Friday, July 17, 2009

Races Everywhere


Guess where I am? I'm back in Lake Tahoe, home of Western States 100. Why, you might ask. Well it's because Lake Tahoe is also home of the Tahoe Rim Trail 100 and the TransTahoe Swim Relay race.

So I rode up with my friend Samantha to the Tahoe Rim Trail registration, she's signed up for the 50k. The race also offers a 50-mile option. I stopped by to greet friends and wish those running a good time and a great race. That will be the extent of my involvement with TRT however because I'm really here to support Jessica, Jeff and the rest of the "Poyo Del Mar" swim relay team for their swim across Lake Tahoe. It's a 6-person relay team and they take turns swimming until they cover the 11-mile/17.6 kilometer swim. I'm not swimming, are you kidding. I'm just here to hangout, take pictures and guard the beer cooler. Strange to be spending time in a swim event instead of an ultra but I'm making up for last year. It's also Jessica's birthday weekend and I owe her big for being my one person super crew at San Diego 100. Last year I also came up with them but ran the TRT100 and missed out on the weekend celebrations. They saved me birthday cake but I was too tired to come back to the house after the finish. I rented a room at the race hotel and crashed for a few hours before attending the awards ceremony and heading home that evening. So this year I get to make up for what I missed. It is weird though to be in the middle of these two events and to be merely a spectator. I'll be thankful when the temps rise to 90+ as forecasted.

Shout Outs!
Closer to home is the Vineman Half-Ironman Triathlon, an event I have volunteered for a couple of times. Lots of great tri-club folks racing. I wish them a good race a good race as well. In Vermont, my buddy Bob Gentile will be starting the Vermont 100. I am wishing him a BLISTER FREE race.

This past week the Badwater 135 was held, hotter than the previous year from what was reported - temps up to 127 degrees fahrenheit. Woof. Fellow San Francisco ultra guy Jon Gunderson crossed the line at about 31.5 hours. I believe that is a personal best for him. It was his fourth Badwater and he has gotten faster at each running. Buddy Tony Portera was there too, his first time and he finished. I heard a report that at 50 miles he passed out and puked on himself. I guess his crew dusted him off and he ran another 85-miles for the finish. Can you imagine?! Plain craziness but don't quote me on that, I have yet to verify the story with Tony. Last weekend, right before Badwater was the Hardrock 100. It is officially the hardest 100-miler we have in this country, don't ask me about the unofficial one - you don't want to know if you didn't know already. It takes most runners two days to finish, kind of like Badwater. This one is in the mountains of Colorado and a lot of running between 10,000-14,000 ft. Big, big hills in thin air, some you have to scramble up on all fours. It is a mountain goat's dream. Olga finished that race. Always a step ahead that woman. Hardrock is a dream race of mine.

Well that's it for now. Camera screen is shot from the dunking at the river crossing at Western States but the pictures are coming out okay. I downloaded the contents of the memory card to my comp and they look good. I'm just shooting blind is all.

See you all on the other side of this weekend.


  1. I've always wanted to at least walk the Hardrock 100. Just a beautiful place to be.

    Don't forget to sneak a beer, or three, when you're guarding the cooler.

  2. Beer cooler guard is a very, very important job. : ) Have a fun weekend!

  3. Whenever I read about all these ultra races from you, I feel I could accomplish my dream, if I put my mind and heart to it. I've always been in pain in the last few ks of my longer races (the half and the 30k), and I know I will be in pain in my attempt for a full. The thing is, now I know that the pain I may experience is nothing compared to the extreme mental and physical challenges that ultra runners go through in these long ultra races. Glad to hear you're just taking it easy and enjoying yourself in the sidelines instead of being a participant. When is your next big race? Take care and have fun.

  4. It is good it is not me guarding the beer cooler... that would be kind of like letting the fox watch over the hen house! :)

    Sounds like you are having a great time, and I hope your camera keeps working. You take the best pictures. Enjoy!

  5. If it's (Hardrock 100) a dream race for you, then it probably won't be long before you do it.
    Swimming across Lake Tahoe? I'd probably pass on that one too. LOL

  6. running the Badwater 135 is really a hardcore stuff. being there last year as a witness/spectator proved the intensity of heat of the sun and the desert. i guess, the first one-third of the race is the part that is too hot.

  7. With your running experience, you can do Hardrock anytime.