YHC started thinking of this thing soon after our last relay, the Tuna 200 in eastern NC last October. After identifying the relay it was noted that there is a lottery for getting a spot. You had to sign up for the lottery in February. The relay is in October… thankfully we got a spot. To say that we had this mapped out for a while is an understatement.
So its only fitting that we had a few kinks in the plan along the way, most of which were super close to the actual event. YHC came up lame with a hamstring issue, Stroganoff has had an ongoing respiratory problem (get better soon brother) so we needed to find a couple of replacements and to top things off the good Lord blessed us with a hurricane to see us off on our journey! Good times!!!
Thursday finally came and we were to meet at 10 in the remote lot on Frank’s property. Mayor beat YHC to the gravel spot in the drive by just a few seconds so I relocated Van 1 to the grass. Once everyone got there we were ready to shove off promptly at 10:30. Even though HIPAA was 30 minutes late, he made up for it with pumpkin gift baskets for all the runners in our van, complete with a bottle of Maker’s Mark! It had poured down rain for hours before we left so our fully loaded down van struggled to do more than plow through the soggy field but we eventually barely made it out to the road.
The drive out of town was crappy but once we got to the mountains the rain stopped and the rest of our drive was really nice. We made our first stop at the Zaxby’s in Waynesville for a lunch break. This is where YHC unveiled the gifts that were sure to calm any disagreements, inflammations or general Sandy V’s. The gift that keeps on giving, Down There wipes and Vagicaine ointment, for when things get a little itchy in the vans.
On we drove with nice blue skies up the interstates of Tennessee and Kentucky, hopped off to cut across to our first night’s stay place of Bardstown, KY. After checking in and debugging at least one of our beds, we walked, yes walked, at least 5 blocks to downtown in search of food. Since the Rickhouse was too high falutin for our crew we settled on Mammy’s Kitchen. It was good. On the way back some of us made a pit stop in the corner liquor store to see the local selection. It was good too.
We woke up the next morning after a good night’s sleep ready for our start at Jim Beam distillery. It was kind of chilly but perfect running weather. YHC led us off so Freight wouldn’t feel like we were taking it easy on him. I felt pretty good on my run and handed the slap bracelet to Quiche. Of course he crushed his run but somehow got blown away by some freak of nature running a sub 6 minute mile. Wojo took the baton for his run through downtown Bardstown. We drove ahead as usual to find our next stop was at the Heaven Hill Bourbon experience.
FREE BOURBON!!! The pre-race literature had to have reiterated there would be no drinking during the relay. These chicks must not have gotten that memo because they were pouring as much as you’d like to have. A couple of different bourbons including bourbon iced tea. My personal fav was Larceny. It was great. Basically we were not even done with leg 3 and already throwing down at 10:30 in the morning.
Back to the relay. Wojo motored up the ridiculously steep last hill to hand off to Edison. We followed and made the next exchange for Boudin to get going. His leg was insanely hilly, both up and downhill. Glad he’s such a bid deal and can handle it. He handed off to Broke somewhere in the middle of nowhere and we drove on to the big exchange zone, Maker’s Mark distillery. Broke handed off to Oompa Loompa and van 1’s first set was done.
FREE BOURBON!!! This place was pretty awesome. The next time you’re in KY and have time to drive to the middle of nowhere you should go to Maker’s Mark. Super nice facility and grounds, almost like a park. And they have bourbon.
We moseyed across the countryside to Danville, KY where the next big exchange zone was to happen. It was different than any other relay exchange zone I’ve been to because it was in a city, almost no green space to be found. Most of us in the van brought our vaginas so we spread out beside a drive through teller for some shuteye. Of course no one really slept, just rested mostly. Boudin went looking for beer because, well, he’s Boudin.
Once it was time to switch, YHC took the slap bracelet from Def Leppard to run 4.6 miles onto the quickly darkening route. I felt pretty good. Thanks Freight. Quiche, Wojo, Edison, Boudin.
Boudin handed off to Broke at the same place YHC took the slappy from Def. It started raining. Then it started raining harder. And it was dark. It was not good. We drove ahead to spend time with the other van. YHC made a visit to them and noticed there was a bit of angst going on. SV?
We switched off to Oompa and the drove through the pouring rain up to Lawrenceburg, home of Four Roses Distillery and Wild Turkey Distillery. This is where we tried to get some more shut eye. We were one of the first vans there so some of us snored in the van. Broke, Quiche and I slept outside beside a rackhouse. It’s funny how even though you’re super tired it never quite seems like you get to sleep. There’s always the Bang…boom boom of the port-a-potty door.
Freight came down the hill after a super hard leg to hand off to Wojo (we switched so his hips wouldn’t have to lie any more). Quiche went off for his super fast leg. YHC took the baton for a painful last one. Edison was a beast. Boudin went along through horse country on to Woodford Reserve which was a cool smaller distillery.
NO free bourbon. What’s up with that? They had coffee though.
Broke went off to the next EZ to meet van 2. He got there and handed off to Oompa. By this time we were all pretty much done with running, including van 2. Hang in there brothers.
Van 1 was done and hungry. We drove toward Lexington in search of grub, hopefully good stuff too. We settled on Denny’s…. Denny’s….Denny’s? Yes Denny’s. I’m not sure how we arrived at this choice but we did. It was an experience. YHC got a whole tray of water spilled toward me (some would say it was my fault but it wasn’t). After about 45 minutes of waiting for breakfast we got some food. Wojo’s wasn’t even cooked fully. Disaster…
We drove on to the finish area and actually found a great pizza place that served good beer right at the finish line. YES!!! There wasn’t much to do for a while and it was cold so we went back inside the mall area to hang out. Broke got pornographic on a bench. Had to be there.
Van 2 got in but got a call from Freight that he couldn’t go any further. HIPAA to the rescue! Van 2 rode him to switch with Freight. We made our way back to the finish to see HIPAA round the corner and the Van 2 wasn’t even back so YHC had to stop him from finishing so we could do it together as a team. After about 30 minutes (actually it was about 5) the others got to the finish and we crossed the line together as a team! AYE!!!
FREE BOURBON!!! Pretty cool finish experience where we sampled up to 4 different varieties. Too bad they weren’t selling that stuff.
We departed about 4:30 down the road to Richmond, home of Eastern Kentucky University. As luck would have it, I think we were part of the presidential motorcade to the university where president Trump was to hold a rally. Being the Gashouse crew that we are, we stopped on the interstate to let Edison drain his weasel. Now that’s funny! I think Trump even waived at him from the limo as he passed by.
Moleskin: I love you guys and relays are a unique way of spending good quality time together. Sorry so late for the backblast.