Snow to Surf Race Report

Snow to Surf 2012.jpg

Woohooo!  What an awesome weekend in the Valley:) 

The Royal Lepage Snow to Surf Relay celebrated its 30th anniversary in the Valley this Sunday and over 200 teams of 9 came out to share in the celebration!  Team ELM was out in full force once again with Team ELM Women...times two!  This year ELM entered two womens teams so we had twice as much fun and twice as many laughs and there was twice as much screaming and cheering...if you can imagine that!  By the end of the day I could barely talk- I was so hoarse from cheering:)  Check out all the fun photos on the ELM Facebook page here.

Race day starts in the night before with our annual team potluck and this year with 18 of us we had a crazy awesome buffet spread to fuel us for the race.  We spent the evening meeting new friends, catching up with old friends and planning the logistics of getting 18 women from Mount Washington to the Comox Marina and beer gardens.  It's harder than you think!

Race morning and the threat of rain subsided which, I am sure, made every racer out there happy:)  It was a cool morning but by the time the race started at 9:15am it was the perfect temperature for a race. 

I didn't have anyone to shuttle this year, so I enjoyed a leisurely morning, arrived at bike check for 9:45...went for a 45minute ride on the course to warm up...then got lined up in the chute by about 10:45.  My runner, Diana, was in the chute by 11am which is faster than normal so we were off to a good start!  My leg went well- no mechanicals, no issues, all good.  I left it all on the course including half of a lung I think.  From the start it was push the hardest rings possible as fast as possible until the single track.  About 10 minutes on the logging road then another 30 in a mix of single and double track all the way out to Comox Lake made for a hard 40 minute effort.  Much more fun with some extra trails thrown in this year and less double track...more mountain biking is always welcome in a mountain bike race!  Red line all the way and sprint into the lake transition, super skid (oops) and jello leg sprint to reach my kayaker, Janine...woohoo!  I was so fired up I ran right by her before realizing I didn't know where her boat was:)  I nearly let her tip, she got a hip soaker and almost went in the drink before I got it together to steady her...gave her a little push... then she was off!  After some hi 5's and pics I jumped back on my bike and rode to Cumberland to watch my road biker, Audrey whiz by after transitioning with the kayak. 

My favourite part about the snow to surf is spending the day with the girls and running from transition to transition to scream and cheer!  The anticipation is intense and it builds throughout the day...this year it was especially high because we were within minutes of another womens team throughout the entire race!  Knowing they were only a few minutes ahead of us was huge motivation to push even harder on our legs and in the end Audrey caught and passed them to take us into the lead during the road bike leg...our canoer's Rani & Lyse held the gap...crossing the line first and winning by just 2 minutes!

Team ELM crossed the line 26th overall, 1st place womens team overall in a personal best team time of 4hours 8 minutes!  Masters women to boot!  I am the baby on our team and hold us back from the Grand Masters category because I am still in my 30's.  We have at least 100 years on the next Masters team and I am so inspired by the kick butt women who are 20 and even close to 30 years my senior on our team...you rock! 

Team ELM two also set a personal best at their very first Snow to Surf together!  They came 4th in the Masters women category and worked hard for every second.  So awesome to see so many ELM women on the course with huge smiles, endless hugs and photo op's at every transition:)  I am looking forward to cheering for two teams again next year- double the fun!

Thank you for such a great day ladies!  Can't wait until next year!! 

Team ELM Women :: Team ELM Women Too

Uphill Run/Downhill Ski:  Deb Rolston :: Kim Senechal

X Country Ski: Lo Lanning :: Lynn Swift

Downhill Run 1: Kathy Campbell :: Deb Adams

Downhill Run 2: Diana Olsen :: Crystal Mather (and junior LOL:)

Mt Bike: Me :: Barb Cook

Kayak: Janine Martin :: Patty Johnson

Road Bike: Audrey Erlandson:: Pascale Houde

Canoe: Lyse Fortin & Rani Johns :: Arran Kerrigan & Deb Berg

Congratulations! 

HUGE thank you to the race organizers and the hundreds of volunteers who were out on the course making this event happen once again.  It was awesome to see so many smiling volunteers on the course and I can't thank you enough.  Without you there would be no Snow to Surf race and this town wouldn't be nearly as fun:)  Thanks so much for making it happen!

Cheers to 2013!

Sarah.