As it usually does, pacing this past weekend went great. Harrison did, in fact, run me into the ground, but I was able to keep up and literally paced his race from mile 66 on. I saw Harrison at mile 25.5 (Blubber Creek AS) and he and Jon were looking strong. By the next time I saw them (Mile 50) both boys looked a little worked and I had the sense that Harrison had a rough patch sometime between 25.5 and 50, as often happens during these distances.
Around 9PM (plus or minus), Harrison's mom received a text from Kathleen in Pennsylvania relaying the message that Harrison was feeling good, was 2 miles out, and not to go easy on him. "OK!" I readied my hydration pack and started mentally preparing for a long night (AKA downed 16oz of coffee/hot cocoa). The boys did look good and headed out. We were to see Harrison's parents at mile 90.
Harrison and Jon were a pleasure (ish) to pace. They are like Tom and Jerry chit chatting back and forth (not as much as usual). I felt a little left out (mostly because I was listening to music in one ear...a tactic to lessen the blow of the sound of vomiting), but realized I probably didn't want to know what they were talking about anyway. Harrison did exactly as he said he would; latch right on to my pace and Jon did the same to Harrison. I fell in the dust once (the boys did not) and I got us lost once (the boys found us). GREAT job, right? To be fair, we didn't get too far off course and it WAS marked poorly at a sharp left turn.
Proctor Canyon was mile 80 (ish) and by this time Harrison was feeling a little sick and didn't want to wait around the AS very long. He was now running on broth, Mountain Dew, and Lifesaver mints. We left Jon caring for his battered feet and off we went! I will say that Harrison and I RAN all flats and downhills. I can honestly say that. We hiked some seriously sneaky uphills.
After a serious climb we descended into King's Campground where Sami woke from a nap by the fire and Harrison's dad met us. A few quiet words were spoken between them and off we went. This next section was HARD. There was about 5 miles uphill, followed by what was supposed to be a 5 mile descent into the finish. Poor Harrison... I counted down the miles for him and when the finish line didn't come in any sort of timely fashion after my "1 mile left!" proclamation WE were ticked. At this point we had no idea how much further we had to go, so Harrison tucked behind me and we ran.
All in all, Harrison was a rock star and I will give myself some credit for a job well done pacing. We passed some serious people and they never passed us back! Harrison ended up finishing in 9th place with a 24:34. His goal was a sub-24, but, by my watch, the course was 4 miles long. Matt Gunn claims 2, but I'm sticking with 4...maybe it was the little bit we were lost that put us over. In my mind, Harrison accomplished greatness!
- Dust was everywhere! Sage was Pigpen from Charlie Brown and got a bath in the lake prior to leaving
- My shins hurt from sunburn
- I am still catching up on sleep
- That is all.