Leg 1 - Marci Martin and I are packed in closely with lots of runners. Then we are let loose with a bugle blast to start us off. I am boxed in somewhat, but try to stay calm and not make any crazy moves. Soon I get my chance to find my own pace and things thin out somewhat. Running on crushed gravel. The kids 1.5 mile race started with us about 3 tenths of a mile into it, some of them are walking and/or looking back with fear. Sharp turn with railroad tracks to consider at .4 miles. Then a nice "long" straight section of pavement. I catch, then run along side a woman, but no words are exchanged. I have found a nice pace. Soon I move ahead of her, and then have to make multiple turns on the sidewalk, dodge some landscape equipment and follow the blue marks on the ground to stay on the right path. 6:56 first mile. Two little kids in front of me, I am very impressed with the way they look. One girl is right in front of me as we make the last sharp turn back to the gravel. She grabs the fence post and swings herself around the turn most gracefully. I don't dare try. But I am able to turn it on and pass her. Scanning for Bill as I approach the finish. There he is, we make a good exchange and I am done....for a few minutes anyway. 10:19 or 6:53 pace.
Leg 2 - Gasping for air, but happy with my run I stagger around a bit. Not looking forward to the next leg but I have ten minutes or so to get back in control. I walk over to the far side of the loop and cheer on runners. Here comes Bill and I tell him to slow down so I have more time to rest. But he keeps plowing along and I need to get back to the exchange area.
Leg 3 - Runners are so spread out now and the exchange will be easy as I see Bill approaching with no one directly in front of him. I get the baton and head right out at too fast a pace. Legs feel a little jelly like and I see that I am at 6:05/mile pace, so I ease up a bit searching for a more reasonable tempo. The second time around is uneventful. No one close enough to chase down. My pace slows to 7:08/mile. The really fast guys are about to lap me but I am able to hand off to Bill before that happens.
Leg 4 - Recover, then watch the runners and wait for Bill. He comes in at the same pace as his first lap and we are both happy with our efforts. I really enjoyed seeing all the kids and adults of various abilities. Lots of families running together or as relay teams. Great community event that goes on my growing list of must do again races.
27th place of 102, 12th of 23 in the male/male relay division