It's been crazy here at the shop and I haven't had time to write anything about the CTR until now.  Quick updates (no photos, no time!):

-Durango peeps Aaron Boatman and Garrett Alexander appear to be riding together quite a bit, up on Sargents Mesa area at the moment.

-Durangoan Michael Ackerman dropped out partway through the high segments after Silverton (riding reverse) - hopefully we'll know why soon.

-The field is small this year, so we're seeing second, third, fourth place riders at paces that would normally mean somewhere around tenth - not slow, but not ridiculous.  Second place is basically a full day behind the leader, which is nuts considering the last few years have seen actual races to the finish between racers...

-Neil Beltchenko, though, is in a completely different race, from outside appearances - not against other riders, but against the record.  He hit the beginning of the last 75 miles of singletrack into Durango around 6pm, and it will be a nailbiter of a finish.  If he can make Durango by 6am, he's done the slightly longer route - introduced in 2013 - in sub-4 days, which is pretty amazing.  But it appears he may not have slept since Marshall Pass, so the question here is: Can he escape the sleep monster for the ~12 hour ride into town?  I suppose we'll find out - I can't help but remember Ethan Passant's ride in 2012, going super fast, no sleep since Marshall, only to have no choice but to pass out at Taylor Lake, a scant 23 miles from Durango.  This cost him first, and second, place, along with the record.

Hoping for a crazy ride from Neil tonight - may have to make it to the trailhead for the finish!  Signing off for now...