Sorry it has taken so long to post about this one. For those that don't know already it was another DNF and I really hate writing about DNF's. I will spare the gory details but the race deserves a little report at least.
Overall this is an excellent event and I can highly recommend it for the organization and volunteers. They put on a top notch event with good aid stations, especially the main one at the start/finish where they had and were cooking a large variety of food as well as many of the usual aid station far. The only downside is that the course gets really boring very quickly. It is a flat out and back, 25 miles round trip that is repeated 4 times. There are a few nice views along the way and the bridges and small villages are interesting but mostly just the canal , the towpath and trees. Unfortunately the trees offer no shade for 23 of 25 miles each lap. This could be a very fast course in ideal weather but even with the somewhat mild 80F day, it felt VERY hot all afternoon with the sun bearing down.
My race started out ok but I was in pain from the first step. I had tweaked my hamstring two weeks before getting ready for a 5k, racing it and then doing speedwork two days later. Yes, it was a very dumb thing to do especially considering that I was aiming for a pr here . But anyway, I was hoping it would hold up for the distance and the pain would ease off after I got warmed up for a couple of miles but sadly it never stopped hurting. I was running quite well despite the pain for the first 25 miles and on pace for the pr but as I headed out for the second lap it just kept getting weaker. By 31 I could barely run at all and even walking fast was now hurting it quite a bit. My pace slowed so much over the next 6.5 miles that at the rate I was moving I would not even be able to move fast enough to make the 30 hour cutoff even with the nice cushion I had built the first lap. So I reluctantly gave up at th 37.5 mile turn around aid station not wanting to do further damage for nothing.
Jenn the Ultra Angel of course accompanied me on this trip and she was still in the race so I became her crew. She had really struggled with the heat and was having a tough time getting in calories. But she is tough and hung in there and even picked the pace back up on the last lap to finish strong in just over 25 hours.
Here is a link to some pictures I took from the race.