Tarawera Ultra 2017 Report – Relay Team

Report by Sandra Jensen

Relay teams are the new black.

Our super masters ladies team of epic-ness were under prepared and vaguely sorted and plans were afoot for a party bus to Rotovegas but that didn’t happen. Needless to say the event and whole day went swimmingly minus the extreme nausea that didn’t subside until we were passing through Cambridge on the way back home.

Runner one, the ever-smiling Ellie Broadbridge, started with a blast and we aimed to cheer her at every opportunity. Getting confused with another event’s finish line at the Blue Lake we quickly made it to the transition point trying to spy as many other folk we could and yell at them. The topless lady was a constant highlight as was the lady with very white teeth.

Next was Trish. Off onto the hill of doom. She rocked it despite her spasming calve muscle which resembled a small alien trying to emerge but she seemed to enjoy herself. The bus ride to and from Okataina was a highlight as always and a near-death experience.

Next was Jenni on to leg 3. The most scenic of the legs and one I’d have done had I not yet done leg 4. She bought cake with her. We like her.

The parking on the road to the Falls was abysmal with people parking wherever they wanted to so I had to change quick-smart in the car as running in jeans and jandals was not going to cut it. Jenni emerged looking like she’d just run 20kms in the heat, oh wait she had, and then I was off.

The joy of passing so many…walkers quickly diminished when I realised all those poor buggers had already done at least 30-odd kms before me, if not more. But I loved most of the run. A place I’d never run before and it was a bit of everything. The heat didn’t hit till the last horribly long 5km (why is it always like that) and I felt the waves of nausea hit, resisting the urge to jump in the river or quit right then and there.

I finished. It was fun. The first aid tent looked reassuring and my team mates chose not to run the finish with me like a badly written chick flick. We aren’t that touchy feely.

Would I do it again? Yes. Now if Kevin would just put down the cake we can wish Ellie a happy birthday.