The Reebok Ragnar Reach The Beach (RTB) Relay is one of the oldest and longest running relay races in the United States. The event begins at the Bretton Woods Ski area with the course taking teams through the White Mountains of New Hampshire, past fields, lakes, mountain top vistas, ultimately finishing along the Atlantic coastline at Hampton Beach State Park – NH. For the last six years, Dublin has sent mixed student/faculty teams to run the race. We believe that we are always the youngest team in the race and the only high school to compete. This year, as in most years, Dublin sent two 12 member, four van teams from the peaks to the sea.
With a total distance of 204 miles, the race takes over a day to complete. Each runner runs an average of 17 miles. For most of our students, their first RTB is also their first experience running anywhere near this kind of distance. In the words of new Dublin student Harrison Atlas (Houston TX) who ran with two heel blisters that he got in a cross country race on the prior Wednesday, “Running my legs was amazing. From running my eight miler at night, enjoying the peace and calm, to the intensity of my two shorter legs in which I really pushed my speed, I was always having a blast. After each leg I felt very accomplished, and very tired. Watching my teammates… was really enjoyable and made me feel like I was further integrating into the Dublin community.”
Erika Rogers’ (Director of Development and first time participant) reaction was similar, "For me, Reach the Beach was an example of doing what we ask Dublin students to do everyday - push yourself beyond your comfort zone - dare to become someone you did not know you could be. Teachers, this is harder than we think, but so worth it. "
The physical challenge is obvious, but what may be less so, is the logistical and basic challenges of supporting runners as they cycle in and out of the race. A 12 member team is also a two van movable feast that must always be racing ahead of the current runner - rehydrating, feeding and recharging spent runners as they await their next leg. Each van becomes a mini community of sustenance, laughter, exhaustion and cheerleading.
“Sharing a van for that crazy amount of time that we did was more fun than I expected. I feel like I quickly forged friendships with everyone I rode with. All of us ran our guts out for our team, celebrated in each other's successes, and endured the miseries of intense soreness and extreme exhaustion together. It seemed like, after we woke up at 3 AM for Jared's leg, at least one person was completely passed out at any given moment. We all began to function worse in general, speaking incoherently and making our van a pigsty, and it made for a few good laughs.” Harrison Atlas.
Academic Dean Sarah Doenmez “I love the silliness and delirium of not sleeping and then pushing your limits. Real elements of character come through in those moments. Mark is fierce. GH is insane. Theresa is stubborn. Lilly never stops laughing. Lindsey likes order. I bet we are the only team in which books were cracked at 3 AM. Theresa read her English assignment and Lilly worked on Chemistry....just saying.”
Holly Macy, the Dublin School Director of College Counseling and the person who is most responsible for our participation, “a highlight of the year for those of us who have returned to drive/run. Seeing the camaraderie and spirit among the students is a big part of the reward. Seeing students signup who have never thought of themselves as an athlete is also a big part of the reward. It is a monumental task to get 24 people in four vehicles to be geared up appropriately for the event. Each year a couple of days before we go I question WHY I volunteer for this, but as soon as we depart campus in the early hours of Friday morning, these thoughts disappear. I love the personal challenge of the event of course, but even more, I love to see people work up to the challenge who wouldn't otherwise train without a common mission.”
Congratulations to our 2016 Team Members!
Faculty and Friends
Will Cornell (husband of Emily Cornell, Director of Learning Skills)
Lindsey Masterson (Assistant Nordic Ski Coach)
Susie Vogel (Board Member and Parent ’20)
Harrison Atlas , Houston TX
Theresa Barth , Alexandria VA
Lilly Bates , Dublin NH
Mark Franklin , Keene NH
Arthur Garcia , Union City NJ
Grace Harrington , Sharon NH
Zoe Hewitt , Keene NH
Riley Hodson , Guilford CT
Emil Hristache , Peterborough NH
Bette Imhoff , Dublin NH
Faith Lewis , Bennington NH
Jared Lewis , Bennington NH
Sita Moses , Dublin NH
Kyle Mincey , Newark NJ
GH Werowinski , Acton MA
Emma Williams , Concord NH