Wow, what a weekend. After a few months of solid training with some great mates, the weekend went well for most of us. Huge congrats to Beth and Brendan, two of the most humble legends in the game.
Drove up with Andy Bowen and grabbed some lunch before checking into Warners and repacking CP bags. I had decided this year to make the most of running mate Adam (Kaos) pacing after the state I have ended up in the last two years. Surely I could get a third finishers medal and make it 3 out of 5 GNW 100 milers? As the evil RD mentioned in the Race Briefing, this is the only event I have ever DNF’d. This race is tough with over 20,000ft of elevation.
The weather was perfect, the race start as laid back as the RD. Photo of me and Gordi at the relaxed start.
I had looked at Marg Chu’s splits from last year and had a wish to keep the momentum she had last year for my goal. If I could finish around 33hours I’d be a happy camper. I planned to get to CP 1 at 28.6 kms by 10.30am (4hrs 30 mins) and ran in with Kirrily after hooking up just after Heatons Gap. Best decision of the day. Talk about hooking up!
Out of CP 2 by 2pm and Basin by 8pm which could have been a disaster after Paul Every popped over with a Chardy for me…
Training on the course made navigation much easier and I knew Kirrily and I wouldn’t get lost.
We got to the 100km finish in under 17 hours and wondered what had happened to Ray as John (support) was nowhere to be seen at Yarramalong….. I picked up my pacer, Adam and keeping Kirrily with me made for a great night’s running… just needed one more bit of fun…..Sat in a chair next to some young thing and heckled him to come with the old bag until he got up and came with us….. Michael Hardie, you are made of tough stuff. We left Michael on the road after Ourimbah Creek and hoped he’d not pull out at Somersby. So happy to see he finished. The Dead Horse Creek section was tough. We lost the trail for a wild 5 mins or so. Very happy to have not been on my own. Adam had the maps on his Garmin and came in handy!
All was going well and I was pretty excited to leave Somersby still with my head torch! Wow… happy to have got so far in the night! All I needed to concentrate on was keeping the food down. Eat.
The last CP at Mooney Mooney was a welcome sight and I just wanted to get onto the last section and not look back. With my sunnies and visor in the Somersby bag which I didn’t think about (being dark) Emma (Mrs Joey) donned me in her stuff and I was on my merry way. I was grateful to have Adam with us as I kept questioning the trail. I had trained on this section but the tired mind was playing games and some sections did not look familiar.
It wasn’t until after Mt Wondabyne that I started to want to sit down. Past the tip and Adam, Kirrily and myself cracked open my coke. It was heating up. The kilometres from around 165 to 172 were ugly. There was not much talk happening and we all just silently plugged away …. slowly. That section was nasty. Once across the road and onto the single track I was excited and started to trot. Glad I couldn’t see Kirrily’s face. We were going to finish well and it was time to just get it over and done with.
The last sign to Patonga and back on trail, I grabbed Kirrily and told her we’d done it. I think she was wanting quiet time to reflect… and I wrecked her special time. There was something fabulous about how we’d stayed together without any plan to do so. Back near CP 2 I had mentioned how cool it would be to have a like minded runner to share the weekend. We hit the beach and seriously joked about pushing each other into the water…. just couldn’t be bothered. We both hit that silly little sign that means so much to those that attempt this race with 31:43 on the clock. Better race than I could ever have imagined. 3rd Female over the line… A podium finish!! Huge thanks to both Kirrily and Adam for the most fun you can have in this event. Happy, happy.
Injuries… not one blister. A black eye from a stupid fall between Cp1 and 2. and 2 Leech bites… need to rub Gurney Goo around my ankles next time, not just my feet. Leeches don’t like the stuff.
Very excited to try the 2013 Hoka Rapa Nui Trail shoe. They made me go fast!
I’d had some great training runs with a bunch of awesome people and it appears we had luck on our side. Joe, Ron, Rob, Allison (woo hooo!!) and Mike in the miler, Kieron and Sarah Jane in the 100km all successful finishers
Very happy to see Whippet continue his run, what a gentleman. Spud, Tall Geoff and Nikolay, awesome results.
My man of the day was Damien Smith… 3rd place, no pacer and not from Sydney.
Gutsy efforts from Gordi and Ridler. Mr Determination Luis told me when I passed him before the Basin that he was pulling out….that tablespoon of concrete and another 100kms to run…. Huge congrats for getting to the finish!
Disappointed for Ray and Bill, I really hope they both front up next year. It’s bad enough not having Blue Dog run but loved seeing him at the finish.