Stage 2 of the tour was the ultra-classic Trifecta: Freeway on the Second Flatiron to the East Face of the First Flatiron to the East Face of the Third Flatiron. Every scrambler knows these routes and every time the course covers them the field size increases. With no possibility of anyone getting lost or confused, my chances of doing well drop precipitously.
We ran this stage two years ago and Matthias set the course record in a time of 57:39. He was the only one to break an hour. This year the field was faster.
The field was so large that we split into two waves, two minutes apart. I divide the field by whoever ran under 1h20m in stage one and that put me (1h09m in stage one) last in the first wave. When I ran by Sheri, who was taking photos, I wasted valuable oxygen, saying "I'm not last. Second wave in two minutes." To add more injury to humiliation, I got caught and passed on the Second Flatiron by Michal. I didn't know him?! Yeah, what was he doing here? If you are going to bandit a Minion race have the decency to stay behind Satan, please. And it got worse. As he went by he says, "I hope I'm still doing this when I'm your age."
|The Minions flying up the East Face of the First Flatiron|
Up ahead, the real battle was raging.
Kyle and Cordis - the youth brigade - continued their battle, destined to last the entire Tour. Per the script, Kyle barely stays ahead of Cordis on the rocks and tries to hold onto his lead on the run out. This time Cordis made a number of moves to pass Kyle on the Third, the last of the scrambles, but couldn't get it done. Kyle stayed in the lead on the rappel and even down the talus back to the smoother trail, but then Cordis, the faster pure runner, ran him down and took his first stage victory ever. They both broke the course record, finishing in 56:16 and 56:27. Jason Killgore became only the fourth scrambler to break an hour when he took third in 59:50.
|Colleen rapping off the First Flatiron|
I took my son Derek in the first stage, but only because it was his first stage ever and it was long and had a couple of tricky downclimbs and he got a bit lost on the descent. By ignoring all that, I was able to convince myself I might have a chance to retain the family title. Alas, I'm getting a huge dose of reality in this year's Tour. Derek left me at the start and widened the gap the whole way. He was chasing Danny, but Danny pulled away from him. Derek was running scared, not wanting his dad to catch him, when he got to the Third Flatiron. Fellow Minion Jon Sargent was there with his daughter taking photos. Injury put him out of the Tour this year. He asked Derek, "Where's your dad?", but in Derek's hypoxic state he heard "There's your dad" and thought I was right behind him. He thinks, "Crap!" and looks over his shoulder. I'm not there.
|Cordis pegging the effort to take the win over Kyle by just 11 seconds.|
I zipped down the line and ran scared all the way back to the finish, holding Nikita off. I finished 17th out of 35 in a time of 1:15:45. Derek was 13th in 1:11:48. Derek had to out run Craig, a running specialist, but not with the pure speed of a 19-year-old. Sonia set the women's course record in 1:27:03 and four women finished the course.
|Satan's Minions after Stage 2|
|Kyle and Cordis recovering after an hour of intense competition.|