Page 39 - AZ Extreme - AEM Volume 8 Issue 1
P. 39

got too settled in, the silt began to build in   then down-shifted to 3rd. I remember
  sections and I tried to stay on the left side, so my now good eye could see the deep sections. Before I knew it, the front wheel washed out and I slammed the ground. Full face plant and chest pile drive into the earth at about 50mph. I took a few minutes to sort everything out and got going. With this slam I knew I had several ribs damaged and possible shoulder tear. I didn’t care, I was to finish at all costs.
looking for people who must have put up this display thinking, it’s not Halloween? WTF? As I got about 100 feet from this, my brain switched this image to what it was. It was a huge shadow from a cliff that was moving as I got closer. My brain was seeing flat objects as 3D images. Ha-ha, I yelled WOW, Holy . . . WTF! I grabbed a handful and pinned it as long as I could.
Coming into La Paz was an amazing feeling. What I didn’t expect was when we get into La Paz, there was still 30 more miles if winding and twisting through the town. These last 30 miles seemed like I was going in circles. There was of course more whoops and soggy silt to deal with, then finally it opened up to the streets of La Paz. It was so emotional seeing thousands of people lining dozens of streets cheering and yelling for racers. The people of La Paz really made us feel like rock stars! They allowed us to rip through their town and seemed like everyone was outside cheering, ringing bells and giving thumbs up. Once through the dirt roads
I got back up to pace and focused on
keeping my heart rate down and relax.
I was pounding whoops again and they
seemed endless. I started to drift in and
out of reality. My right eye was almost
swollen shut, my left eye actually turned
into my dominant eye and I learned to
ride fast with just the one eye. About
RM-1080 I started seeing the mountain
shadows play tricks with me. The
course was weaving through a road half
routed through some small mountains. I
remember when the road straighten up I
saw a huge five-story witch on a broom
with flowing hair. She was rocking from
front-to-back and then she was tipping
her head. I was approaching her at about
80mph, down-shifted as I got closer,   of La Paz, we got on the highway again
for five miles, then made a left into the finish line arena. I made the last turn and saw the checkered flags! I was so relieved, so proud and so emotional this was the end. I gave every ounce of energy and was so mentally drained it was an out-of- body experience. I made it to the stage and my wife was the first to hug me. She was all tears of joy and so were my kids, then the team one-by-one hugged me. It was an indescribable feeling of joy. I was so grateful they were all there to share the energy at the finish line. I will continue to tell all of them, I couldn’t have done it without them, this is a fact! Without all the nutrition and support from them over the hours of the race, I would probably still be sleeping at RM-610. I made it to the top of the stage to give the finish interview and was on Cloud 9. I kept it together, but for the most part was really emotional to be there standing. As we made it to the truck I was greeted with tons of high fives, picture requests and signed autographs. Managed to finish 5th out of 19 in Ironman Class and it felt great! Knowing only six solo riders finished and I was the fastest “Ironman Rookie” made it a bit sweeter. It was everything a dream race could live up to.
We spent a few days in a beautiful home on the hill in La Paz. I didn’t move much and took another IV the following day. We went to dinner and saw some other racers throughout the next few days and shared stories. We had some issues getting on the Ferry . . . well they didn’t actually let us on. Apparently everyone who departs Mexico by boat must have their passport stamped at the border. Years ago we got these in La Paz at the airport. If your flying out of Mexico it’s no problem to stamp them. Leaving by boat or car is a problem. So we had to make the journey back north up the peninsula. This proved to be another experience and added a few more days to our trip. We only almost died three times, so it was easy . . . Ha-Ha
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