Thursday, June 18, 2009
Joe is on his way to Flagstaff. He had a very, very tough day! I can't tell you how many thousands of feet he climbed, including Yarnell Pass which I believe was an 8% grade for 8 miles. And it was hot too. It's all starting to run together after only a couple of hours of sleep for the crews last night. We keep telling ourselves that Joe hasn't had ANY sleep yet!! Twice today he was getting really tired - once was at 4 am. We played music over our loud speaker for him and gave him 2 pieces of Jolt gum which is like a cup of coffee. That really helped. Again he was getting tired this afternoon after Prescott. We gave him more gum and that helped. He missed a turn and we got him back on the right path. There were two climbs today that support was not allowed at all because of all the switchbacks and narrow roads. He is a real trooper. Chris and I left everyone at Cottonwood (one of the time stations) so we could come to Flagstaff and hopefully get at least 5 hours sleep. We have been up for 20 hours. I'm very nervous about Joe coming in to Flagstaff. We came up on 89A North I believe. It's beautiful in the daylight but I wouldn't want to climb in on a bike and especially not at night. At least with Eric and Caleb doing night support, it will be mandatory that they follow right behind him from 8 pm. He will need those headlights and the support! Crew is doing pretty good - tired, but hanging in there. I better call it a night and sleep while I can. Oh - almost forgot. Joe gets to sleep tonight, for a few hours anyway. I see the low in Flagstaff is about 42 degrees -- much, much colder than it has been so I'm not sure how tough it will be to get motivated and get out of bed to go ride. Thanks for reading the blog and for your support and prayers!!! In case you are wondering, it looks like Joe is in 2nd place, behind Dallas Morris by about 2 hours at this point.