The Race, Day 1:
The first day was wet and very muddy. Kate, a Canadian-Norwegian was bitten badly by a large dog but still managed to come in 4th overall. There are some very fast women here this year.
Tom had a tough first day. No major problems but lots of little issues that added up to a frustrating day that was slower than he had hoped for. Three mud was horrible and in spite of being very tired he had to do a loot of work on his bike. On the up side, the route was beautiful, the day not too hot and our hotel was a lovely stone B&B in a farm setting. Homemade everything for breakfast including yogurt. It reminded me of my grandma.
The massage area was chaos the first night. We all did our best, but it was tough. All of us working until 11 pm at least. I did 12 massages. This will be my own endurance event of sorts.
Riders were already starting to show signs of fatigue. Kate had another great day in spite of her dog bite. A lady in an older age group is also doing very well, Anne Van de Broeke. In this race people start at different times depending on statistics related to gender and age. This means that Anne starts earlier than anyone else. But whoever crosses the finish first winds the stage regardless of how they started. It makes it very exciting because it is quite possible for a woman to win a stage and the young boys all have to chase her down.
Tom had a great day. He felt good, rode all the technical parts well and finished much better than the previous day.
I got worked. 13 massages and couldn't fall asleep until 1am. Back up again at 7 the next morning to eat and head out to the first check point for today.
Anne and Kate came through the first check point first as expected. I became worried when Tom did not come through with his group. It got later and still no Tom. Finally Tom's brother Rich, came through and let me know that Tom had a flat. Not good, but better than an injury. When Tom came through he let me know that he had already had many adventures I will get more of the story later.
Off to the fancy hotel. If we get there soon enough I will get to swim. By the time any one at home reads this, I will be elbow deep in massages.
To be continued...