Race report — Badwater Badass: NYARA’s Chris Rice

Team NYARA is super proud of Chris Rice for his amazing performance at this year’s Badwater. He finished 25th overall and which is totally badass! He gives the full report here. Enjoy!

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I haven’t done one of these in a while, but figured that it was the Badwater, so I should probably get some details down.

To begin, this was the first year on the “new” course, which basically means that, instead of running straight out of Badwater to Mt Whitney, you start towards the end and do some out and back mountain running to make up 90 miles, then run the final 45 from the original course. While this avoids the most extreme heat of the course, it adds loads of elevation and 15 miles of unfinished dirt road running.

My training for the race was pretty much standard, loads of miles with little recovery time. In the last few weeks, I spent some time doing heat training by adding layers to hill workouts and doing some sauna workouts (very light).

I flew into Las Vegas late Sat night with my crew (more on them later), picked up our van, and headed to Pahrump, which was about an hour from the airport, but the last town before going into Death Valley. Got up Sunday AM and hit the Walmart for supplies and then drove another 3 hours through Death Valley to the registration at Lone Pine. Went through all of the mandatory meetings and then back to the hotel for sleep, my start time was 8:00 am Monday.

At 7:30, we were at the starting line, ready to run….had to get weighed in and take pics, then we were off. Right away, I was shocked at how fast people went out. I have seen this before in other runs, but I figured it would be different here…..we had 23 miles uphill directly in front of us. I was in the back of the pack as we made it to the top of the mountain, and both of my pads on my feet were hurting, so I took a couple of minutes to change to new socks and apply some new foot cream. The trip down was much better, started making up ground as people who had sprinted up began to slow down.

At mile 45, you are back in town, having knocked out the biggest mountain and now you can have a pacer. My crew started running with me here, and would be with me for the rest of the race. Layne and Stark took turns until we made it to Cerro Gordo, which is the next mountain and now at mile 59. Here Shaddow put on a pack with some gear and food in it, and also carried 4 water bottles. The sun was going down and we would not be back at the support vehicle for at least 4 hours. The climb was much more aggressive on a dirt/rock road leading up to the ghost town. People were really having a tough time now, the elevation was getting to them and we saw some napping, swaying, and vomiting at different times up the mountain. The top of the mountain was cool, but we didn’t stay long…..we started running back down. Quads are now very sore and feet are getting banged up on all of the rocks and uneven terrain coming down.

Mile 75 and back at the car. Finally sat down and ate a foot long Italian hero from subway. This was possibly the best sandwich I ever had. Drank a bunch of sodas, a red bull, and took a couple caffeine pills….and was running again. All of the caffeine had me going pretty fast and passing more people. My feet started feeling odd, so I stopped at 85 to check them out. Two large blisters on both heels, and 50 miles to go….not really the best situation….popped them with a pin Stark found and started running again. We got to the Darwin turnaround at 91 and my feet were really giving me trouble, I had not prepared well for this situation and we were not equipped to handle it. Luckily, one of the other support crews helped out with good moleskin, which I hoped would get me back to the medics on my feet.

The sun was coming up now and it was getting hot, much hotter than the day before. This part of the race was the hardest, without a doubt. My feet were degrading quickly, forcing me to run in the sand next to the road. I was running so slowly that my support guys could actually walk and keep up with me…the road stretches out in front of you very far in the desert, and you don’t feel like you are making much progress. My stomach had stopped accepting most sugar, so I was down to chicken soup, water, and cokes. The crew really got me through this section, keeping me laughing and forcing as much drink into me as I could handle.

Mile 122 and back in Lone Pine – and the medics. 30 min with two people working on my feet. They knew that all they had to do was get me 13 miles up Mount Whitney, so they hooked me up. Got me drained, cleaned, taped and padded up, even gave me a pair of brand new socks. I was out the door and walking up the mountain, and I felt really good now, passed a couple of people, even did a bit of running to stay ahead of an Italian guy who seemed to find a reserve of energy.

34 hours and a few minutes after I started the race, I finally crossed the finish line. Check one more item off the bucket list…..

I had a great time, great scenery and really interesting people out on the course. Everyone is extremely supportive of each other out there, less of a race than an endeavor. I didn’t’ “find myself” in the desert or anything, but it was a cool experience. In retrospect, I would not have prepared any differently. I would have brought more foot care equipment, but other than that I think it would be the same.

The most critical component of this race is your crew, without a doubt. This is more important than your training, your gear, and your food. I was lucky to have come out here with some good friends, and they really lifted me through the isolated moments of the race.

My most sincere thanks to my crew – Mike Shaddow, Matt Stark, and Jeff Layne.

I also want to say thanks to my wife and best friend Patty as well as my three sons – Peyton, Teague, and Asher – for supporting me through this experience.

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Q&A with a first time racer — 24hour

Cradle Canoe

As promised here’s a short Q&A with Mikal Davis who raced as part of Team NYARA at GOALS ARA’s Cradle of Liberty.

Q: What was the biggest difference between 24h racing and shorter races?

No sleep was the biggest difference for me. I wasn’t fully prepared for my eyes refusing to stay open. Planning for nutrition/food was also quite different. I could have eaten more earlier in the race to avoid the 3am wall-hitting.

Q: What was the high point of the race?
The first 18 hrs (maybe excluding the canoe section, which was a bit of a disaster for us–but we recovered well!) Olof was nailing the navigation, Whitney and I were feeling really strong and the team was moving at a great pace. All of that equated to high spirits and fun racing.
Q: What was the low point of the race?
The low was hitting the wall around 3am and not being able to contribute to the team as much as I would have liked. It was a great learning experience, but it didn’t feel good at the time.
Q: Was there any piece of gear that was essential for 24h racing, Especially one that is not that important in shorter races?
Apart from extra bright flashlights, I would say using platform pedals helped us out a lot. We saved on weight by not having to lug around biking shoes and I did not feel like our biking suffered as a result. I will definitely use platforms in my next 24+hr race.
Q: What did you learn from this race?
I learned what to expect at 3am and have a good idea on how to combat the drowsiness next time–better nutrition and more caffeine!
Q: Second place overall is pretty dang good your third adventure race ever. Is there anything you can see that the fast teams are doing differently vs. mid pack teams?  Also, do you have any recommendations for racers who are looking to be lead pack?
Fast transitions are an easy way to cut time. This requires lots of organization and forethought, but can cut significant time over a 24+hr race. Overall, NYARA has been great to race for in the last 2 ARs and has lots of potential in the team. I am excited to keep racing and to go to nationals for the first time this October!
Thanks again to GOALS ARA for a great race!

Cradle of Liberty – Tired Bodies, Tricky Trails and an Awesome Course!

Team NYARA (Olof Hedberg, Whitney Hedberg and newbie Mikal Davis) raced GOALS ARA’s Cradle of Liberty 26h race on June 30th and came in 2nd place overall! Team Captain, Olof Hedberg shares his race report below. Next up, a Q&A with Mikal Davis about his first race over 10h and what its really like racing with the crazy Hedbergs 🙂

Cradle of Liberty

Team NYARA didn’t have high expectations lining up at the start line of the 2014 Cradle of Liberty. Whitney and I had just finished Untamed New England less than a week before so our bodies were still trying to recover from ~550km in the Maine highlands. The biggest reason we did the race was to be able to race with Whitney’s brother Mikal and also to get to see Brent and Abby’s course.

After a short prologue we started with paddling. Objectively the paddling section was awesome, with portages, some canoe dragging and CP placements that forced the navigator to pay attention. Performance-wise it was a disaster. Never having paddled the three of us together, we went more zig-zag than straight. Finally we put Mikal in the middle, Whitney in front and me in the back — which is closer to how we normally paddle. The fact that we only lost 30 min to the leaders was a small miracle — and had more to do with spot on navigation than any sort of paddling skills. Once we finally got to the TA we were in 11th place (after being 2nd team on the water then dropping to the bottom third of the field in the middle of the paddle section).
We left the water a little bit frustrated but happy to be on our bikes. Time to do some catch up! Going into an amazing single track network we got extra maps and directions from Bruce Kuo (seriously – the man basically showed up at every TA for the race – volunteer MVP). The riding was awesome and a great break from the normal “fire road slog” that usually is the staple of AR. We continued to push pretty hard on the flat rail trails that followed, but on such easy riding it is hard to gain or lose any significant amount of time. We dropped our bikes at the next TA and to our surprise we heard that we were in second place – still 30 min behind the leaders (and eventual race winners) – AAS/TOG. Wow – from 11th to 2nd place in one section – that was a good one.
The next trek started with a smaller mistake for us. After jogging some asphalt roads we are supposed to head onto a single track trail up a 600 vertical feet ridge. We took the trail, which turned into someone’s drive way and then dead-ended into a house. We got help from the owner of the property, who walked us back down to the road and pointed us in the right direction – which cost us some time but made us a friend. The GOALS+1 with Jason and Mark caught up with us at this point and we headed towards CP7 together. The rest of the trek went relatively smoothly, with great CP locations and an interesting amount of bushwacking vs trails spread over a beautiful landscape. We finished the trek having lost another 10 min to AAS/TOG and down to third place overall (passed by GOALS+1). Not a big deal. Next up was a really hilly bike ride. Whitney’s persistent training has turned hilly bike rides into somewhat of a specialty for our team and no amount of tiredness from Untamed could change that. Rolling into the next TA with our Oasis box waiting we were back in second place and only 30 min behind the leaders. Whitney and I were shocked. The entire day our bodies felt like molasses and we were fighting aches and soreness with every step. Somehow, after 12h of racing we found ourselves in second place and still only 30 min behind AAS/TOG — which we basically lost on the paddle section.
We decided that with things going this well, there is no reason to risk it and push hard into the night trek. We expected a total “bonk” could hit us during the night considering UNE, so we sat down and took our time at the TA — eating a delicious meal of TA box pizza, chips, coke and our new favorite — chocolate milk. With such an awesome course, the extra 10 min to eat and talk about what a great day we had (so far) was really energizing.
Then we headed into the night trek. We managed to take the first CP in daylight but then darkness quickly fell. We hit the next couple of CPs spot on navigation-wise, but seemed to miss some easy, unmapped trails, making the section slow and tiresome. We estimated time and distances and made a bet. We didn’t think the course was clearable. We strategically cut out three CPs and headed directly to the TA so we could get back on our bikes and leave behind some of the very intense night bushwacking. We reached the TA together with AAS/TOG but with the knowledge that we skipped three CPs and were probably behind them in terms of score. Getting the additional maps we saw that we were right about the course not being clearable. The remaining distances were just too big for us considering our tiredness at the time. After some quick route planning we headed towards the first CP in the section. Our hope for this section was to take some CPs to quickly compensate for the skipped CPs on the trek. To our disappointment, we couldn’t find the first CP. After spending 30 min walking several “boundary lines” we gave up and biked to the next one. The next couple of CPs were relatively easy but tiredness was starting to set in for both Mikal and Whitney. The previous week’s hard racing was catching up to Whitney and in a moment of not paying full attention, she fell into a rut and flew off her bike hitting the ground hard. Luckily, the crash only resulted in bruises and scraped up knees and we were able to keep going. In the meantime, Mikal — dealing with his first night racing experience ever — was getting more and more tired so I took over the responsibility of the punch card. We typically divide up the responsibilities across the team and I normally focus on the navigation and team captain roles so I don’t have a good routine for the punch card. It didn’t take longer than five minutes and the most bushy section of the race before I lost it! I walked back and forth retracing my steps trying to find it. Finally, I gave up and started punching the map. Walking back to the road from the CP I met Rev3 and told them about the punch card before heading back to the bikes. I was pretty frustrated with myself for losing it but with two faded teammates on my hands, I felt like I should just keep pushing forward. Two CPs later we crossed paths with Rev3 again and to our surprise they had found the punch card – AMAZING! A huge thanks to the race gods and Rev3 for saving our race.
Coming into the next TA (after some awesome climbs) we got to do some fantastic bouldering. This was a new  and innovative idea from course designers, Brent and Abby. I really think it worked well and I appreciated it a lot. In my own courses (Jersey Inferno) I always try to change things up and incorporate new elements so I really appreciated this kind of surprise in the race. Mikal, typically the strongest climber on our team, was pretty dizzy at this point and he could hardly get out on the rocks. Luckily the race directors had relaxed the rules a bit in this section and allowed only one person to punch if the others were uncomfortable with the heights.
After the bouldering we headed out onto the final trek. My brain turned into mush at this point and the race went downhill. We spent over 2h on a trek that seemed to be pretty straight forward and only managed to get 1 CP! Mind you, the CP we took was literally 3 min from the TA. So after getting the first one, we basically jogged to the next CP – got into the general area – spent 30 min looking for it, gave up and jogged to the next one – rinse and repeat a few more times. Pretty low on morale, we finally headed back to the TA – sure that we had dropped several places but giving ourselves ample time to head back to the finish line – we knew we had a lot of downhill on roads and one short, but not insignificant uphill between the last TA and the finish line. The bike back to the finish line went well and we finished after 25 hours and 36 minutes of racing. We had no idea of how many places we had lost in the end. All we could do was enjoy the breakfast buffet and snooze a little until the results were announced.
We were excited to hear at the awards ceremony that we managed to keep second place! While sometimes second place feels like the first loser, this time it felt like we won. With the big mistakes in the last section it felt like 4-5 more CPs would easily have been achievable. And with UNE just the week before, second place was a huge success for us. Triple high five! A great ending to a couple of hard weeks of adventure racing!
A huge thanks to GOALS ARA and especially Bent and Abby who had designed a fantastic course, all the volunteers and Breathe magazine for reporting on the race.
Olof – Team Captain NYARA

Untamed New England

Team NYARA had a great showing at Untamed New England this year — two teams finished 11th and 16th overall. A little known fact is that Team #31 — Carpe Vitam — snuck in an extra two Team NYARA members. Austin Planz and NYARA President Denise Mast both raced their first expedition race with Carpe Vitam on this year’s brutal course. We are really proud of them and thought it would be interesting to hear their thoughts as first-time expedition racers. Check out this Q&A with them below. Meet Austin and Denise. They are known to throw back a cold one while carrying tons of gear through the Maine wilderness.

 

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Q: Considering neither of you had ever raced over 30h before – how did you prepare for this race?
Denise: Actually, I did more running than I probably needed. Our team had two 24-hour training sessions that were valuable in understanding the team dynamics as well as our strengths and weaknesses. We’re still looking for my strengths.

Austin: Physically, I did not have time to train for the race. (Don’t tell my teammates). The biggest prep was gathering gear and food and separating them into gear bins.

Q: What was the biggest difference between racing 24h races and expedition races?

Denise: Obviously the time! Establishing a steady, even pace that works for all team members was big for us considering we got so far behind at the very beginning of the race. We were the last team to reach the rappel section but from there on out, we were more focused and maintained an even pace that helped us pick off a lot of teams.

Austin: The hardest thing was getting use to the distances; needing to settle into a particular discipline for the long hall.  Paddling all night, trekking dawn till dusk, don’t find that in a 30 hour race.

Q: Was anything easier than you expected?

Denise: I think I expected to be more fatigued during the race than I was. But caffeine worked its wonders as well as my teammates’ constant joke cracking. Laughter is the best stimulant out there.

Autstin: I’ve been more tired and beat up after a 6hr race.  Our slow and steady pace and cheery disposition made the race easy on us.

Q: Was anything harder than you expected?

Denise: Going through withdrawal after getting home! I miss the guys, I miss the anticipation about racing and am ready to do it all over again if my teammates would have me.
Austin: It was way harder getting back to reality than I could have ever imagined.

Q: If you could re-do this race – what would you focus on in terms of preparation?

Denise: I would do a lot more back strengthening and carry a heavy pack around often. The shooting pains down my neck to my lower back because of the weight of the pack were not fun.

Austin: I would have set up a better bike tow system.

Q: You guys started silly slow (if I’m not mistaken you were in last place a couple of hours into the race), but then steadily moved up in the field to 23rd. What was the key to your success there and how did you manage to hold it together when so many other teams around you dropped off?

Denise: Our navigation team did a great job after the first few hours of some big screw ups. After that, we seemed to pass teams with better navigation choices that left other teams dumbfounded.

Austin: After our less than spectacular start, we made a team decision to look at the map, not get lost, and enjoy ourselves.  It got amusing seeing teams perplexed as they continuously passing us, usually looking like we were goofing off, and having no idea how they keep getting behind us.  Also, we kept pace steady, everyone else just got slower.

Q: Any piece of gear that you found critical for a race this long?

Denise: My North Face RDT rain jacket was amazing. It repelled water but also acted as a warm outer shell for cold nights.

Austin: Most critical gear is Aquaphor!! and maybe dry bags for when you capsize in pack rafts!

Q: Any piece of gear that you didn’t have but wished you had out on the course?

Denise: I needed a better dry bag for my pack. The one I brought wasn’t large enough so all of my stuff got wet during the paddling sections.

Austin: I wish I had a Sherpa or a masseuse.

Q: Any other last tips or tricks for racers who are looking to take the step from 24h racing to expedition racing?

Denise: Teammate selection is key. I loved my teammates even though I’m sure there were times when they thought I hated them. I experienced some really low points during the race and damn, if all three didn’t pull me back up. In particular, I have to credit my teammate Kirk for getting me to stop panicking when the packraft Austin and I were in capsized on the rapids of the Dead River. Kirk saw that I was panicking and breathing in water with every breath. He looked me in the eyes and basically yelled at me to focus, stop panicking and to swim to shore. I needed that. He shrugged it off like it was nothing but I cannot thank him enough for it. I get teary-eyed just thinking about it.
Austin: If you are looking to make the leap into expeditions, make sure you like your teammates!!  They made my race a ton of fun.  Plan ahead as well, buying gear over a long period of time is easier to hide from the spouse.
A few other fun photos from Denise’s and Austin’s race:
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Thanks Austin and Denise! Great job on Untamed New England!!

Untamed New England 2014 – Race Report

UNE starting picture

Untamed New England was a huge success for NYARA with their first team finishing as the third US team and 11th place overall, while the second team, NYARA-Krell placed 16th overall.

Official results are here: http://www.untamedne.com/2014Result.aspx

Below is a short summary by Olof Hedberg – Team Captain for NYARA as well an interview with the team from MadAthlete – NYARA sponsor and general supporter of Adventure Racing. NYARA-Krell will publish their race report next week, so you have a lot more to look forward to. Happy 4th of July everyone!!!!

Like all expedition adventure races, the race starts weeks before you actually reach the start line. For us, the biggest problem this time was that our original team member Chris Rice, got injured and had to withdraw a week before the race. Luckily we have a deep squad and Eric Caravella was able to step in with short notice.

As usual, it was actually a relief once the race started and we were on our way. We decided to race hard to the rappel section. With a rope section so early in the race, we knew it would be a bottle neck–so we pushed hard from the start. Unfortunately there was a lot of paddling – by far our weakest discipline – so even while we pushed the pace, we still had a 1h 30 min wait at the top. After that we went slow and steady during the first 24h trying to take it easy and not burn up. After the O-Relay (about 24h into the race for us) we increased our speed and started passing teams over the next day. Then the last day we raced and pushed ourselves really hard just focusing on the next CP. On the last leg, we met up with the other NYARA team and biked to the finish line together in an 8 person NYARA group – absolutely wonderful! – Olof


 

After the race – MadAthlete had some questions for the team:

Q: So tell us a little about the race and how it played out.
Olof: Overall the race went fantastically. We had some small problems during the first 24h, with a navigation mistake from my side, and some slow going after that. After the orienteering relay we hit our stride, and from that point home it was all smooth sailing. We only slept 2h and 10 minutes during the entire race, but that meant that we managed to make all the cut offs (one was luckily extended). I’m just so proud of my team and especially Eric and Whitney who did their first and second expedition race respectively.
Q: What was the highlight of the race for you?
Whitney: Getting CP 43. We knew the timing would be tight and maybe even impossible, but we worked really hard and strategically as a team to get to CP 43 with enough time to make the cut off. When we found the CP and knew we had enough time to get to the rafting start, we were on top of the world. It felt so good to know that through teamwork and sheer determination we would be completing the full course. It felt like we won 🙂
Eric: That was my best AR moment to date. We developed a strong strategy and as a team we covered the 40K, grabbed the point, and made the cutoff, securing our full-course finish and improving our ranking to 11th place. It was flawlessly executed and a monumental achievement for us as a team, and I’ll never forget it.
Q: What was the lowlight of the race for you?
Whitney: Probably finishing the long paddle leg on the first day. I was wet, freezing and really tired. Olof seemed to be leading us on an exploration of all the inlets on Moosehead Lake except the one with TA1 🙂 I was so happy to get out of the boat and into dry clothes. Also the folks at Good To Go had delicious warm food waiting for us. Talk about a turn around!
Q: Was there an MVP on your team?
Olof: I don’t believe in MVPs in Adventure Racing. In other team sports the concept is significant and valid as one person can turn a whole game around. In Adventure Racing you can never go faster than the slowest person, which means that the most heroic accomplishments you often see are made by the person who is the weakest at any given point. Off the top of my head I can’t think of any team sport where your performance is so tied to each individual on the team.
Q: What was the funniest moment on the race?
Eric: My funniest moment was during the whitewater rafting leg. Whitney evidently was frustrated by too few wildlife sightings during the race, and too few hours of sleep. She began pointing out bears and moose along the river shores, where there were zero actual animals. In Whitney’s mind, she was convinced the river edge was a veritable zoo. But in reality, she just needed a nap.
Whitney: For me it was Bruce and his ability to be asleep before even sitting down. He put up a strong effort to stay awake, but when sleep took hold he was out. Watching him fight the sleep definitely make me giggle a few times during the race.
Olof: I get a trail mail from Switzerland saying “There is a funny picture of you sleeping on the main website.” It was so absurd that due to the fantastic internet updates during this race, I’m in the middle of the Maine forest not knowing anything about the rest of the world, and my sister-in-law in Switzerland knows more about my sleeping habits than I do. Just created a really funny feeling.
Q: What new gear did you use or try in the race? How did it perform?
Eric: Trekking poles!! Expedition pace is slower than 24hr AR pace, of course, but even if you’re not running, the relentless hours on your feet can still take their toll. Walking with trekking poles did wonders for alleviating some of the stress on my feet, I would have been so much worse off without them. Additionally, if the race course is mountainous, the poles will allow you to use upper body strength to get you up those hills. I’m convinced this is a major reason my legs felt so good for the whole race, because lord knows it wasn’t because my pack was light. Who carries a packraft over so many mountains??
Whitney: I used the Sea to Summit Traveller Tr I sleeping bag to meet the individual gear requirement. I assumed that I would only be carrying it, not actually using it so I was glad it was super light and compact. But then I did end up using it for the 2 hours we slept on the course and I loved it. It is designed to be a quilt or a bag — the foot has a drawstring closer, which gave me flexibility and allowed me to strategically leave my feet outside the bag to air out 🙂 I was perfectly warm and comfortable while sleeping in it — way better than a regular bivy (which isn’t much smaller/lighter). It will be a new staple in my pack.
Olof: Hand paddles. We had practiced packrafting with a normal kayak paddle in the back and hand paddles in the front. It worked amazingly for the pack raft section. The slow down during the paddling was minimal, and they were so much easier to carry during the Abenaki trek.
Q: What was the most important piece of gear you used during the race?
Eric: Bean Burritos and Bacon
Whitney: My Ghost Whisperer puffy. While I don’t use it much, it is like an insurance policy. I know that if I start to freeze, I can throw on my puffy and be fine within seconds. I ALWAYS bring it.
Olof: I loved our Alpacka GNU. It’s fast, light and super maneuverable. Every time I got in it I was so happy to be flying over the water and resting my feet.
Q: What do you wish you had during the race that you didn’t carry?
Eric: A chain saw
Whitney: More salty food. And plain old water. I was really not happy with my food/sports drink for this race and will be changing things up a lot next time.
Q: What is something new you learned during the race that you will apply to future races?
Whitney: To do the thinking before hand so that I can just go when I am on the course. I think working modularly helps here — in terms of food, clothes, gear, water. I found that using water bottles instead of a bladder worked so much better and could easily transition between disciplines. With clothes, using arm warmers and calf sleeves meant I could quickly regulate my temperature without having to stop — they also provided good protection when bushwhacking. For food I thought in terms of 10-hour bags so that I could quickly grab what I needed for the next section without having to think about it. Breaking everything down into small, simple pieces that can be multifunctional is key.
Q: If I had to do it again I would…..
Whitney: Sing more songs — its a tradition to sing ridiculous songs while racing and for some reason this race was lacking in the singing department.
Eric: If I had to do it again, I would wear long sleeves in the Abenaki bushwhack.
Olof: Take my jacket off in the Abenaki section so I didn’t destroy my brand new rain jacket.
Q: Any parting words?
Olof: It was just an amazing experience and the team really got together and put up a great race. It was great to see that we could pull off such a great finish even with an inexperienced team and the potential for future races is just so much higher. We learn new things in every race and continue to become a stronger, more cohesive team. I have high hopes for Team NYARA in upcoming races.