Last weekend I had the honor and privilege to crew my good friend Craig Thornley at the Grindstone 100. Most of the details of the race are covered in his report that can be found here but a couple additional thoughts are in order. I'll go with top-10 format since that is Craig's favorite medium:
10. Crewing a race is much harder than running a race. Especially when injured.
9. Sitting around a campfire at an Aid Station is a lovely thing, especially when you're not running the race. However, if David Horton is sitting around the same campfire, don't plan on getting any sleep.
8. Tweeting a race is really hard. Irunfar has it dialed. I won't be quitting my day job any time soon.
7. When a race starts at 6pm and you are crewing make sure you have a plan for staying awake. It's not easy. Beer and coffee help.
6. Neal Gorman is one tough mofo.
5. The weather in Central Virginia in mid-October is amazing. Kind of makes staying up all night for two days straight seem worth it.
4. Clark Zealand is an outstanding Race Director. He goes about his business in a calm, dignified way and makes every runner feel like they are the reason he does what he does.
3. Craig Thornley knows how to run 100 miles on his terms. Even when he's 3000 miles from home in a strange, God-Forsaken, dark, rocky land he understands that all you have to do is keep going. And, he also knows that after 96 miles there is nothing unusual about taking 10 minutes to drink four ounces of Pepsi.
2. The Grindstone 100 is poised to be the best Boutique 100 miler in the country. The combination of an outstanding race director, an extraordinary setting, a family friendly start/finish venue, and a perfect time of year this race really could become, and should become, the AC100 of the East.
1. There is no better way to cement a friendship than to crew for your friend. I know that many readers of this blog know that Craig and I often finish eachother's sentences but there is no better way to see how a team works than to actually see how a team works. Without being overly zealous I'd like to see the two of us teaming up again in the years ahead. I reckon you do too.