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Athens to Atlanta 2007

549 Views 8 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  merigayle
Music player, loaded ......Check<br>
dry post race shirt..........Check<br>
7 water bottles..............Check<br>
oh, yeah....SKATES!!! i better get them too.<br><br>
down and dirty 87 miles<br>
6:04:37 14.3 MPH pace<br>
a PR for this distance<br><br>
I skate over to the Bus pickup carrying what now feels like a 25 pound sack across my shoulders. meet up with everyone else on the bus and the wheels on the bus go round and round..for 70 minutues to the start line, we make it with plenty of time though, an hour before the gun.<br><br>
a Bathroom run sine coffee and water bottle #1 are done. pin numbers and talk to friends, Team Photo and the Gun.<br><br>
My expectation really was to finish this race, preferably under 7 hours if i could. I tried out several pace lines. some seemed a good fit until the hills started. i look at skaters feet initially in the race to tell me how able they are. if the feet wobble yo don't want to be behind them. these early hills are only speeds around 20 MPH if they can't handle these the 40 MPH hills are way beyond their ability.<br><br>
I got into a pace line with 3 of my team mates. GREAT!!!! turns out we have about 5 "wobblers" in this pace line of 15. all four of us set ourselves up together so we spent as much time in the line together as possible. however at mile 21 we were half in front and half in back. and chaos ensued. the first of the 40MPH hills a wobbler wobbled and the line scatterred across the lane. Joel (a team mate) and i were in the back of the line with Joel weaved thru the chaos ans i sqautted deep and went under the flailing arms and weaved thru the feet. Joel and i break thru to see our two other team mates. we hooked up made our own mini-train and left the wobblers. some folks pulled away from the wobblers and joined us.<br><br>
mile 30. I gotta go PEE!!!!! so i stopped along the road at a suitable spot and go and one of the OK skaters is coming along so i get myself situated hit the road and hop in behind him. i catch up and draft him and then it;s my turn to lead. some downhills coming up and he asks me how i am on downhills. "i'm good, i like them" i say, he starts to question my skills because he saw me pulling out of the line of wobblers and figured i was nervous on hills. he strts to give me, <i>moi,</i> pointers on hills. meanwhile on the descent he hold my waist with two hands???? amatuer. next uphill he's buttered and toasted as he pissed me off i decide to leave him out for the ravens. i catch my teamates again now and we're off.<br><br>
we lost a team mate at the 38 miles finish, his race complete and we picked up a skater, Chris, from Minnesota. he's a very suitable replacement fro Brian, who left at 38. So Mims. Joel , Chriss and I are skating thru for quite some time and we get to check point 4. I have my first set of replacement bottles here. Mmmmmmmm liquid lunch, which is good i'm hungry. Joel comments we are going too fast for him. turns out we were averaging a 15.3 pace and we're about 5 miles into this. and low and behold JUNIOR is here. i razz junior alot, like a little brother. this is his year to beat me. so i see him sitting and eating and i razz him about not letting the 40 y/o (me) beta him (30 y/o) so junior hooks in with Chris, Mims, Joel and I. Party of 5. yeah until we get blown by the first of the 52 mile skaters. this guy was hauling and Junior could not resist and took off after him. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Rolling Eyes"> well after two miles we catch junior all spent he hooks back with us tail between his legs knowing i'll lecture him later. in the mean time we picked up one of Chris's teamamtes, introduction are made ( i never got his name though) the teammates talk amongst themselves and we're moving still about 15.3 MPH. short but STEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP hill here, Joel redlines and has to stop. Mims and i stay back with him junior and the Minnesota team go and said they'd waitfor us on the downhill. yeah, they're gone. we stopped a few times for Joel and then he jusst tells us to go, not to ruin our race, we're not far from the nect checkpoint which Mims and i both want some water from. so we go down the biggest downhill on the course Silver Hill Rd. speeds up to high 40's are possible here when not in a pace line. Mim's and i go down, skate the rest of the way to the check point, water, see another team mate having bad equipment issues but help is on the way for him.and Junior is here, pouring water on his head and commenting on how the uphills are hurting now. Mims and i are ready to take off and Junior wants to join. Mims and dawdle, coast on the road for 5 minutes and no Junior. WTF, well off we go. the strong Junior should be able to catch us old men in this short distance. as we pull out Joels rolls in. GOOD we at least know he's safe now<br>
Well a few more miles and still no Junior, Mims pours on the pwer and off we go, one more check point, with another set of replacement bottles for me. on this leg we pick up quite the cute little thing from Philly. from the distance i commented to Mims about her skate form being great. we caught up to her, compimented her skate form and asked if she'd like to join in. of course she did. so Mims, Christina and I get thru the last check point and start off for the finish line. 72 miles done <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="hello1">. 15 left. mMims is a powerful skater, he had great ground eating strides, but no sprint. I have a good grorun eating stride and really great sprint. Mim's knows this too, he comments often that he never wants a final sprint against me. he had that in mind now. he pushed the pace hard wearing out my legs. we hit a rough two mile section of road but after that we have maybe 4.5 miles left. of smoothness. we get onto the nice asphalt and he pushes harder opening a small gap i can't close. the next to last turn has some traffic issues and i get to close the gap since he basically opened a path for me to skate thru without slowing. i try to start to power up and Mims looks over his shoulder and catches my move with a 50 foot lead already and stilll a half mile out i won't catch him without some outside help. two main trafic obstacles reamain that might help me. he slowed down a bit for both of these and i managed to clase the gap again to about 50 feet but we are only 400 yards form the end. i won't catch him. i cross the line at 6:04:37 I PR'rd by 12 minutes<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="hello1"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="hello1">.<br><br><br>
junior came in ahead of my old PR but behind me.......AGAIN!!!!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"> the funny thing is everyone on our Team first question was. "did you beat junior?" "yes" ahh man he'll never hear the end of this one. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Razz">"<br><br>
always next year Junior
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Good job!!! Sounds like a crazy race. Your goal was to break 7 hours? you kicked that goals ass! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="wav">
I <heart> chuck! Every time I ride my bike on the local route...I think of him<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
I double heart chuck b/c we knew each other before we realized we knew each other!<br><br>
Last time I strapped on skates was 10 years ago. I have a pair in the closet...maybe after the IM I'll let chuck take me on a ride...err...skate!
Congratulations Chuck - 87 miles is pretty darn long no matter what the type of human-powered transport is, and it sounds even more fun doing it on skates
That was a fun report, Chuck! I've never read a skate report. Sounds like a blast! You did great!
I wanted to put on padding just reading this thread! 40 mph on skates??????? Wow. You're brave.<br><br>
87 miles is impressive however you use your body to get there. Great skate, Chuck!
Wow! I just saw this. Great report!<br><br>
I have to echo what the others said. 87 miles on de feet is quite an acomplishment.<br><br>
Dude it sounds like Roller Derby out there! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
I love that fact too, i tell people about my imaginary friends and then it turns out i really did know one. everyone gets a laugh about that.<br><br>
i thought of Tithers while i was out there and think i knew which turn off to get to her house too.<br><br>
thanks guys for the comments, <i>i thought no one wuvved me</i> <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="" style="border:0px solid;" title="Crying or Very sad"><br><br>
racing is a lot like NASCAR racing, yup there are bumps, some crashes and sometimes the frames get broken. and downhill at 40+ is exhillerating, espescially if you can weave thru the chaos and come out of the smoke unharmed. a definate feeling of danger/adrenaline and relief.<br><br>
after 87 miles a feeling of accomplishment too<br><br>
this was my 7th year for this race so either i like pain or i'm a slow learner.
yeah but where's your HANS device???
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