Grab a beer, maybe two, it’s a long one!
Where it all began
In June 2022. I teamed up with Rowan, a local swim runner to take part in the ÖTILLÖ swimrun on Scilly. Rowan and I were the 8th overall but more importantly, one of the top four men’s teams; we had qualified for the World Championships in Sweden in September!
This was a great opportunity. However, the financial implications meant that we were unable to take part. Luckily for us, Tresco kindly came on board and sponsored us so that Scilly could get a local team to the ÖTILLÖ Swimrun World Championships 2022. We trained hard and we raced well. The course consisted of 65km of trail running and 10km of swimming, covering 26 islands; we finished 52nd out of 160 with a time of 9:41:14 – it was an amazing day.
In the month following, I found myself thinking how I could say, thank you to Tresco for giving me this opportunity. On the 27th of September I went for my first run after the swimrun and I realised I hadn’t run all the islands on the Isles of Scilly.
My brain started whirring. I thought maybe I should try and run all the islands on Scilly in a day. Then the idea evolved during the run and by the time I was home I had decided I should put a race on to let others also run all the islands in a day – even better!
I spoke to Tresco Estate who said they would support me to give it a try. Over the next few months, we contacted various people, set up insurance, booked boats and got all the basics together ready to put this race on.
I sent a message out to some of the local runners on Scilly to see if that was the kind of thing they would be interested in… Most started off by saying they weren’t sure, but after a few days, a lot of runners came back to me and said they were keen, and some said they also knew other friends who would be interested in this idea.
One friend mentioned it in passing to someone he runs with occasionally on a Friday. He spends a lot of time in Scilly and wanted to be involved, (he later told his running club and a total of 19 runners ventured over the water from Oxford!) With this encouragement from the local runners and the business support from Tresco, it was time to make this event real.
With everything set up, we went live on the 20th of December. We put messages out on Facebook groups and asked people to spread the word.
As this was the first event of this kind, we thought we would do a ballot which would allow everybody two weeks to hear about this event and we would pick the first 75 people out of a hat to take part in this first event.
In the first three or four days, the emails came flying through. It was so exciting to see other people excited about the event that we had started to organise. Things were going really well and it was an exciting start to the Christmas holidays.
The unexpected turn
On Christmas Eve, I became unexpectedly ill with earache. I was really poorly over Christmas and then was admitted to hospital for three days with a burst eardrum and a severe infection. I couldn’t believe how this had floored me; it was just an earache! But, during this time I found I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t have my eyes open, I just wanted to lay still in a dark room with my eyes covered and holding my head to try to ease the pain in silence. Any movement caused great anxiety. Doctors worked out that as well as my eardrum bursting I was also suffering from labyrinthitis which made me incredibly dizzy and I struggled to walk unaided.
The next few weeks were a curious time; on one hand I had plenty of emails pinging away on my phone with people wanting to take part in the Scilly60 ultramarathon that I was organising when on the other hand the thought of walking to the toilet filled me with dread.
Once back at home, however, I found a few minutes each day where I could sit up long enough to open my laptop with the screen on the dimmest setting and reply to emails from the excited runners.
Luckily, over the next two weeks things improved and after a week or so I was able to come out of the bedroom and sit with the kids for a while. A few days later I was slowly able to get out or more; I went on my first walk to the beach. (about a three minute walk). I had to hold onto my partner’s arm the whole way. I then had to rest for 20 minutes before she supported me walking back. After this ‘expedition’ I then need around four hours sleep!
As time went on I was still very tired, but I was getting my movement back which was a great relief.
After three weeks, since being in hospital, I managed a slow 5K walk and this filled me with immense happiness, knowing that I was able to get the things that I enjoyed back.
At the time I was still deaf in my bad ear and even now my hearing hasn’t returned to normal, but it’s close and I’m happy with that. Over the next few weeks and months, I slowly built up my running until I was back out with my friends running our social Sunday runs as before.
Ups and Downs
On the 6th of January, the ballot closed and I spoke to Tresco Estate. We had 85 people sign up for 75 places. After a quick discussion. We decided to give everybody the chance to take part quickly. Emails came through from many runners, ‘I have signed up, I’ve booked their accommodation and transport and paid for their event.’
It was real; people actually wanted to take part in this race! The excitement grew.
After the first couple of weeks, I started to get emails from runners saying thank you for the opportunity, but they would have to turn it down due to lack of accommodation. As time went on I received more and more of these emails. The elation that I felt when I started this race was slowly starting to become a worry. I now had a lot of people turning down their invitation but with no reserves I have no one to fill these places and I wasn’t sure if I would be able to fill the 75 places.
I had tried to budget this event so that everything would just about break even with 75 runners. However, now in early February with only 50 runners I was a little bit concerned that this event could end up costing me a considerable amount of money.
Luckily, over the next few months, the odd person here and there stumbled across this event and with a month to go we were up to 73 runners, which I was really relieved about.
The final preparations
With three weeks to go, I headed out for my personal Scilly60 run. Due to tides, I couldn’t do the islands in the correct order, and some of the boat journeys took longer than the original event would do. However, it gave me an idea of what the participants would be going through. The biggest lesson I learnt was making sure you had good bag management and that you had a timer on your watch so you knew how long you had left of each stage.
Whilst on this run, I found out that both Anna and Alison had had nightmares about the event in which I featured! Either continuously adding more islands or adding in unexpected bike stages. What have I done!
On Sunday 7th May, just a week to go, it was time for me to start marking up the islands. As I was new to the marking up game, my first island of St Martin’s, I was a little bit tight on the marking tapes. However, by 5K into the route, I realised the tapes will go a long way. From then on I made the tape much longer, making them much more obvious. (I later got a friend to add more tape to the first 5k.)
On Monday, I managed to mark up 6km of St Mary’s in the morning and 6km of St Mary’s in the evening. During the afternoon it rained torrentially and the evening was spent running through rivers that flowed along the coast path lit by my head torch.
On Tuesday. I headed across to St Agnes. The forecast was reasonable. Just as I got to the waiting room I noticed the wind start picking up. Within 10 minutes of starting to mark up there was thunder and lightning and very strong gusts of wind! This made tying the ribbons incredibly difficult, especially with all the paths totally saturated in water. I was glad to finish marking St Agnes and to get home and get dry!
Wednesday, I headed to Bryher. The rain had stopped, but the wind was still quite strong. Three quarters of the way round, I had a phone interview with Radio Cornwall about the event and and later I bumped into my first Scilly60 runner, Grant, on a recce of Bryher.
On Thursday I went to Tresco. I knew this would be a long day as I had to mark up for both stages, so this would be 16km of marking within the timeframe of getting the 9 o’clock boat over and a 2:45, boat back.
A couple of filmmakers had also come along to film marking up and I started to get a bit worried when after two hours I’d only covered 3 km of one route!
I then had to run fast for the next three hours to get all the marking done and I made the boat with just three minutes to spare! I was starting to get her understanding of what the runners may be feeling when they are taking part in this race with the very strict cut offs looming.
On Friday I just had the Garrison on St Mary’s left to mark up. I finished this just after midday and felt a huge relief, knowing that the whole 60km route was all marked up; this was a big weight off my shoulders and I felt much more relaxed heading into what many believed would be the most stressful part of the whole event. It was now time to get everything ready for the 5:30 registration.
By the time I opened registration there had been 10 runners drop out due to various reasons, three of which were from Scilly bringing the local crew down to 12 and total running on the day to 65.
The runners drifted in and excitement grew. By 5:45. The Garden was filled with runners waiting to register. At 7 o’clock, after everyone had registered I was chatting to one of the runners’ partners who seemed a bit gutted but he was unable to take part. When I asked why, he said it was that he didn’t have anybody to look after his dog while they were running. We looked around and found my children giving their dog great big cuddles. I explained that my kids would be going on the spectator boat and they would be happy to look after Zelah the dog if he did want to run. With a loan of a hydration pack and a couple of soft flasks, Tom signed up at 7 o’clock, just 13 hours before the race boat leaves for Tresco.
Race day began with a nice sunny morning and a slight breeze. I headed down the quay at 7:50 only to find the majority of runners already there ready for the 8.15 boats.
We loaded the boat with the equipment, checked the runners onto the boat and set off, heading for Tresco. There was a lot of excitement as people came together, asking those who they were sat next to various questions about the race. When we arrived at New Grimsby, we put our bags in the waiting room, then headed over the hill to the community centre to get ready for the start. The race started on time. The team of volunteers loaded the van with all the equipment and the last few bags then headed back to New Grimsby.
I stayed at the Community Centre to cheer the runners as they passed. It wasn’t long before the first few runners had completed the south side of the island, about 6km, and passed us on their way to the much more technical and tricky terrain of the north end of Tresco.
After the first 10 runners had passed us at the Community Centre I realised this was going to be a fast race. I had to leave without seeing the majority of the runners come past, in order to make sure I got myself to the finish line on time.
Dan Betney crossed the finish line first in just 44:49 taking the stage winner’s blue vest with Tom Carthey just three seconds behind.
Daniela Wright was the first woman across the line in a time of 57:57 with local Anna McCann around seven minutes behind her with a great time of 1:05:07.
All runners crossed the finish line with four minutes to spare before the hooter was to sound.
The Sun was shining. Everybody had made the first cut off. Everybody was smiling. Everything was going great.
We then crossed the channel to Bryher; the shortest of all the islands with 7.9km of coast path, giving a time of exactly one hour before the cut-off.
Before we had finished typing up everybody’s finishing times for stage one for the live leaderboard, Tom came flying across the finish line with a blazing time of 32:30 taking the stage winner’s green vest and overall race leader’s yellow vest. He was followed 40 seconds later by Dan. Local runner Rowan Nightingale came in third with a time of 36:08.
Daniela gained her second women’s stage winner’s vest and also gained the women’s overall race leader’s vest with a time of 41:14. Yvonne Morris and Rachel Shaw battled it out for second place with stage times of 46:27 & 46:28 respectively.
As the rest of the runners crossed the line, many had smiles on their faces, but some were showing slight signs of worry about this race, realising how tight the cut-offs really were and how much harder the terrain really was compared to what people had expected.
Again, all runners completed the course with four minutes to spare. Everyone jumped on board the Seahorse and took a 40 minute ride over to the island of St Martins, whilst taking time to hydrate, eat and talk about the event so far with other runners on the boat.
As race organiser, I was concerned that we were unable to keep up with the online leaderboard. However, everything else seemed to be going to plan. It was becoming evident that this was going to be the hottest day of the year so far after such a cold winter and spring. I was starting to wonder whether this would catch some runners out.
The runners set off on the island of St Martins. As soon as they were out of sight, many of the people on the spectators’ boat headed down onto Par beach for a quick swim.
The runners had one hour and fifteen minutes to complete this 10km island. Many local islanders had their biggest worries about this stage. It contained three of the steepest hills and some running over sandy paths. I wondered if any runners would get caught out by the terrain?
Dan crossed the line in 47:52 seconds taking the St Martin’s red stage vest with Tom, just five seconds behind him, holding on to the overall leader’s vest. Rowan was comfortably in third, with a time of 50:54 but still 5 minutes in front of fourth place. Daniela continued her winning streak finishing with a time of 58:34. She was one of only eight runners to complete the stage in under one hour.
At this point, I start to worry! There is just fifteen minutes left of the stage and I only had eight runners who have finished. Then the penny dropped… I have created a Monster!
As the hot and flustered runners crossed the line with fear in their eyes, everybody realised that this is where the race really begins. Rachel and Yvonne came second and third in the stage with a time of 1:07:37 & 1:07:50.
I blew the horn for two blasts to signify two minutes left before the stage closes. At this time only 37 of the 65 runners had finished the stage.
Over the next two minutes, 8 frantic runners crossed the line before I blew the horn, one long loud blast to signify the end of the stage, leaving 18 runners still on the course.
Everybody looked in shock. This was going to be a very hard day. Everybody got onto the boat and headed to St Mary’s. You could now feel that nervous energy on board the Seahorse, as over a quarter of the runners were left behind.
I tried to reassure the remaining runners that St. Mary’s was a much friendlier island with a lot less hills and wider, less technical paths. However, it was pointed out to me, ‘It is twice as far as any other island!’ I shut up then!
The runners set off again on Stage 4: St Mary’s. This 18km run has a cut off of two hours and fifteen minutes. They head up round the Garrison, then along towards Peninnis Head. With St Mary’s being the most populated of the inhabited islands. There were lots of spectators in various places to give the runners a much needed boost.I headed up to the halfway mark at Pelistry to watch the runners as they crossed the sandbar to Toll’s island.
Again, the front runners were very quick. After being told how much I was appreciated (or not!) at this point, by a couple of runners, I knew I had to head straight back down the quay ready to set up the finish line, rather than watching everybody come through, as I had hoped.
The atmosphere down on St Mary’s Quay was electric. There were a lot more people who had turned up to watch and cheer on the runners. Gaining the orange stage winner vest after just 1:28:46, Tom crossed the finish line. He was absolutely flying and finished nine minutes in front of Dan, in second place, who was followed five minutes later by Rowan in third place with times of 1:37:41 and 1:42:49.
Daniela not only came first woman in this stage again, but also came in joint fourth place overall in the stage with Kevin, really showing her strength and skill in the event with a time of 1:45:08. Anna McCann and Alison Nimmo, both islanders, placed second and third with times of 2:03:27 and 2:03:46.
With just 15 minutes to go until the stage finishes, we only had ten runners across the line. When I started planning this race, I thought maybe two or three people may not make the cut offs. After some longer training runs, I thought we might lose around 10 people during the event. At this point, I now had no idea how many people would actually finish the race.
When the air horn sounded to finish the stage we lost another 17 runners, leaving just 30 runners to start St Agnes. Wow, 4 islands in and we had cut over 50% of the field! Oops!
By the end of this stage, the runners who had been left on St Martin’s, had been back to their holiday accommodation. Showered got changed and headed back down to the quay to both support the fellow runners and join them on the island of St Agnes.
The St Agnes stage of 8.9km started with 30 runners, however, five minutes later, one runner returned walking back knowing it was time to call it a day, leaving 29.
I know at this point I have around 30 mins before the first runners to try and update the leaderboard, Michelle and I decide to head around the corner to the Turks Head pub. It was really busy here. It turned out that all the spectators and the DNF crew were there too, sitting in the sunshine with a pint in hand, happily talking about how their race had unfolded.
It is here where I overhear some of my favourite quotes of the event. “This is the best DNF ever!” “What a great event for your first DNF!”
30 minutes into the race and the chatter gets louder. We have a runner heading across the sandbar to Gugh. My thoughts of updating the leaderboard have quickly come to a standstill as the shouts get louder.
We realise the first three runners have headed left at the end of the sandbar to run clockwise around Gugh. However, the route was planned to run anticlockwise. This means the markers are going to be much harder to follow.
I quickly sent a couple of people over to the sandbar to point the later runners in the right direction. By now we have another three runners heading anticlockwise. Over the next few minutes we watched runners choosing different directions!
This has made the fifth stage really interesting. What will the three front runners do? Will they turn back or will they keep running? How will their mental game play out, will both sets of runners be questioning themselves, wondering if they are going the right way and what would be the outcome? Some of the spectators in the pub are asking me will I cut anyone for running the wrong way?
As nobody has intentionally gone wrong, I have no problem with the runners that have gone the wrong way, this is my mistake not theirs. This is a lesson for me to learn from; to improve the marking up in certain areas, or, as you can’t mark up a tidal sandbar, make sure you have a marshall at the turning point.
In a time of 46:41 Tom crosses the line 1st with Dan in second place with a time off 47:48. Local boy, Rowan, is still holding onto third with a time of 52:23.
Just one second later, Daniela again finishes in fourth place overall and first women’s with a time of 52:24.
The original cut-off is one hour and seven minutes for the 8.9 km stage. However, as the toilets on the quay are closed, I have allowed an extra three minutes so runners can stop off at the campsite to use the toilets, or choose to opt for a wild wee, if needed. The guys at Troytown Campsite have kindly set up a water station for the runners, showing the true community spirit of the islands. As it transpired, most of the runners were too scared to spend precious time having a drink!
With just ten minutes until the stage finishes, again we only have eight runners cross the line. From the finish line we can see silhouettes of runners on the skyline on Gugh. Will they get back in time? A few more cross / stumble across the line.
I blow the hooter twice to let runners on the stage know that there is just two minutes left. In those two minutes just two people crossed the line.
With 30 seconds to go I turn my back on the start line as I have done every time I’ve had to blow the horn. There’s 15 seconds left. I can hear people cheering, but I can also see the time ticking away, knowing that there are runners on their way I’m counting down 10, 9, 8. The cheering is getting louder 54321 I blew the hooter. When the hooter finishes, there is the sound of footsteps in my ears. I turn around to find one of the local girls Rhi Wallace just three seconds short of making the cut off. Friends and family are holding home made banners for her. I feel awful for her! The next stage has no cut offs; This was the last cut off to make it to the end of the event and she missed it by just three seconds… Gutted!
We pack up the boat and everybody gets on, leaving another six runners behind. The talk on the boat heading towards Tresco, is that of relief. There are no time limits on the Tresco stage, just one last run of 6 km.
Just before we start the final stage, the sweeper boat arrives with all the spectators and those who have been cut earlier. They’re all there to cheer on the last 24 runners who are starting stage six; the final stage on Tresco, just 6km to go!.
One runner looks absolutely wrecked, two friends of his, who have earlier been cut from the race, offered to walk with him so that he can finish the race. The rest of the runners at this final starting hooter, head off up the concrete slope every step nearing the end of this gruelling event.
They are able, en route, to follow the path through the world-famous Tresco Abbey Gardens. The tall trees and beautiful plants give some much needed shade to the runners who have been in the roasting sun for the whole day. They carry on up the west coast as they head up back to Cromwell’s Castle. From here they’ve got a very steep climb up to King Charles’ Castle before the gentle decline, heading back down to the Community Centre where they can enjoy the limited edition Scilly60 Pale Ale, made for the event by Ales of Scilly.
The first runner across the line for the final stage was Dan, finishing the course in 29:32 followed seven seconds later by Tom. One minute later with a time of 30:52 seconds by Rowan Nightingale from Tresco.
Again, Daniela, accompanied by partner Kevin, finished the stage in tied fourth with a time of 31:23 with Daniela winning every woman’s stage of the whole event.
Rachel finished the stage as second woman with Alison in third with times of 43:29 and 44:43 respectively.
The second to last runner to cross the line was Mark Berry, in a time of 53 minutes and 16 seconds, and Steve, who walked the last stage, finished in one hour and 27 minutes.
The feeling at the finish line, whether you had completed the run, been cut at an earlier island, volunteered throughout the day or spent the day spectating, seemed to be one of joy.
Everyone appeared to have had a great day out. The difficulty of this event took everyone, myself included, by surprise. However the fact that if you were cut you were still a big part of the day and were welcome to stay with the rest of the runners and visit all of the islands to cheer on friends, I hope, helped to create an inclusive and beautiful event.
The runners, spectators and volunteers then enjoyed the included ‘buffet.’ It should have been described more as a banquet! The food that Tresco provided was incredible, with a wide selection for every diet, a beautiful BBQ and various platters as well as delicious desserts. Many runners described it as the best post event food they had ever had!
Tresco also went the extra mile, there were picnic benches, and blankets for the runners. Two days earlier I asked if we could set up a ‘Social-Ice area’, a bath filled with ice and water for runners to sit around and soak their tired legs and feet. Even with the short notice, two Social-Ice areas were set up!
I can’t thank Tresco enough for helping with this event, it really felt like nothing was too much trouble and everyone felt very looked after.
It was now time for the awards ceremony. The six top runners would be walking away with one of the beautiful hand made glass trophies made by Oriel Hicks. (Speaking with Tom later, it was seeing this trophy at the registration that really made him want to try hard, however, as I only had two on display there he thought he had to win to gain a trophy; he was surprised when he saw the six on the table!)
The overall results saw Tom on top with a combined time of 4:50:25 after signing up just 24 hours before, followed by Dan the new locum doctor on Scilly with a time of 5:00:52 with third place going to Tresco beef farmer and my previous swimrun partner, Rowan, with a combined time of 5:21:20. He always was a better runner than me!
First woman, and fourth overall, was Daniela (tied fourth place with partner Kevin), participating in her first ultra marathon, over an hour quicker than her nearest competitor with a time of 5:46:40. Rachel from the Oxford crew was second with a time of 6:51:56. Third place went to local paramedic, Anna, beating her partner, Alison, to gain a trophy by just 35 seconds!
It was also great to see one of our Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust Rangers, Darren, complete the race. Darren with the rest of his team, helped to cut many of the coast paths back over the previous four weeks and not only completed the challenge having only ever completed one half marathon over ten years ago, but also raised nearly £3000 for the Trust to help keep our beautiful islands an officially recognised ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.’ If you wish to boost this amount, you can do so here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/darren-hart12 One of my objectives for this race was to donate £500 to the Trust, and I was proud to be able to do this on the day.
After the awards, everyone had the chance to pick up their 2023 Scilly60 T-shirts and some artwork by my wife, Erica. The artwork had proved trickier than anticipated and Erica was still screen printing the posters the day before the event! At 10pm on Friday, Erica then signed and hand stamped every individual print whilst I put her hand made prints (and some back up prints!) and stickers into 80 envelopes, finishing just before 1am on the morning of the race!
I am delighted that many people have spoken highly of the event, likening it more to a running festival; the fact that the latest you could arrive on the islands was Friday and the earliest you could leave was Monday really helped to create this feeling. Having all the runners sit together on the boat over seven different journeys and having time to talk about their excitement, anxiety, race plans, fueling, time worries, and general feeling of the day really helped to build a sense of community, whether you were chasing the podium or fighting the hooter. Lots of the runners camped together on St Mary’s and many met up for a beer on the Sunday afternoon. It turns out, this isn’t ‘just a run.’
Personally, it was amazing to see this idea that had come to me just eight months earlier come to fruition with an outcome better than anything I could have imagined. Like everything in life, there is always room for improvement. A few of these being: the timing system (which I am working on), a dedicated finish line photographer and better signing on major junctions or turns, so people don’t run the wrong way around Gugh!
When I started this I just wanted a race that I would want to participate in. I never expected such positive feedback in the days afterwards, not just from runners, but spectators, those who got cut, the general Scilly community and people who followed online. This race was so much harder than I anticipated and with an attrition rate of 65% do I call the event a success? For me, I don’t look at results, DNF’s or times. I like to look at faces and listen to stories. So for me, yes this was a huge success!
Over the last couple of weeks, I have had many emails and messages from new runners wanting to participate next year, as well as lots of this year’s participants looking forward to coming back. There are so many in fact, that I am trying to work out ways to give more people access to this event. More information on this will be out as soon as I can make everything work!
I still need to find some time to sit down and work out how to make the tides work to run the event again. The 2024 tides are proving a real challenge, but I am close!
I have learnt a lot over the last eight months. I have some things to change and a couple of other ideas which I hope will build on the success of this event. However, if all goes to plan, the majority of this event will remain untouched – I think I better not prod the monster! I am hoping I can get next year’s date out during early June.
As with all projects, nothing happens without a team.
Thanks to everybody on Tresco Island for believing in this event and helping me make it happen right from the start.
Thanks to Tom Matthews for our website and sorting all our IT needs.
Thank you Erica, without you we wouldn’t have the incredible logo that we all love. She also designed the finish line flags, the stage winner vests and obviously the artwork for all participants to treasure. She also had to put up with many months of endless Scilly60 talk!
Thanks to my mother-in-law, Oriel Hicks for the amazing trophies.
Thanks to my father-in-law, Steve Hicks for giving up his day to drive the spectator/sweeper boat.
Thanks to Gareth from Above & Below Imagery for the amazing video that can be found on youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVvxo3dLn2U
Cheers to Jennie from Ales of Scilly for the Scilly60 Pale Ale..
Thanks to Rachel for making everything at the community centre work so smoothly. Thanks to the Tresco Catering Team – Just WOW!
Thanks to event Medic Henry, again giving up his entire day to help this event happen.
Thanks to the many volunteers on the day, whether it be timing, filming or sweeping and thank you for your enthusiasm throughout the long day.
Thanks to St Mary’s Boatmen’s Association and Endeavour Rib Service for all the boat trips to make this event possible.
Thanks to the spectators – your continuous applause and enthusiasm for everyone who crossed every finish line was immense!
The biggest thank you is to all 75 that signed up. Whether you made it to the start line or not, whether you made it to the finish line or not. Without runners like you believing in this event, it couldn’t happen. To give your money, when times are hard, to an event, that is in its infancy with an organiser with little experience. To commit your time and make the effort to get to Scilly and find accommodation!
Without you believing in this event, it wouldn’t have happened. To keep the atmosphere buzzing even after you have been cut is incredible.
I hope everyone is proud of their run, no matter how many stages they completed. It is now proven to be a very hard event; you may have been in the first DNF crew or the first finishers, but you were here taking the first steps in this event’s journey with me, and that means a lot.
I hope the sound of a hooter doesn’t give you nightmares!
Thanks for believing in me!