Among the finishers, Derrick Carr was only barely eclipsed by Betsy Nye. Derrick also accumulated major BM’s for visitations – 3 consecutive mornings at Mrs. Olson’s – but it was Betsy’s remarkable performance on the bowling lanes (oh, yeah, and the beanie miles on the course) that rocketed her to 250 BM’s. Besides her two consecutive frames of gutter balls, she actually guttered seven times, and missed pins altogether 11 out of 20 opportunities. Still, she beat Bruce by 3 pins. Also receiving major points for bowling “finesse” was Nick “Mr. Style” Ham, whose gyrations approaching the foul line looked more like a toddler’s first visit to the ice rink.
The positive BM’s spread easily, first to those who had any history with either C4P or Dos Lunas (the predecessor challenge that resulted in C2M); second, to those who partook of pre-event frivolities; third, and most liberally, for almost anything that remotely entertained a Volunteer. Just being at La Jolla on Wed/Thur, plus BJ’s and Bowling, garnered a “four pack” of 40 minutes for 100M’ers, 20 minutes for 100K’ers. Actually having a standout performance at any venue snatched a few more. Nick’s dashing stance in his Blood Cloaking Device (BCD), Amy Sproston with her cuddly bull chair for testosterone dispensing, even Roch’s mindmeld with the Country Crock bowl, all yielded faster net official times on the record book. Thirty minutes each, too, to Roch and Betsy for actually eating the (meow…) dip at Gridley Top (before the moths claimed it for themselves), Roch gaining another ten minutes for guiding Betsy to it, Betsy losing ten minutes for too easily following Roch’s lead.
More than a few entrants captured Boner Minutes for disregarding action-intended pre-event e-mails. Other social gaffs in public settings usually racked up Boners, too. A couple of the more egregious Boners actually earned a few Bonus Minutes just for the entertainment value of wondering how many Boners the culprits could accumulate. Kinda like the kid in the back row of class who can’t help himself at torquing people off, they just reeled in Boners with ease. One philosophy presumes one must know the bad to appreciate the good, so all in all, there was some balance to the BM equation at C2M.
Get the impression that BM’s are frivolous and ill-defined opportunities to alter the raw data toward a more enlightened view of performance? Good guess. Perhaps we’ll improve on the theme next year…
How ‘bout them aid stations?!!? Though most of our keenly tuned volunteers have been where you were – on the receiving end of such support – we weren’t sure how the equally long hours on the course would play out for us. Stressed? Yes, but intended to find relief thru ample partying and hijinx with runners without jeopardizing support. Stressed? Yes, at Rose Valley when temps hovered 10 degrees colder than predicted – you got to climb out of it, they had to suffer in place. Jazzed? Yes, because their excitement for your being out there bled into their own operations; because your appreciation for them being there kept them working to continue the support. The Ranch? We think, a keeper. You decide: yea, you’ll be back; nay, you won’t.
Of course, the staggered start and repetitive out ‘n backs / ups ‘n downs under a full moon weekend more directly defined the running experience. For this first year, our rocket scientists could only guess at correlations between your other experiences on the trail and what might play out for you on this course, flavored by as much moonlight as we could force you to use. Because of the lack of credible comparability, calculated finish times – and the resultant Start Group assignments – tended to be more conservative.
We wanted to not overly stress the opportunity for you to find the finish line before the 8AM cutoff, hoping for most of you to crunch together around a 6AM, or midpoint, finish. Roughly a fourth (22) of the finishers crossed the line before 4AM, and only six after 8AM (each of them obviously spent enough time earning BM’s to result in official times that qualified them as “finisher”). A fascinating dynamic of the staggered movement along the course: at Gridley Top (roughly 4 miles to the Finish), watching lights approach from Cozy Dell, we couldn’t tell fershur until the runners entered the station whether they were from the 100M 4PM Friday or 100K 5PM Saturday Start Group. Each set of lights presented a unique surprise!
It was the performance of the BOK-Q squad that will set the precedent for future C2M’s. The combination of sandbaggers Barbeau, Owens, Kumeda and Quivey’s too-quick movement on the course (Andy finished at 10:30’ish PM Saturday…) wrenched the planned aid station migrations (e.g., the Lion Cyn team splitting much earlier than anticipated, to stay ahead of the lead runners). An odd twist – where is it that the slow runners, rather than the exceptionally fast runners, throw the game out of whack? The inverse logic of C2M means we need bookend cutoffs, to corral you all within our range of planned support.
So, now that we have your guinea pig stats available, we won’t be quite so generous in subsequent calculations. For one, sandbagger performers will have to fend for themselves, or just cool their jets until the Aid Station sets up as planned (how lonely and parched was Thacher, Gilles?). And we’ll tighten down the “windows” in the calculations to put more risk to finishing before 8AM. We designed the event to challenge your ability to gauge your performance, not stress the support system to insure you could use all night, all day and all night again (oh, wait, some of you did just that) to find the Finish. So, Karl, when you return for your pre-summer season warmup, maybe we’ll start you at 10AM?
Make what you will of the numbers. The statisticians among you may be hired to help with next year’s guesstimates. The “blue sky” kids among you will look for your own and friends’ times and go quickly to the next article. Me, I’m four issues behind in my New Yorkers…
Other normal stats talked about over coffee: Weather: we had it. Different from planned, so what’s new about that? We had two gorgeous moons refereeing your movement. We’ll visit the crystal ball and ten local palm readers to predict next year’s weather. I’ll bet we have some then, too. Trail conditions: lots o’ dirt; some rocks rolled, some didn’t, all wanted to chat with you as you moved by; some trails runable (all downhills?), some suggesting cautious motion. Scenery: ah, some distinctive moments – that big yellow ball peaking above the eastern horizon, cruising across the sky (any of you run w/o flashlights?), then sliding below the ocean’s rim; the Channel Islands lazing offshore; the shimmering lights of Oxnard/Ventura. Probably have your own distinct visual references, eh?
Which brings us to your log book… It’s yours – embellish, lie, paint freely. The “official” results are mere references to tweak expanded discussion and promote fun stories for those who weren’t there. 102+ miles? Not even 23K feet of climb? Cat food?!!? C2M isn’t and won’t be just about running. It’s more about camaraderie – Leslie and Craig slugging out 100 miles together; or high fiving each other as runners pass in opposite directions; or dropping out and helping at your favorite aid station; or mellowing out with your buds and sipping on a mimosa. It’ll be the stories from different parts of the course, at different times of the day, from different runner views of the experience, that hopefully will evoke the telling over… and over… and over.
Keep the Coyote Moon with you, until we howl again…
Two Moon Buffoon