leslie Dillon (who won the 4 miler race outright!), and Joe Merriam.

PS. Ri & Sarah did a fantastic job as RD's and represented acidotic RACING incredibly well. I don't think I've ever done a 10 mile trail run that went by so fast! The course was exceptionally well marked (despite the wrong way runners) and simply a joy to race. When word of this race gets around it's sure to grow in '10.

Next up: MDI Relay, Bar Harbor, MAINE

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