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May 14, 2011

The Day I Met Ryan and Sara Hall in an Elevator and David Torrence Bought Me a Beer

It's Saturday morning and I'm still exhausted from the Medtronic TC 1 Mile on Thursday. The day started out with loading the truck at the office, then loading my car with all the supplies we need for the press luncheon, hustling over to the hotel for said luncheon, changing clothes and setting up for press check-in.

As people started to filter in, I got a call from our office telling me that something needed to be updated on our website ASAP. I couldn't find a decent Internet connection so I grabbed my laptop and went down to the lobby. After some quick updating, I was back on the elevator up to the fourteenth floor when the elevator stopped and two people got on: Ryan and Sara Hall.

O.M.G.

Clearly I knew I'd see them at the press luncheon but wasn't prepared to be in a confined space with them. Luckily our race photographer was in the elevator with us and he started talking to them. It gave me the opportunity to pick my jaw off the floor, introduce myself, shake their hands, and tell them we were happy to have them here. I didn't even throw up or faint.

During the press conference I was tweeting like a madwoman (@tcmarathon) but did manage to get two crappy pictures with my camera.


L-R: Sara Hall, Amy Mortimer, Gabriele Anderson


L-R: Aaron Braun, Ryan Hall, David Torrence
Sorry for the quality. I was in the back of the room and  I couldn't get all paparazzi on them with my Kodak Easy Share.

After the press luncheon I stayed for the technical meeting, which is when we prep the athletes on the course, procedures and rules. Then we got to hand out their race bibs, chips and gear to them so I pretty much got to interact with the entire field.

Although I absolutely love the Halls and was obviously super excited to meet them, I didn't feel the need to take pictures with them or get their autographs. Since I was there in a work capacity, I didn't want to seem unprofessional. It was way cool to be able to interact with them like it was no big deal, like "Oh, hi Sara. Please verify your address on this sheet, fill out this form, and here's your chip and bib. Have a great race!"

After the press luncheon, we had various last minute walk-thrus and meetings before the races started. Since this is getting to be the longest post ever, I'll keep it short.

I was at the finish line for the elite waves. Women went first. Sara Hall won, broke the course record, and took home an extra $10k for breaking 4:32. Watch the replay here.

Two-time champ David Torrence gave a three-peat performance, breaking his own course record and also won the $10k for breaking 4:00. Ryan Hall came in last. Watch the replay here. David's kick at the end is epic.

After the race we had to tear down and then it was press release writing time. Without going into too much detail, we experienced some technical difficulties that resulted in us not being able to get the release out until 10:30 p.m.

Finally we were able to head to the post-race party where we ate dinner and a very excited David Torrence bought us all a round of beer. We spent the next few hours celebrating a successful race.

Then I race-walked James Hatch (the elite runner who led for the majority of the men's race) back to the hotel at 1:30 a.m.

Just another day at the office.

2 comments:

  1. What a fantastic day you had! Glad you got to meet all the elites, and thanks for putting on a flawless race!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Amazing! What an incredible experience, this is so neat to read about!
    :)

    ReplyDelete