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June 15, 2010 / teamoperationprogress

Day 2 – Progress Report

Day 2:   Progress Report

With over four hundred miles under their belts on Day One and an all star crew to support, Team Operation Progress headed into Arizona confidently. Just over 24 hours into the race and covering nearly 500 miles of terrain, Arizona became the team’s biggest challenge of endurance and will power.  With the topography of Arizona reaching peaks of over 8,000 feet and valleys as low as 500 feet, just above sea level, Team OP had to face the obstacles of sleep deprivation, muscle fatigue as well as a steady crosswind creating severe dust devils.  As the sun descended and  the temperature dropped drastically from 80 degrees down to 60 degrees, Fran, Mark and Nancy traded off climbing a treacherous, uphill, windy road in the Prescott National Forest to an elevation of 7,000 feet.  Mark (Bionic) Burson, who deserves the over acheiver award for the day, brought the mountain to its knees, while Nancy, the teams oldest female rider at 60, gave a praise of joy when she reached the summit of the mountain as heavenly purple clouds glowed off the sunset.

Waiting at the top of the summit was speed queen, Kristina who then took an epic 8 mile, 4,000 foot descent. into the Flagstaff Arizona area.  She reached the bottom of the hill in ten minutes in the dark and  was all smiles and fists were pumping.  Exhausted and burnt out from the grueling day, the race team then met up with the crew captains to discuss strategy for going forward, their focus of the meeting was how to allow more recovery time for each rider.  They decided each would begin riding longer and further distances.

In typical fashion, the first one to volunteer to give the other three riders a break was the Team Captain Kristina, who then pulled 30 miles during a night ride of nearly three hours and into the sunrise.

Just after sunrise, monarch butterflies migrated across the indigo colored sandstone rock in the Navajo Nation.  Nancy fluttered along with the butterflies as she approached the eighth wonder of the world, Monument Valley. Fran danced on her pedals with grace all the while taking in beauty of the towering monumental rocks.   With the team recharged and a tailwind at our back, we head out of Arizona towards Utah state border.  The teams goal is to get to Durango, Colorado by the dawn of day three.

See you on Day 3 with more!!!


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