First up is Bob, who I first met last March at the Deuce. Since then we've gotten to bike together a few times and hang out before and after the last couple adventure races (and I guess during, too, at times).
Then, there's Casey, who I finally got to meet in person at September's Berryman after months of commenting on his blog posts...and titles (or Luke's titles, depending on who you believe)...and spelling...
And, finally (alphabetically, anyway), there's Luke. I first met him last February at the Castlewood Cup 15K, and then he was my tour guide to the wonderful world of maps at the Deuce. He's also had the dubious pleasure of biking with me, most notably taking one for the team by being my partner in the Tall Oak Challenge.
I still am kind of pinching myself that I get to race with this team, some of the nicest, funniest, hairiest people I know (and that goes for the whole Virtus team, not just the ones I'm racing with this weekend). I have some awesome local friends who have their own adventure racing team, so it's really nice to have a team where I belong (and even have my own Tenacious D-inspired nickname!) rather than having to sit around and hope somebody needs a teammate.
LBL will be my first 24-hour adventure race. The website tells us our race "will consist of 40-60 miles of mountain biking on paved and gravel roads, jeep roads and single track trails; running, trekking and bushwhacking 15-30 miles and paddling 15-25 miles". The course is unmarked and teams navigate with a map and compass to checkpoints located along the way. Teams with the most checkpoints in the least amount of time win.
The guys aren't much better, though. Luke sends us regular countdowns while looking into paddle options and trying to corral the other three of us into making decisions, Bob is reading race reports from previous LBLs and staring at maps trying to guess how we'll start, and Casey is researching the canoes it looks like we may use (rereading the blurb under his picture might give you a hint why). A quick look at my email shows at least 28 LBL-related emails in the past week, and that doesn't count my responses or anything I may have deleted.
As is typical for me as a race looms near, I'm transitioning from simple excitement to bipolar mood swings between hyperactive puppy and hyperventilation. What am I nervous about?
- The mountain biking, in particular at night, though at least I've been on the singletrack at LBL and felt comfortable.
- 24 hours of racing. Wow, that's a long time.
- Slowing the guys down.
- 24 straight hours of racing
- Hoping that having a girl along doesn't cramp their style
|Judging from the emails and comments like this, though, I think we'll do just fine.|
- Oh, and...um...there's some pretty serious competition.
Unfortunately, once again there's no online coverage for you all to be able to check in and see how we're doing, but I'll update the SuperKate facebook page/twitter if I can or you can follow @teamvirtus on twitter or "like" Team Virtus on facebook.
Two more days.
I can't wait.