The Nooksack River was very high this year. Not as high as last year, when they canceled the canoe portion of the race, but high enough that there was no sand at the river's edge to watch the racers come in. There was a short strip coming up the slope to the mountain bikers that was fenced off with a green mesh. I would say only about 20 spectators could fit comfortably behind it and actually see racers come in...but about 40+ spectators crammed themselves in. When we heard Sean's team number called (meaning they had passed under the Main Street bridge), my friend Michelle stayed with her kids and Guyan playing in the woods at Hovander Park, and Owen and I ran down to see Sean come in.
And here they are! The guy with the helmet is the mountain bike racer, the next leg in the race. The guy on the right at the front of the canoe is Dan, and you can see Sean at the back of the canoe (at least his legs and his hat). Sean was disappointed that I didn't get a good picture of him. "Get in the front of the boat next time," I told him.
But you know, not even that would guarantee a good picture. In 2006, he also did the canoe leg, and was in the front of the boat. Here are the two pictures I have of them coming in (look at all that sand--but I think I'd trade it for the fabulous weather we had this year), and he's not facing the camera in either of them.
Back to current day...Dan and Sean did pretty well in their leg. They had only about a half an hour of training, but at least an hour of strategizing. Their team, overall, came in 186th out of 414 (always nice to be in the top half), and 18th out of 69 in the Recreational Mixed Division. Within the canoe leg only, they were 125th overall, and 10th in their division (whoo-hooo!!!). Both Sean and Dan finished better than they had when they raced in the canoe leg in previous years, with different partners. Just imagine if they had practiced more. What studs.