We caught up with Lauren & Liz after their epic Mt. Taylor WIN to get their take on the race! Here is what they had to say! Thank you ladies for sharing your insight and congratulations on an incredible race!
Dukes Quad Squad
What is this race all about?
LQ: The Mount Taylor Quadrathalon starts in Grants, NM, peaks at the top of Mt. Taylor, and finishes back in Grants, NM. It consists of: a 13 mile bike (1800+ ft elevation), 5 mile run (1200 ft elevation), 2 mile ski (1200 ft elevation) and 1 mile snowshoe (600 ft elevation) to the summit of Mt. Taylor (elevation 11,306) The events are then reversed until you’re back in town. You can do the race solo, as a pair, or as a team of four. The Dukes Quad Squad was a pair with Lauren doing the biking and running and me doing the skiing and snowshoeing.
What was the high point/low point of the race?
LQ: Highs were the skis working great on the uphill and having a blast on the downhill to come in hot and tag Lauren. Low Point: never saw the pickle juice aid stations.
LT: Highs were hanging with the dudes on the bike as long as I could and then passing them on the run. One guy told me "You reeled me in like a fish!" what a great compliment! Lows were the last 2 days because my legs are so sore! Holy Moly! It is February and my body was not ready for that!
Before the race, you guys didn’t know each other super well; what fun fact about each other did you learn?
LQ: I already knew Lauren Thompson was a badass who likes to win. She confirmed that. I also learned that she knows a ton about bikes, isn’t picky about food, likes watching Dateline, and her mom makes great apricot jam.
LT: Liz is a total badass on skis. Dudes were looking for her after the race to shake her had because she passed them so effortlessly on skate ski's. She is also one of the most friendly and outgoing people I have ever met. I think she talked to every person there as well as got their phone numbers.
Did you guys have a race day plan?
LQ: Don’t disappoint Lauren. Pass dudes on the ski portions. Keep breathing at 11,000 feet.
LT: Don't disappoint Liz! I was thinking about my teammate the whole time and wanted to get to her as fast as I could. Having a teammate really helps keep your head in the game during a race.
Equipment insights? Other comments?
LQ: Skate skis with climbing skins were great for me! The skins were made from leftover edge scraps from backcountry ski climbing skins. Lauren helped me attach them at the tip and tail with a plastic band and duct tape. Making a tape tab to help remove the duct tape prior to the downhill portion was key! Since I was in Nordic-ski boots, I just kept the boots on at the ski-snowshoe transition and wore my ski boots while snowshoeing. Bring a chair and yoga mat for the run- ski transition. I waited about 3.5 hours after being dropped off by the shuttle to start the ski leg and Lauren had to wait 1.5 hours between her run up and run down. The volunteers were awesome, and so were all the folks doing the race! Well organized, lots of snacks, amazing weather, and a free beer at the end J
LT: I was also wavering back and forth about what equipment to bring. I ended up riding a road bike instead of tt bike which was the right choice especially with how windy it was on the way downhill. This is the most fun I have ever had at a post race party. There was beer and a food truck as well as music and a really great group of people. Would do again.
Hydration? Fueling? What did you gals use?
LQ: This was a long day in the sun at high altitude for both Lauren and I. Luckily the Dukes AND the race are sponsored by Honey Stinger, and we happily ate protein bars and grapefruit gummy chews. I drank Nuun from about 8:30 - 10:30 before starting my legs and struggled less with altitude than I expected. Yay for electrolytes!