Day 1: Get In The Van – RTB 2013

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Day 1: Get In The Van – RTB 2013

This weekend I ran in the New Hampshire Reach the Beach Relay; a 200-mile relay race from Cannon Mountain to Hampton Beach, across the state of NH. I was one of 12 runners on my team, and we completed the 30-hour race by handing off a reflective snap-it bracelet to transition between runners. Each team has two vans, housing 6 runners (and in our case a non-running driver) for the two days it takes to complete the race. We ate, slept, and got entirely too ridiculous in our vans. Every year this race brings people from all over New England, and even from different countries, who dress up, decorate their vans, and race to the beach. Our theme was cops and robbers. Our team name: Get In The Van!

Cops vs Robbers

Get in the Van

decorating the vans

We spent Thursday night up at Cannoon Mountain, near the starting line, and got an early start Friday with decorating the vans.

the robbers are throwing their cash around

decorating the vans

decorating the vans

decorating the vans

Each van listed the runners on the side with check boxes for us to mark off at the end of our leg, or segment of the race. Each runner ran 3 legs throughout the race, rotating throught their numbers. So, runners 1-12 ran one leg each, and then runner 12 handed the baton back to runner 1 to start a second set.

decorating the vans

The first day was pretty gloomy and drizzly, which gave us a lot of dramatic appeal ;)

breakfast at Dunkies

Before the race we had to stock up on Dunkies. The vans were also packed with snacks, first aid kits, water, and safety gear for night running. Yes, we ran through the night, but we’ll get to that later.

breakfast at Dunkies

breakfast at Dunkies

that reminds us... cops like Dunkies...

Oh yeah, that reminds us, cops like Dunkies…

RTB starting line

Finally, we made it to the start. Every team’s start time was staggered based on their submitted runner speeds. Slower teams started earlier in the day so that everyone would finish at around the same time on Saturday. To figure out which team won the race, their total time on the course was calculated. We started about 3 hours into the race.

waiting at the starting line

And they’re off!

moving to transition area 1

Now we need to move both of our vans and the rest of our runners to transition area 2, where runner 1 will pass the baton to runner 2.

waiting for the first baton hand-off

The weather report told us we were going to have a sunny run, but the morning definitely took a turn for the rainier as our second runner was about to take off.

baton hand-off

the cops have caught up with the robbers

The vans were able to meet runners on the course to give them water and… motivation. :D

and cops always win!

I think he got the message!

baton pass fail

baton recovery

keeping motivated on the course

finishing up leg 8

proper baton pass

a well earned check mark

let the night runs begin

The baton pass after this was to… me! So this is the end of shooting for day 1 because when I got back the course was dark and I was ready for a nap. You know sleeping in a van isn’t all that bad…. unless you are woken up by a herd of cows.

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