Monday, September 15, 2008

UPDATED: Wings takes flight at Reach the Beach Relay

Holy crap. That’s about all one can say after participating in their first Reach the Beach Relay. What a bizarre, fun, strange, roller coaster of an event this 200-mile relay from Cannon Mountain to Hampton Beach is. But let’s back up a bit first.

It all started when NETT’s Karyn Miller-Medzon recruited a few of us NETTers to fill out her usual WINGS team for RTB. After a couple unplanned injuries and absences, WINGS basically became a team very heavy on NETT’s extended family (and we mean family). Here’s the roster we wound up with:
Van 1: Crazy Dave, Karen R, Dima F, Karyn MM, and the two WINGS veterans Peter Evers and Jeannette Voas.
Van 2: Claire Scanlon (courtesy of Tina Wang), Mary Smith, Clare Smith (courtesy of Mary), Tom Dmukauskas (courtesy of Dima), Chrissy Durden and Martin Bures (courtesy of Chrissy).

Getting the picture yet? Lots of courtesy here. A diverse group of loosely connected folks who came together as a team and by the end of it…well we’ll get to that.

For the unitiated, it’s a 200-plus mile relay where teams can have up to 12 people running legs of various distances continuously across the state of New Hampshire. It takes hundreds of volunteers to pull this thing off…350 teams most with 12 people on them…running non-stop. It just seems like such a bad idea on so many levels, but I guess most of the funnest things usually do.

Crazy Dave started off at 2:40 p.m. Friday on the first leg from Cannon Mountain. Chrissy finished up more than 25 hours later in Hampton Beach. In between is a blur of long winding roads, yellow arrows we’ll see in our sleep for months, wet vans full of half-awake runners, headlamps and reflector vests and at least one irate father yelling at his son. There were some really really gutsy performances from all of our runners--nothing makes you dig a bit deeper than knowing your previous and next teammate are going to do the same. We had a lot of that. Karyn MM basically undid months of rehab to get to that last exchange zone of hers with Dima and Karen's help...Martin could barely walk after crushing his legs (pun intended-snore)...Peter produced more sweat than any single mammal should be allowed on his last leg...Tom defied the laws of physics and basically ran downhill on a steep steep uphill grade...the list goes on and on and on..every time someone did something great, the next person matched it and raised, right down to Chrissy's finishing kick that left us all in the dirt. It was great to see.

The end result? We finished in 25:36 which put us 26th out of 355 total teams. We were 9th in the mixed open category which accounted for 166 teams. That’s an average of 7:21/mile.
See full results here.

A huge thanks to Karyn MM for the work in organizing. The list of thanks goes a mile long, as these kinds of things don't just happen, but everyone knows who they are.

NOTE: For a slideshow of GREAT PICS from the Reach The Beach relay, check out Karyn's site here.

Passing time has no surprise
When pleasure found is my resource
I start to drift with the tide
Maybe I'll reach, I'll reach the beach
The Fixx

(With apologies to Talking Heads for ripping off their perhaps most overused lyrics in the history of music...just seemed to fit)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! Good work folks. Definitely looks like quite the experience. Rest up! You've earned it. -Jerry