Friday September 5th the gun went off at 8:00am and that's when I accepted the roll of crewing John. The day before I learned that my friend Alissa St. Laurent who was running the 100K didn't have crew. I volunteered to help her whenever I could. Cumulatively during those two days I ended up sporadically crewing many of my buddies which I found exhilarating.
John would run the first two laps (106K) then I'd join him for the final 54K. All throughout the day I drove from aid station to aid station helping out as many runners as possible. The front runners would make their way through the aid stations as quick as possible whereas most runners would arrive at the stations, regroup, fuel and get back out on the trail. The stations are always one of a kind. Stocked with slushy machines, BBQ salmon, bacon, burgers, a ton of fruit and yes...even a chocolate fondu machine! It's impossible to leave an aid station not feeling upset you can't stay longer.
|Over eager pacer|
Meanwhile, John was sitting comfortably in 3rd or 4th place for the first 50M. He looked strong and in control whereas his competitors were starting to show signs of fading. I knew that John's strength was really going to come into play into the wee hours of the morning. John is a very mentally strong dude who always needs to finish what he started. John and I do loads of training together. We feed off each other's energy and our meeting time is almost always at night after the kids go down to bed. Night running and John Hubbard went together like peanut butter and jam. We would run so often at night it almost seemed strange to run during daylight hours. Running at night after a long work day sucks and we'd often say "Embrace the suck!" I proudly wore my shirt displaying that very saying while I crewed my best bud that race day.
|Heading out on final north loop|
|John and Majo after finishing|
As I reflect on what happened that night I think of how John and I met. Our friendship was forged by running at night, it only seems fair that running all through the night at Johnny's first 100 miler would be the definitive and most rewarding experience we have had together.
Photos courtesy of Daniel Bowie