After our hand off, we drove along the route to reach the second major exchange. We tried to get a little napping in and had a fun time getting to know one another and talking about the race, cheering on runners.
We stopped for gas and supplies (and Taha hitting on the girls!), then got to the exchange and rested. Pretty soon it was time for the guys to roll in and we started to worry about the weather forecast...heavy rain and winds ahead! Rex and Taha ran well on hilly segments but with no rain so we were hopeful...not to last!
I took the baton for leg 21 at around 3am and was off on a dirt road with lots of traffic in complete darkness (once again!) and had a hard time getting under 6:00 pace due to the road and traffic. About 2 miles in the sky opened up and rained buckets! My head lamp could only shine about a foot in front of me and was only good to try to see the puddles on the road! I ran 5.06 miles in 30:40. All our runners ran past the van at the exchange as the traffic jams were about half a mile long. The next runner would get out and run ahead to meet the incoming guy, then run up the road to wait for the van to drive by (did not even stop at the exchange).
Kerry took off in the rain and ran with it coming down most of his leg. David and Sean had much drier legs. David missed us in the traffic jam and instead hitchhiked to the major exchange and waited there with Sean as we tried to locate them (impressed that we found them and the van in the crowd!). Our preplanning for the known issues through here worked like a charm!
We then took off and used the alternate route to get to the next exchange.
Van 1 guys ran well and we met them at the last major exchange. As Mark B was coming in, the weather once again came up...30+ mph sustained winds! Rex and Taha ran well for their legs in wind and rain then I took the baton at around 8:30am for a 7.75 mile leg. I was battling swirling hurricane force winds and pretty much constant rain for the whole leg. I continued to push hard on my hardest leg. Overall time of 50:00 (weak!) but in tough conditions.
Kerry ran strong and then David got the brunt of the worst weather!...Driving 60+ mph wind and rain for about 3 miles of his 7 mile leg! The rain suddenly stopped but the wind kept strong for Sean and he brought it home in style! Due to his strong last leg, we finished as team in 19:59:57 for a 6:03 AP, 6th OA (1050 HTC teams) and 1st Master!
The finish line area was destroyed and closed due to the weather and the finish line changed locations as we went down to run Sean in so we missed him. But this team rocked!
Got to the hotel to clean up and hang with the guys before about 8 of us took off for Portland to catch flights home that night. Rex and I flew to Boise and spent the night, finally getting to a real bed about 35 hours after waking up Friday from our last real sleep.