Three years after its last performance, Reno Tahoe Odyssey is back in all its glory on Friday and Saturday, full of clever team names and crazy costumes, and a dominant team effort.
The Prominence Health team of 11 set a course record by completing the 178-mile relay in 16 hours, 40 minutes, 35 seconds (5:37) on a track that starts at Ring’s Wingfield Park, winds around Lake Tahoe and ends in Idlewild Park.
Prominence Health broke the record it set the last time the RTO was held in 2019 (16: 54.10). Team member Casey Campbell also set a stage 4 record, beating the previous best time in this section west of Verdi by 20 seconds.
The Eclipse team of 12 women won the Open Women’s Division, finishing in 20: 46.03.
And the men’s team SRTree Ultra (six runners) set a record in this division with 19: 44.52.
ICYMI:After keeping the RTO alive for itself, Costello of Renault stepped up for a full comeback
The captain of the Prominence Health team is Dominique Enriquez, the only member of the team who lives in Renault. He said about half of this team is different from the team leading the RTO in 2019, but is still just as serious about the venture. In addition to Henriquez and Campbell, team members include Raymond Fong, JJ Santana, Reid Breuer, Colin Corrigan, Rob McLaughlan, Eric Kleib, Alan Careno, Bo Armstrong and Derek Wehant.
Campbell said his goal is to try to set a record in stage 4.
“I love mountain running. It’s a challenge I just can’t resist, to really see what my body is capable of, to do the things that others are afraid of. There is something instinctive, so I could not back down, “he said. “I wouldn’t have gotten this chance or I could have won it without the great team and the noise from my friends and teammates.”
Henriques, 35, said the conditions were almost perfect – it was not too hot during the day, the night did not get too cold around Lake Tahoe and the wind only picked up later on Saturday.
The team starts at 4pm on Friday in Wingfield.
Wreck It & Ralph, Legs Miserable:Some of the funniest names for the 2022 Reno Tahoe Odyssey team
“If that was the case every year, I would agree with that,” Enriquez said of the conditions.
He said Prominence runners had avoided injuries and illnesses and stayed on course, a mistake that slowed them slightly in 2019.
Several teams reported sightings of bears, but Enriquez said the most unusual part of their run was a large tree that had apparently just fallen on the other side of the road near the Stampede Reservoir.
“I think there were some beetles who understood us,” Enriquez said, laughing.
He said the team wants to win Corrigan, who was unable to play with the team in 2019 due to injury.
He said that a huge part of the attractiveness of RRO is the dynamics of the team, as running is usually an individual sport.
“You support your teammates and this is not one thing you do, but the team,” said Enriquez. And it’s a cool landscape. That’s a really great thing about where you’re going. “
Eclipse captain Anna Costello said her team also avoided injuries, illness and bears.
Runners wear headlights and reflective vests when running around Tahoe at night.
She said it was quiet around the lake and runners were trying not to make much noise.
Has she seen bears?
“I mean, I’m breathing hard, so maybe they’re just like ‘No,’ do you understand?” She said, smiling.
Race director Eric Lerud said a team reported seeing a mother bear and her cubs on leg 13, and Lerud said a bear had crossed his path into South Lake Tahoe.
He was tired on Saturday afternoon, but delighted with the return of the RTO.
“Because we didn’t do it for three years, we were as organized as we could be,” Lerud said. “The runners were enthusiastic to do it.”
The full results can be found here.
Jim Krajewski covers high school and youth sports for the Reno Gazette Journal. Follow him on Twitter @RGJPreps. Support his work by subscribing to RGJ.com.