vol stare toad race

3 and a half day update


the competitive race has suddenly become very exciting…


ok, not suddenly.

nothing happens suddenly in the vol state.


during the blistering hot afternoon johan steene made up more ground

and we go into the night with john wright past tracy city at 284 and heading for the mountain mart at the top of that horrible descent into the sequatchie valley at jasper.

only 6 miles back, johan is entering tracy city at 278 miles.


it is going to be a mad dash across the cumberland plateau tonight.

complicated by the fact severe thunderstorms are supposed to hit during the same time period…

it is sunny now, so we dont know if the two warriors know what is coming or not!


it is the vol state,

they should be prepared for anything!


we are preparing to head up to the rock possibly as soon as midnight!


it is a long way back to third place steve troxel at 249,

so we are fairly confident of getting to sleep in between

(i know everyone is really concerned about whether or not me and carl get any sleep this week!)

but peter strickland seems to have been making a move since shelbyville,

having cut his deficit on steve to only 10 miles.

plenty of time for that to shrink even more!

which might force steve to pick up speed and close some of our precious gap for sleeping.


the womens race has taken an even greater turn.

abby mccarthy has moved into the lead over ariela by a mile,


with both of them passing thru shelbyville.

evidence indicates she might have passed ariela sleeping somewhere,

so the race again hinges on the sleeping pattern/plans

and who makes the first decision to discard their sleeping gear and “go for the rock”


for the men,

this thing will be decided tonight.

for the women,

tomorrow morning’s checkin is going to be very revealing.

there is a lot happening tonight!


today carl brought in the first vanload of drops.

they arrived at the parking lot among the beanfields in a pouring rain

so i didnt get to talk to any of them.

they had to try and run for their cars in the rain.

not a pretty sight,

and they all got thoroughly soaked.

it probably seemed appropriate.

because, for these runners the darkness won out.


i know it has to feel like failure right now.

but failure is pulling out rather than riding the ferry.

failure is giving up after one setback.

history says that most of them have not given up.

they spent a whole day driving up thru the field

and seeing that everyone is hurt.

the only difference between the riders on the bus

and the runners still on the road

is that the runners on the bus succumbed to the darkness.


most of them had probably decided that their vol state story had not had the final chapter written long before they got back to their cars…


and now they have to think about it on that long drive home.

dont count them out yet.

Categories: Vols2022