Meet Your Maker, a 50 mile ultra through the stunning landscape of Whistler, and the dreamchild of 5 Peaks' Kathryn Stanton, came to fruition this last weekend. And with outstanding success I might add. The 5 Peaks team put together one of the most amazing race experiences I've ever been part of. They must know god as well because the weather was absolutely perfect.
Having run the Squamish 50 a few weeks back I regretfully vowed not to run 50 miles again for awhile and so registered with a Salomon Flight Crew Team to do the Meet Your Maker relay. As many of you know, the relay experience is super fun as you jump from leg to leg and see who can catch up or who will be caught. It's tense at times, but you can feel the camaraderie deepening throughout the event; Great for our Flight Crew Teams as we only really catch up once a year.
It's not often I am able to run in the alpine of Whistler mountain or any alpine for that matter so I requested an alpine leg. Munny, our illustrious leader, gave me legs four and five. Leg four is like no other trail run in the world. I received the relay beacon, sprinted 75 meters, and sat down inside Whistler's Peak to Peak gondola for 12 minutes. Our team was in 7th place and I knew I had some work to do and so didn't really enjoy the anxiety filled ride from Blackcomb to Whistler. Upon touch down at the south end, I flashed out of the tiny red cabin to run straight down hill for almost eight kilometers to Creekside. The run was uneventful other than a short pee break half way down Franz's until and a super dancy section of single track just prior to the end. It wasn't until I ran through the aid station and began leg five that I realized how messed up my legs were going to be after this was over. With a filled water bottle, I turned back up the hill and headed into the trees again toward the Cheakamus River. This leg was mostly old skid road until reaching the river itself. At this point you enter single track heaven and burn it down and down and down until finally reaching the exchange at Function Junction. Sore legs and all, I nailed the fastest time of the day on that section and the second fastest downhill time on my previous leg.
The relay beacon into Munny's sweaty, little hands and I was done. I put my hands on my knees, took a couple of breaths and looked up to see Munny had completely vanished down the road. My performance brought us into 5th place and Munny's performances, one of which was a bit mysterious, got us another two places for a third overall finish and 1st team of males.
It was an amazing event and as has been quoted several times in the last week, I can't wait to Meet My Maker next year. With teary and proud eyes, Kathryn and her team were able to announce that this event is a certainty for next year on September 1st.
Thanks to Salomon for a terrific weekend. Great people. Great food. And a whole lot of laughs.
Congratulations to our Flight Crew Captain, Phil Villeneuve, for a well earned second place in the 50 miler. Four days later and my legs are finally coming around. I can't imagine yours have been any better.