Team Magnusson is riding the Stage Stop roller coaster. Up and down we go Weeeeeeeeeeee! This sport reminds me why my favorite word is the “F” word and today I was also reminded that it was this sport that got me addicted to Red Bull. We didn’t have time to stop and get beverages this morning on the way to the race site and I thought I’d be okay with some I had purchased earlier. Well, at -6 degrees all I had was a few bottled ice cubes. So by the time the race was over and we got to a gas station, I was peeing dark and probably ready to be put on IV’s. I stood at the refrigerator and there was a shelf of Red Bull. In my tired, stressed state it appeared to be pulsating in the window and I swear it was calling my name. Bruce walked by and said rather loudly, “NO!” It was enough to tear me out of my coma. I needed something other than water though. Water just wasn’t going to cut it. Beer sounded good, but since I’m on the job that would have to wait. I settled for a bottle of Neuro Bliss.
The bottle promised: “Helps reduce Stress” “Enhances mood” “Provides focused concentration” “Promotes a positive outlook” “Happiness in every bottle”! HELL YEAH, I need a case
So I am blissfully typing my blog as we make the 2 ½ – 3 hour drive to Lander and I notice that we are following the Streeper Rig. On the back of the rig is a giant picture of their dog team just tearing it up. I suddenly have a desire to call trail. This is the closest we’ve been to their team this year. I tell Bruce I’m going to write a sign that says, “TRAIL” and then I try to convince him to make the pass as it will be good for his mental state. See, I’m a handler with psychological coaching techniques in my back pocket! He looked at me as if I had drank a case of the beer. Whateva, just be a follower I told him!
So it was a tad chilly this morning at the race site at -6F, but was expected to climb to 19F! They appeared to have some fresh new snow in the past week. We ran the trail out of Cora parking lot, which is a 43 mile loop. At the musher meeting they told everyone the trail would be groomed for the first part yesterday and it should be hard and fast. At the top of the mountain they said it was expected to be windy and the trail could be blown in, but it would have a base. They recommended that everyone booty due to the cold and conditions at the top of the mountain. There it is again, that damn booty conversation. Frankly, I’m tired of this conversation. “Are you going to booty? Are you? How about you?” I think we changed our decision 5 times this morning and we finally went with no booties except bad feet. It was the right decision. I have been amazed thus far at how well our feet have held up and today was no exception. I think we dialed in on the magic formula. Weeeeeeeeee!
Bruce had a great run and we’ve heard rumors that we are in the top 5 again, but that remains to be seen when the results are in. Dogs ran the way we trained and he was ecstatic at how they climbed. He feels they are climbing better than any team we’ve had in the past. As usual, we are learning new things daily. We’re learning the things we did right in the training and seeing some things that we missed. We didn’t get a chance to evaluate the team properly last year due to the illness and so it is exciting to see the training efforts come to fruition.
We’ve just stopped and fed the dogs and made the pass on the Streeper team. We are now in the lead; we’re going to enjoy this while it lasts!!! It’s feeling pretty good.
We heard Lander was going to be 40F tomorrow; however, it is in the teens right now and it is snowing like hell in the pass. Lander has over 6 inches of fresh snow in town. Hmmmm, not sure it will be a hard and fast trail like they promised.
Results are in and we pulled off 3rd place. Whooot Hoot!!!