Sam Barlow High School | Gresham, OR
Legend has it that Oregon pioneer Sam Barlow was sentenced to one year of demanding physical labor in the year 1827 as punishment for his conviction of manslaughter. A quick Google finds that an ax wielding Mr. Barlow heroically rose to the occasion and was merely defending his family. Townspeople, including but not limited to the victim's own brother pleaded the judge to pardon Mr. Barlow's case. And so it was within six months. Perhaps this is why the name "Battle" at Barlow may have originated and still sticks. It's probably because its an absolute OBRA classic, but let's just say it's historic regardless.
I mostly just wandered from spot to spot by the run-up. Impossibly hard in a race, lifting already wooden legs and expecting them to hike quickly, dainty and unexpectedly up those Oregon trail-road ties. To then have to remount uphill and climb more...WOOF. From dude in the Trek kit to you sweet, smaller-than-each-step kiddie racers, cross races like today really are not easy for anyone. It's totally inspiring watching seven or eight year olds bash themselves up some stupidly steep shit carrying bikes bigger than they are and not quitting. It's also got me thinking how hard the A's are gonna be. The crowd at the run up was also second to none: funny, mostly supportive, a teeny bit cutting and totally loud.
Another stellar weekend of summer cross. Thanks to the Sam Barlow cross country team and anyone else who helped put on such an amazing race.