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Executive Summary: i missed the cutoff at mile 48 by a few minutes and was pulled from the course. wow.<br><br><br>
The short and long of it all:<br>
Last year i ran this race and there was some terrible weather. I barely made the cutoffs and had some issues with the race organization, but i chalked it up to the weather and looked forward to returning this year. My husband also wanted to try his had at the bike race.<br><br>
After I signed up for the VT50, i decided to do the Grand Teton 100 miler a few weeks before. One of the hardest 100 milers out there. THEN we bought a house, painted and moved. This past month was exhaustive. If my DH was not signed up for the bike race, i would have bagged the race, but since we were going i decided to run and just enjoy myself.<br><br>
The race started off well and it was foggy and a bit cool and damp. The first several miles were uneventful. I was having some minor piriformis issues, which i have not had since February, and took some advil and it made it bearable (piriformis pain = pain in the ass!!!!).<br><br>
At the 13 (?) mile aid station, we were able to get our drop bags. I arrived there and saw Gingerbread. What a nice surprise!!!!! We looked for my drop bag and it was no where to be found. I had counted on my Ensures and Clif blocks for my nutrition for the next big bulk of the race (to mile 35.5 with the next drop bags). I tried to hold back my temper tantrum and be positive. Ginger had a granola bar thing and i took that and some cookies and tried to shake it off. This is where i nutritionally got very far behind during the race, which i am sure was a HUGE factor in the last stretch.<br><br>
The next stretch was long. 8+ miles to the next aid station. I was doing well and powering up the uphills very well. The 21 mile aid station is decieving, you see it and hear it WAY before you get there. I remembered that from last year. It is such a tease after over 8 miles in the woods. Once there i was shocked to find i was 10 minutes ahead of the cutoff. I picked up the pace and 6+ miles later, i was 40+ minutes ahead of the cutoff at the next aid station.<br><br>
This aid station was memorable for me, because this is where the torrential storms and heavy rains came thru in the previous year. This year, this is also where i started to rapidly past other runners for the rest of the race. Not something i have a lot experience doing in ultras! i passed 13 (one finally repassed me 45 miles in) during the rest of the race. I felt good here and felt like i was doing very well with my time.<br><br>
Mile 35.5 was the next drop bag point and where i saw Ginger again. She helped me load up on clif blocks and ensures. She also walked with me for a while up the trail. Seeing her was, by far, the highlight of the entire race!<br><br>
This is where the race fell apart for me, this year and last. It was supposed to be 5.4 miles to the next aid station. AND just like last year, i ran for 100+ minutes. A lot of this section was downhill switchbacks and i was running at a good clip. When i finally got to the aid station, they informed me i was only 37.5 miles into the race. WTF?<br><br>
I went thru the aid station fast and did not stop for anything but a quick swig of coke. I did not have time to stop and wanted to just spend more time at the next aid station. As i approached the 43 (?) mile aid station, the volunteer yelled down the road to me that i had only one minute to get there or they were going to pull me (they ended up letting three people behind me continue, and they were no where near me at that point). Last year this same aid station told me i would never make the next cutoff and i did! This year, i would not be so lucky. I knew i was pushing it close to the time and really wanted to just make the last cut off. I did not stop to pee or eat or refill my camelbak. I just wanted to go forward fast. I started to run and run fast. After a short while my legs just could not take it and for the first time ever in my ultra career, my legs felt like they were going to stop and fail on me all together in the middle of the woods. So, i walked for a little bit and then ran/walked as fast as i could muster.<br><br>
I turned my timer to clock and knew i had to make it to the cutoff by 6:15pm. I ran by a group of people who cheered me on and told me i looked awesome and i said "as long as they let me continue!" and they said, of course they would. I rounded the corner to the road to the final aid station and knew i was out of time. I knew it was close and knew it could go either way when i got there. I came up the drive to the station and was shocked to find the aid station gone, and i was only a few minutes late. All the food gone, all the drink gone, all the drop bags gone, and most of the volunteers gone. I asked if i was going to be allowed to continue and told them i had a handheld light, but they said no. I then asked how i was going to get back to the finish and the race official said he did not know. WTF???Then i asked if he can radio to the finish to tell my husband that i was pulled at mile 48 and he said no. WTF? So i beg around for a ride until i get one.<br><br>
A woman behind me at the race came up there at the time i was finding a ride and was shocked to know she was pulled. She cried and was in disbelief. I felt so bad for her and hugged her before i left for the finish. Turns out, the aid station was closed down early and the four guys ahead of me (at least 10-15 minutes) were pulled before the cut off time!!!!! This is what angers me. Not the fact that i did not finish, but the way they dealt with it. The lack of food and water for us there was uncalled for. The drop bags already gone sucked as well. My husband said he kept asking the officials at the finish if i made the last cut off and they said they had not heard. My husband also heard the RD walkie talkie way before the cut off time to the last aid station to bring the drop bags in and they tried to argue with him as there were a lot of runners still out there.<br><br>
I feel worst for the people around me who did not finish their first 50 miler. Three of those guys said they will never run another ultra again <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"><br><br>
I also think i will never do this race again. The issues i had with the race last year were not because of the weather, but actually with the race.<br><br>
I also think i should stick to 100 milers <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
 

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So sorry meri! I can only imagine how mad you are after last year.<br><br>
Hey, there is a somewhat more famous race with a very similar name that is held earlier in the year. For you, it might be a better choice. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
if you are talking about the VT100, maybe. As long as it is not the same RD. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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Meri..You are awesome..That is all there is to it!! Nothing more to say. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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I read a report on how the miles were mismarked late in the race. Sorry to hear this. For you, other racers, and the race itself.<br><br>
But how did DH do?<br><br>
I was kind of wondering how your motivation was -- thanks for sharing where you're at right now. By all accounts, you've had a tremendous breakout year. I've done but half the races as you this year and I have felt a letdown in motivation since the 100. You've now done two (and many 50s) and you're still running strong. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><br><br>
Not sure if you need recovery (?) but I wish for your some rest and relaxation. You've deserve it! You have an admirable attitude about it all.
 

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Merigayle - <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"><br><br>
I am so sorry to hear that the race was so poorly organized. It is so unfair to the people who have done all that hard work to do the race, and then the race directors screw it up and the race ends poorly for those who have done the hard work.<br><br>
I'm sure you won't, but I hope you won't dwell on this one too much.<br><br>
Instead, take that anger and energy and channel into a new goal. And you're going to do awesome in your next race.<br><br>
Even better Meri - next year do the Equinox. Sure it's just a wimpy marathon, but it's much better run than that race was! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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merigayle - in my eyes you are still the best<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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hey girl, I'm glad you know how strong you are. I felt a big frustration myself reading your RR. Usually you see the RDs celebrating the accomplishments and trying to help and not trying to bring people down and defeat them before they are even done...whattahell...<br>
You rock anyways...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
my DH finished the race! He had to dig deep and he dug very very deep. I was proud of him <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
I think the moving and lack of sleep really killed my motivation, and then sitting in the car for 7.5 hours to then stay at my MILs house was not exciting either <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
I am not upset about the DNF, just upset about the circustances surrounding the end of the race. If they said "hey, you did not make the cut off, we're sorry, have some water and here's a ride, we'll walkie talkie to the finish to tell your husband" i would have been fine. Does that make sense?<br><br>
The mile markers were wrong last year, why can't they fix them? DH had a computer on his bike, they could have done that or GPS?
 

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It makes a LOT of sense. Just cause you miss the cutoff you are not entitled to food, water, common courtesy?<br><br>
Sounds like a loser of a race.<br>
Kudos to your DH for finishing his.
 

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Sorry, you spent all that energy and then all that crap happened.<br>
You seem tough enough to overcome anything.<br>
I would consider putting that race on the DNE (Do Not Enter) list.<br>
I see you putting your heart and soul in the Trail.<br>
Good to see you moving forward relentlessly.<br>
Well Done.<br>
jjj
 

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Dang, that stinks about the poor setup but that is so amazing that you just ran 48 miles and are talking about how you didn't finish. It's amazing how far you have come...these little 50 milers are your short races now. Hah! You are a distance running queen Meri and even if you didn't finish I still adore you! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
 

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Wow Meri, sorry for the bad experience, that stinks. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"> You're still an ultra goddess though!<br><br>
Two friends of mine did the 50 miler as well and had a blast, but it was their first ultra, so I don't think they had any expectations carried from other ultras. (They came in around 10.5 & 11.5 hours, I believe.)<br><br>
Sounds like course support at the aid stations might have gone downhill as the race progressed. I would recommend voicing your disdain to the RD so they can make improvements for the coming years. Even if you miss the cutoff, you should be supplied with the support you pay for with your entry fee.<br><br><i>I just read on the website how the cutoff times are non-negotiable. So, I'm guessing they won't make changes to that overall. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"></i>
 

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meri,<br>
So sorry that this was not your day due to the fault of others. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"><br>
YOU STILL ROCK in my book!!!<br><br>
~And please extend my *WOO* to your DH with his bike race success....awesome!~
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
i am fine with being pulled a few minutes after the cutoff, the way it was handled was innapropriate and unacceptable. HOWEVER, last year they did let a couple people thru the last check point at 48 miles past the cutoff. But i guess not this year <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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With two miles to go, you'd think they'd give a few minutes leeway. Argh! I'd still send a note to the RD - perhaps in a few weeks when the dust is settled.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
maybe. maybe not. i will see. with the way things were handled, especially when the RD wanted them to bring the drop bags in so early against the volunteers better judgement, i am not sure he gives a crap.<br><br>
after last year's mileage snafu's at the aid stations, i emailed him this year to see if they were fixed and he said yes. Same shit this year. DH's bike computer confirmed it. He said all the aid station miles were way off, but the total miles were pretty close to 50M.
 

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What a f'd up mess! First of all, why have a cutoff 2 miles before the finish? That's just wrong. Maybe at the aid station prior, but 2 miles? Second. . .the administration sounds just totally slipshod--can't seem to get the mileage correct, communication sucks...I mean WTF. Is The North Face secretly putting this on?<br><br>
So sorry you had to deal with this kind of junk...again!
 
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