Wednesday, August 12, 2009

John Denver, Monster Mix & Stank: A Wild West Relay Race Report, Part I

Where shall I begin? This trip was only a few days, but it felt like a week! So much to catch y'all up on... Here we go for Part I of our journey to the wild wild west...

Last Thursday Shannon and I set out for our wild west adventure and made our first stop from Charleston the Chicago airport. Where we saw these:

Yes, those are man legs. And no, I have NO idea what the hell those shoes are or why he's wearing them. It was odd, very odd.

While we were waiting we took a few pictures...clearly, I am not good at this.

Ok, this one's better. Our flight from Chicago to Denver ended up being re-routed up to Nebraska due to storms. Luckily we didn't have to land there, we just, uh, hovered. When we finally landed in Denver I learned that Alesha's flight had also been re-routed, but that they had landed (just to refuel) and she was in Amarillo! Luckily though once we got off the plane and wandered around looking for our ride, she texted to say she had landed in Denver. Whew!

We wandered around looking for Julie and Jennifer, who were picking us up in one of our rented vans. We finally found them and then Ryan...and then Alesha! We were on our way to pick up Dionne (aka Steve) at his place in downtown Denver. To make a long story short, we didn't end up making it to Fort Collins (and to the rest of our teammates who were already there) until after midnight Thursday night!

But we were up bright and early Friday morning and headed off to the start! Our start time was 7:50 AM...which we were to later learn was WAY too late.

Van #2 (our van!) loading up around 6 AM Friday morning.

The Dangerous Dozen ready to roll! Don't we all look so awake?

Alesha is ready to rock it!

We arrived at the start and began the check-in process and the ultimately more important process of decorating our vans. This was key!

Van #2! Our lovely minivan for a few days...

Van #1! Courtesy of Jeri's mad van decorating skills!

10 chicks and 2....? (Continue on with that thought and you will get another team's actual name...better than Dangerous Dozen?!)

They interviewed Bobbi about our team before we started. Apparently our team motto was "Get it!" and we are all from 12 different states. Even though three of us were from Colorado, two from South Carolina, two from get the idea :) Somehow word spread of this "Dangerous Dozen" for all over the US...we were famous!

Then our first runner, Melissa, was off! (She's in the blue shorts.)

For those of you who don't know too much about how a relay race works, here is the low down:

Our team had 12 runners total. Each runner was responsible for running 3 legs of varying distances. There were 2 vans with 6 runners each, one van was the active van (meaning they were currently out running their 6 legs) while the other was an inactive van (meaning they were driving ahead to the next major exchange to wait on the active van to hand off the "baton" to their next runner). Once the active van passed off to the inactive van (i.e. runner #6 passed off to runner #7, or runner #12 passed off to #1) the inactive would now be active. Make sense?

Our start time of 7:50 was determined by our projected finish time. The faster the team was projected to finish, the later on Friday they would start. They had teams starting as early as 5 AM...which we would later come to learn that we should have started around then!

So here are the ladies of Van #2 waiting for Van #1 to finish up their first leg.

Cynthia (the hill goddess), Jennifer (the crazy good, crazy fast runner), me and Alesha (the DJ's assistant and our awesome last runner!).

Here is our #6 runner Julie coming in to meet our vans 1st runner of the day!

As Julie comes in, Cynthia leaves out! And Van #2 is on the move.

Cynthia is a ROCKSTAR! Our frist few legs were flat with some rolling beautiful is this scenery?

Unfortunately, our #8 runner Steve got injured on his first between Alesha, Jenn and I we ran the remainder of his legs.

When it came around to my turn, I was studying my leg map and realized that Jenn (who was out there running) had mistakenly ran my leg! I normally wouldn't have cared...but here was the leg I was supposed to run:

And here was the leg I ended up running...

But I rocked it! Not sure of my time, but I think it was around a 10 to 10:30 minute mile. Not too bad for crazy hills and the elevation!

Stay tuned for Part II!


  1. So pretty! I can't wait to read about the rest!

  2. I love this! It sounds like a ton of fun, and I'm really impressed that you were gutsy enough to do it!

  3. Wow! That sounds like an awesome experience! I love your pictures. The short hair cut still looks so cute and chic!

  4. Those shoes... I HAVE NO WORDS!!!

  5. Loving the report. I am getting so many tips just from looking at the photos. Can't wait to do the Florida version in November!

  6. Loving the recap! The pics are great!!

  7. Ahhh you're such a stud. That one pic makes you look like you're flying. PRetty sweet. :)

  8. I can't even imagine what it must have been like to run with that beautiful scenery! cant wait for part II!!

  9. Love the pictures! Seriously, you should consider running the Florida Ragnar Relay in November (I'm obviously desperate for team members, if I'm asking someone from S.C. to come to Florida....).

    You should take a look at my Wasatch Back Relay race report. The best part about these relays in the team costumes/vans. It makes it sooooo much fun!

  10. Awesome recap. Sounds like so much fun.

    Living in Colorado I get to enjoy that scenery all the time.

    Can't wait for the next post.

  11. Great pics and recap, that looks like an absolute blast. I am still loving your haircut by the way. Great job on rocking your longer-thank-expected (and hillier!) leg of the relay.

  12. Great recap! Can't wait to hear how it all ends :)

  13. Wow, I'd love to do a relay like this sometime.

    Can't wait for race report part II.

  14. wow you make my report look like a fly by! I seriously hope we all do this again...ok on to part two

  15. I'm just catching up on your reports...It looks like SO much fun!! I would love to do something like this with fellow bloggers!

    Way to rock the VERY HARD section!