Bourbon Chase album (updated with captions explaining the crazy) on the OUaL FB page
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I hope you guys liked the insight from Relay Rookies Mel and Dan in the Bourbon Chase recap. I knew they’d dig the team aspect and general debauchery that an overnight relay provides, but feeling their excitement before runs, seeing their smiles coming into the exchanges, and hearing about what a freaking blast they had made my whole weekend.
Being my fifth relay and a permanent member of Team Big White Van, it was a given I’d have a good time. Having Mel and Dan there added some extra special feel goods for sure, but I wanted to elaborate a bit on the other aspects of Bourbon Chase that didn’t make it into the recap that made the weekend what it was.
- Bourbon Chase puts on a damn good show. Six distilleries along the course (Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, Maker’s Mark, Four Roses, Wild Turkey, Woodford) and a finish line party on shut down Main St in downtown Lexington worth hanging around for. It takes a lot to convince tired, smelly, and hungry runners to hang out in the cold hours after finishing, but the beer tents, bourbon tastings, and live music did it.
- The course was perfectly marked – I don’t think we had anyone get lost or even questioned whether they were on the right route or not. Kentuckians are either more respectful or less interested in relays than SoCalians who like to steal and flip around Ragnar course marker signs and watch runners get lost for fun.
- Starting at 4:30pm meant we ran the boring highway section at night, and got the beautiful horse country side roads during the day. The views were incredible – even when halted for a tractor crossing…
- Southern hospitality in full force – from coffee shops open all night urging runners to warm up and take advantage of indoor plumbing, to the restaurant about to shut their doors that took our runner in and accommodated a 2am “pasta and salad” non-menu request. Kentucky, you’re so dang nice.
- Our crazy mix of rookies, vets, strangers, old friends, new friends, spouses, sisters, elites, and mid-packers all meshed perfectly. Serious drama-free zone, and if you’ve ever spent 24 hours in close quarters with a group, let alone sleepless and stinky, you know that’s a miracle in itself.
- Related: the people 100% make or break a relay.
- Somehow “I’ll probably run x:xx pace” was spot on every single damn time. I got almost as big a thrill watching the clock and seeing each runner appear over the horizon “RIGHT ON TIME!!!” each exchange. (Dan will vouch that was my favorite thing to yell/cheer – Type A sorrynotsorry.) Everyone just ran so well and man we had some fucking fast people on our team.
- Speaking of, 3rd in division, 15th overall, 7:17 avg pace. BOOYAH!
(predicted finish time was 25 hours – who finishes a relay faster than planned?!)
- I’ve not been training. I’ve barely been running actually (15-20mi/wk), and have definitely not done a workout or long run in at least a month. Putting down three solid hard effort runs (7:35 average for 5.1mi and 4.3mi, 7:55 hilly 10k last) did wonders for my confidence and excitement about running. No shock there – I leave every relay weekend all jacked up for things to come and go on a total run bender.
indisputable #runlove visible even through bad exposure and blurryness
- … which is why I agreed to train hard through the winter for the Carlsbad Half with Margot and Kristina (both running the full)
- … as long as I survive the “Aquathlon” I randomly agreed to this weekend. Umm ps I don’t really know how to swim and am pretty afraid of big bodies of water.
Better go prep my will and write a few farewell notes. Who wants my gu stash and Brooks collection if I don’t make it out alive?
(ps any last minute swimming tips would be greatly appreciated)
(double ps – Anyone running RnR LA this weekend?? I’ll be working the Nuun booth Friday from 12-6 – come say hi!)