Live from Chamonix, France: Preview-Ultra Tour du Mont Blanc

I can tell you that the lobby of the Hotel Alpina in Chamonix, France, is very nice, though the internet connection from www.swisscom.com was pricey.  No photos yet, but we are here for the Ultra Trail Tour de Mont Blanc, one of the most spectacular ultra-marathon trail running races in the world. The UTMB will be Deb’s first true trail running test at the 100+ mile distance. The race begins at 6:30 P.M. (Chamonix time) on Friday evening. 2200 competitors will be lined up. Less than 8% are reported to be women. Many top Americans are here to race the men’s and women’s races. Notably, on the men’s side: Karl Meltzer, Hal Koerner, Scott Jurek, and Topher Gaylord. Nikki Kimball should be favored on the women’s side. I don’t know who the top European runners are…yet, but I’m sure to find out.

I’m playing an interesting role. I have dual responsibilities to look after our son, while crewing for Deb. I have coined the term: Sherpa Dad. It aptly describes the role that results in sore muscles from lugging gear around. I will be getting support from Buddy Teaster and his family. The Teaster’s are spending a year abroad, based in Spain. Buddy blogs about their adventures.

The map of the course, shows all the challenges ahead for these runners/hikers.

Tomorrow is all about race preparation. The runners will be resting and fueling up for the 163km event. The crews will be planning the logistics involved with following the runners on the course. The runners are wearing two chips each and a cool SMS system allows anyone with text messaging on their phones to track their favorite competitors. I plan to be tracking Deb. Her race number is 2383. The website can also be used to track runners, though it is a challenge to navigate. Look for the British flag if you want to have a chance at translating the technical French.

That is all for now. A report on our afternoon in Geneva, Switzerland, and other adventures will be forthcoming. Now, back to the race preparation.

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So that little injury caused by my @renocxnats crash on Saturday afternoon wasn’t so little after all. It’s a broken leg (fibula). Prognosis is good, but it hurts like heck. My blog post report with blow by blow details is linked in my profile. #cxnats #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #crossisboss - - -

This #lifedeathcyclocross stuff is true!!!! I crashed out of the Singlespeed Championship @renocxnats (on the dreaded off-camber) but not before having more fun. @artroti43 raced on the frosty course ❄️ at day break. 🚴🏽 We met a lot more @horsteng #crossspikes customers. I hung with little bunny hopper 🐰 Miles, the Junior 11-12 year old Silver Medalist.🥈I cheered for Nic, who represented @the_ccap in the Junior 15-16 age group. @sportstert and Iva came down from Tahoe to cheer LOUDLY for me. 🎺 I got my badly sprained ankle taped and iced. I had a beer. 🍺 I’m even looking forward to my red eye flight home ✈️ . Best of all, I’ll see @trailrunningmom and the kids on Sunday. I can’t explain the sensation, but despite the pain, I’m ready for next #Cyclocross season to begin... after some rest. #teamhorstsports #cxnats #horstengineering @parkavebikeshop #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross #crossiscoming You could say that at least for this week, I’m married to my #bicycle - - -

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@seven_cycles #sevencycles #horstengineering #teamhorstsports @bicycleseastct #crossspikes #cxnats #renocxnats #Cyclocross #crossisboss @therichardsachs didn’t have the race he hoped for but it was still great to see him @renocxnats and “pit” for him. He said he officially started his second off season, but first of 2018. @artroti43 and I played soigneur/mechanic for 90 minutes, but minus the massage! atmo #renocxnats #richardsachs #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #hauteframebuilding #Cyclocross #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross I previously hadn’t published this image, but it recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2017 @appalachianmountainclub Photo Contest for the People Outdoors category. Check out my blog (link in profile) for the interesting story of his photo (shot with this iPhone 6s), a trip report from this amazing Maine adventure, and past contest history. I love this image of two of my favorite women. I’m barred from submitting images to the 2018 contest, but I’ll be back in 2019. #appalachianmountainclub #baxterstatepark #katahdin Congratulations to Master Park, the Park Family, and the entire team at Park’s U.S. #Taekwondo at the Grand Opening of the new facility in the former VFW building. Our kids love it! So much better than being next door to the pawn shop and liquor store.😊#tkd 🇺🇸🇰🇷 This morning, the @trinitycollege Main Quad was bathed in beautiful sunshine ☀️but it was frigid and the wind was blowing! ❄️ The chapel was packed with an overflow crowd to celebrate the (shortened) life of a lovely friend. She will be missed. #circleoflife 🌏 #Repost @horsteng
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