My personal VQ **this is long...it was that kind of a day** What a day! To keep with my personal tradition of getting as little sleep as possible the night before, I managed a meager 2.5 hours the night before; nervous about what was waiting for me in the morning and excited as well. At the start I heard Debs aka Db250 voice behind me, and I wished her, Paula aka ocmtnbiker911RN and ? (it was dark) good luck. Soon after the gate was open and we were off. I decided to start up front to avoid being forced into any mud spots on Blackstar. My pace was faster than I wanted but I felt good. Jake aka c('.'c) passed me in the dark, as did Gene and some others. As I got close to Beeks Jason aka rushak passed me and mentioned he came down with something at the end of the week but was going to do VQ regardless. My time to Beeks was 55 minutes, way faster than I had planned. I saw Sarah there and a few others. I wish I had a pic of Sarah, it didn't look like she favors the early morning . Not long after Beeks I saw Keith. We rode together for a little while. The morning was beautiful at this time of the day on the Pain Divide. On the way to Silverado Trail I ran into Gene again. Always good to see you Gene. MG] A little ways further and I ran into Jason again. Jason took a bad fall on the MD and was leaning against a slope regaining his bearings. I stopped briefly to make sure he was OK. He was really banged up and bloody (turns out he did some damage to his collar bone). Fastforward... Aid station 1 and our host Andy aka Rut. On the way to four corners There is a rider in there somewhere. MG] Erik aka Padre on Maple Springs. Chip aka TalksWithFoxes at Four Corners. Erik at Four Corners. Jason at Four Corners, sick and injured yet he was pushing forward. The view looking towards Harding. A couple guys climbing towards Modjeska peak, the guy in Blue (back) was chasing me from here all the way to Horsethief. The view from above Upper Holy Jim was awesome. On the way down Lower Holy Jim I saw Craig aka Koke. Craig was walking his bike? I asked if he was OK and he calmly told me he had broke his arm (Craig had broken his wrist on Upper Holy Jim). I asked if he was alright and he said “I’m fine. GO!” Craig finished the CC after breaking his arm on Upper Holy Jim! Get well soon Craig, your tough as nails! I finally dropped the guy who was chasing me from before Modjeska Peak to Horsetheif when I managed to ride 4 sections before the top:bang:. mtnbikej(?) and Brian serving the best burgers you have ever tasted. Well, while at the top of West Horsetheif anyway, thanks guys! From Horsetheif to the finish I was just way too tired to take any more pics. I caught up to Dave F just beyond Horsetheif and we picked up our pace a bit. He flew down Trabuco as I tried to keep up. At the bottom of Trabuco, at the Horsetheif junction, I saw Deb aka DB250 at the final cut-off, She made the cut-off! I was really stoked for her. “I should have taken a pic. Darn it’s too late now!”…I thought a couple minutes too late.#-o Dave and I continued our rushed pace; it was looking like a sub 7:30 finish was in sight. We pushed all the way to the end…7:26: and something I heard as we passed.:beer: Matt aka Hermit finishing on Rita the SS. The topper for the whole day was seeing Deb’s special award at the end of the day…hopefully someone will cover that and again I didn’t take a pic #-o Just an amazing day on the bike with plenty of pain and suffering, with a much bigger helping of great times to make it all worthwhile. Congratulations to everyone! Thanks again to the warriors and all the volunteers who make this happen. With out your work a great day like this wouldn’t have happened…but I might have gotten a little more sleep.