Posts Tagged ‘LAVS2017’



No map posted for me to note where Westbrook and all other runners are on that lonely road. I do have the stats to report that he has 253 miles behind him and is located past Manchester, note the big thumbs up on the map.


Despite the sleep deprivation and delirium he is “movin’ on up” into 36th of the 62 screwed runners. So close to that finish line, AKA The Rock!


NUMBER 67 – I have to make a correction. For the last update at 132 hours I reported that there were 61 runners left in the screwed category, in fact there were 62. One competitor was grayed out and I missed him in my count. So, then and even now, there are 62 screwed runners with Westbrook holding 38th position. He has 238 miles accomplished and is past Wartrace, Tennessee.

We are in the countdown now, 76 MILES REMAINING! If he continues as he has been with this pace, he will finish one day prior to the cut-off. He can do this! He has the grit and fortitude of a wild animal at times and the determination of no other that I know. Stay with him in prayers and encouragement. If the heat alone does not kill off the runners so many other obstacles out there might. Stay tuned…


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NUMBER 67 – Less than 100 miles remaining for the old man! He called in tonight and let me know that he was having a hamburger. His side/back pain has diminished from all the Gatorade he consumed. He occasionally feels it returning and pounds more Gatorade for the electrolytes, and it subsides yet again. Unfortunately, the hamstring tightness has not left him. His quote for this year’s race, “I am just dragging my leg behind me.”

He said he was in Shelbyville, Tennessee when he called , but the race check-in has him at mile 217 and past Lewisburg. Maybe he is between Lewisburg and Shelbyville. Thus far, the screwed (runners competing without any support) division has 61 runners and Richard is 40th.

He has always finished under the allotted time frame. He is just running to finish now. It will be close, but he can still make it!




NUMBER 67 – 120 hours later, or 5 days into the race wondering what made him crazy enough to do this, Westbrook is still moving forward in the grueling heat on the open road. He still hurts but will not stop. Run through the pain, your body will adapt is what he holds steady to from his many previous experiences. This has rang true, but at times, running through the pain simply can not be done.

Two screwed runners ahead of Richard have switched themselves into the crewed division in need of some support, and letting Westbrook move ahead a bit. He is in 37th place in the solo division. He is past Lewisburg, Tennessee having completed 203 miles. Two other screwed runners, behind Richard also switched to the crewed group and one of them has quit. The unsupported, screwed group of runners has now dwindled to 64 crazy people pounding the pavement. Wish them the best and that they all struggle into the finish at some point in time.

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NUMBER 67 – Still out of 66 competitors in the unsupported division, Westbrook has moved into 37th place with 187 miles. He is at the Bench of Despair, an appropriate place to be I suppose.


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NUMBER 67 – No word from him today as of yet but this morning’s update puts Westbrook past Hampshire at 167 miles. OVER HALFWAY THERE! One more unsupported runner has quit the race leaving a total of 66 in the solo division. RW is 38th of the screwed runners.


Photo from random spot on the road courtesy of the Last Annual Vol State Road Race facebook page. GO RICHARD!

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NUMBER 67 – As of 84 hours into the race, Westbrook has made it to Hohenwald, Tennessee and finished 145 miles. For now, he is in 39th place of the 67 screwed runners.

Richard called home again. He has not felt better at all and said the heat is ungodly! He is taking a break to see how he feels later in order to continue on. The pain in his hamstring is lingering and now his side/back is hurting. He is sure it is an electrolyte depletion so the plan is for rest and Gatorade. He had this happen before in two other ultra races (one being Vol State and the other a race across Georgia 2 years ago) and he was unable to finish, barely being able to walk.

Hopefully the rest helps and not sure how much Gatorade is needed to replenish the electrolytes lost. Wish him luck and keep him in your prayers. Tomorrow’s weather report for his area will be 89 degrees but feels like 92 degrees, 92% humidity and 10% chance of rain.

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NUMBER 67 – One more runner in the solo group dropped out, leaving Westbrook holding steady in 32nd place out of 67 total in the screwed division. He has 134 miles behind him and is past Linden, Tennessee.

Thus far 4 crewed/supported runners have quit the race. At this point more screwed runners have dropped out but usually it is the other way around. Here is an explanation from Lazarus Lake on the Last Annual Vol State Road Race facebook page:

“another example why crewed runners quit more often than screwed.
james allen called for a ride yesterday,
but there was none close,
and he had no choice but to move on while he waited….

he is still out there, and past 100 miles this morning.

ultrarunners everywhere could learn from this.
most of the time the only reason you *dont* finish
is because you *can* quit when you want.”

And also from the facebook page is another photo of people offering support to the members of the race. Wonderful to see how people come together and want to be a part of it all and help.

“We are anxiously waiting for runners at about mile 186 in Culleoka, a few miles past the bench of despair! We hope to meet you and encourage you as you pass thru if we are at home, but if not please help yourself to the goodies and take a rest! Best of luck to all and we are praying for your safety!”

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Darden Pentecostal Church’s tent to aid runner’s – from Last Annual Vol State Road Race facebook page

Every year it seems more and more people come out to support the runner’s of Vol State. There are signs and tents set up at local businesses, in open fields on the roadside, and people’s homes and yards welcoming runner’s to help themselves to fruit, snacks, fluids, a place to rest and possibly some aid if needed. This year, depicted in the above photo, the Darden Pentecostal Church set up to help with a sign reading,

“Welcome Runners

“If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you”

“Good Luck”

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NUMBER 67 – Westbrook has checked-in for 60 hours. He has covered 113 miles and is right at the Tennessee River. Still in the screwed division of 68 runners strong, RW has moved on up into 32nd place tied with three other runners.

No call home from him today so not sure how he is feeling as of now. The weather has been a nightmare I am sure. Maybe he is resting or too busy trucking along through the night.

“An’ here I go again on my own

Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,

Like a hobo I was born to walk alone

An’ I’ve made up my mind

I ain’t wasting no more time….here I go again!”

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NUMBER 67 – At the completion of 48 hours Westbrook is at mile 85 past Parker’s Crossroads. He maintains 48th place with one other, out of the 68 screwed runners. With his last call to home he stated that his hamstring is still painful but he will try to run out the pain, knowing if it gets any worse he may not be able to continue.

From the Last Annual Vol State Road Race facebook page, a post from Lazarus Lake about the race weather, quoted:

” “it was raining so hard that i could not see the road (huge, ice cold drops that hit me like shots from a paintball gun), and the wind was buffeting me around until i wasn’t sure what direction i was going.”

“it was a slow death march in the blazing sun. it was only about 100 degrees, which felt almost chilly after yesterday.
but i was so over the thrill of running in the heat.”

“It was hard to believe that there was no cloud to block out the sun. it was obvious that it had just been pouring down rain here a few minutes ago. water was still running off the pavement in rivers, as clouds of steam swirled up in the bright sunlight. the last thing i needed at this moment, was to run in a sauna.”


for the vol staters, this was reality sinking in.
a lucky few were near shelter when the storms struck.
the others had no choice but to make themselves as small a target as possible,
and soldier on.

running the vol state is like boxing with your hands tied behind your back.
all you can do is absorb punishment.
you cannot dish any out.”