Sunday, August 10, 2008

2008 Stormy 100 miler

It has been a while since I have updated my blog. I have been busy with life and that may be a good excuse, but I think that mostly I was affected by the cancellation of Western States. It is hard to imagine that as a wife, crew and supporter of Gilles' running shenanigans I would be so affected. Anyways, I seem to have gotten over it. I think a combination of a good time at the Vermont 100 and my experience at Stormy have set me straight. My enthusiasm is back and I am ready to get back to blogging.

This weekend was the 2nd running of the Stormy 100. I was back at the Perth Aid Station and had a great time. Linda Machray and I were in charge of making sure the runners were well hydrated and taking in enough calories.
We spent times with the runners' crew. In a small race (only 29 started) you get to know the runners and the crew quite quickly. In particular, Don, who was out to support Ralp Hirt from California (71 yrs old), spent a great deal of time with us. Since the runners come to our aid station 4 times, he decided to just hang out with us and help where needed. Not only was he good company, he watched the aid station while Linda and I went to dinner. This was very much appreciated.

The runners were fantastic. It was great to see their enthusiasm no matter how tire, hungry, or sweaty. John Machray's arrival to Perth Drive after a little over 18 miles pretty much sums up the event. With a hop, skip and a jump, John came in putting on a bit of a show and giving us a big smile. When Linda gave him a hard time for his silliness, he proudly reminded us that at least he had his clothes on.

Gilles was silly from the beginning. For a minute, I thought he might miss the start. He was checking the air pressure on the tires of the car to make sure all was ok while I was on my own. So he wasn't able to jump the gun and get a head start like he did last year. Then, when he came into Perth Dr, he was happy to report he was running with a Virgin and that he wanted to spend the night with a virgin. All was good and they were sticking together until later in the race when he ditched her for another running partner, Carlos Castillo. They too were laughing up a storm and having a blast.

The Virgin was none other that Sylvie J. who was attempting her first 100 miler which is, of course, how she got nicknamed the virgin. It's really neat to see her perseverance and strength as she tackled the 100 mile distance. At each time we saw her, she was always appreciative of our help.

At night it was a bit tougher to keep awake, but the other crews kept us well entertained. We had soup for the runners as well as good words of encouragement. I even got to drain some When Baldwin came by, he changed his shoes and we found a nasty bloody blister. In a few minutes, I had his blisters drained and patched up and he was on his way. While we enjoyed the company of the runners, we tried to send them off on their way so they would not get too comfy in the chair and call it a day.

In the end, I had a great time. Gilles finished in 27 hours and 19 minutes alongside John. We were all proud to report that Sylvie was no longer a 100 miler virgin. In all 19 out 29 runners finished. The youngest was only 19 years old and the oldest was 59?. The winner blasted through with a finishing time of 17 hours and 39 min, rested a bit and then went out to support his girlfriend who was doing her first 50 miler.

1 comment:


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