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Gaelforce West 21/8/10

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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 201 ✭✭ kerinsp


    5:49 for me. Bit slower than last years time. I felt good out there today. Such a cool race.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 5 ✭✭✭ cornishpasty


    Well I am was a first timer and am signing up for next year. What an event!

    Obviously I don't know the "old" sections, but I thought the new off road cycle section was great; it really mixed things up a bit and was a good challenge. I thought the toughest section of cycling was the off road after Croagh Patrick and was the only place I stepped off the bike and walked. Someone said to me if you've got this far safely why risk it all now and I was reassured to see everyone else step off the bike.

    I didn't appreciate how much Croagh Patrick would take out of me though. I thought it was going to spit me out and say "come back when you're ready for me, little boy! I had done plenty of bog running and on/off road cycling but the hills in East Clare were no preparation for Croagh Patrick.

    There were a few wake up calls though and I hope the emergency situations I saw all turned out OK. Hat's off to the emergency services who were on the ball, but I really didn't like seeing a person over the crash barries on the downhill after the big climb (on road cycle section) and in the river having missed the left turn of the bridge at the foot of the hill. I would have really expected to see some caution signs or something before that bridge/bend because, had someone not warned me of it before the race, I could easily imagine over-shooting the bend and doing the same. I hope the few casualties I saw are all right! Other than that, I thought the event was well managed.

    So a few of my lessons for next year:

    · Shoes; I really lost time changing my shoes three times between running and cycling. Worse still, after Croagh Patrick, bending down to change the shoes really gave a chance for every muscle in my legs to spasm with cramp like no tomorrow. At that stage I ripped open a satchet of diaorolyte and washed it down with water which turned out to be a bit of a miracle cure but next year it has to be toe cages to save time and avoid changing shoes and cramp.
    · Croagh Patrick; Nothing prepares you for CP like training on CP, wow I was unprepared.
    · Bike; my trusted cyclocross was a great tool, with ability to keep up with the roadies on the sealed roads and confidence to stay on the bike for (most) of the off-road sections.
    · Peanut butter bagels are impossible to eat when your heart rate is 170bpm and you need to breath. As dry as a camels backside too.
    All in all, I was aiming for last years average competitors time of 6.5 hours but obviously I had no appreciation of the course. I was really pleased to do it in 5:19. I don't know whether the new sections add time or reduce it from last year, but I'm happy with the time.


    Anyone that saw an eejit with two teddies on his ruck sack, that was me. They were mascots given to me by my kids to keep me going. Did it help? I think it did!

    Great tips over the last few months on this site. Thanks to all. Well done to all competitors too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,440 ✭✭✭ Slogger Jogger


    If practise on CP is what you want there is usualy an annual race up and down it from the Murrisk side organised by IMRA. Unsurprisingly many of the IMRA guys do well traditionally in the Gaelforce as nothing beats practise.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Regional Midwest Moderators, Regional West Moderators Posts: 16,697 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yop




  • Registered Users Posts: 2,093 ✭✭✭ Peterx


    acurno wrote: »
    Right,
    I appreciate this is an adventure race but considering 90% of the people were on racers there should be no or very little offroad sections to navigate. I passed plenty of people with punctures and a few whose wheels had buckled. And on the offroad after Croagh Patrick some girl came off heavy and had to be airlifted to hospital while we were passing. I think adventure races should either be all onroad or all offroad. If Gaelforce is serious about becoming one of the premier adventure races in Europe and wants to attract the very best competitors it needs to sort this out. They should seriously look into paving those roads, it can hardly cost that much. 5, 10. 15k? Would be totally worth it.

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/45593842

    Ahh jaysus I wrote an epic sweeping post and it disappeared as I submited it saying I wasn't logged in? doh..
    Great race, well organised by Mona, Ciara, Siobhan and all at Killary who obviously put a lot of work in and listened to feedback from last year.
    Paving the offroad sections? :D
    I'll have to get a cup of tea before re-writing my post. Suffice to say hats off to Padraig Marrey, I raced as hard as I could and paced it very well and really thought I was going to hold on after reaching the summit of Croagh Patrick in first place, I did give it everything going up and Padraig crucially came down quicker and was within striking distance to overtake on the last cycle although he was briefly held up by 6 horsies on the skelp. More later with action packed detail and boring blow by blow accounts of every stage:)


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1 peter500


    heres a link to some albums of photos taken near leenane, on croagh patrick and at the finish. about 2000 photos in total. more to come as well

    http://picasaweb.google.com/105607389607058020528


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Regional Midwest Moderators, Regional West Moderators Posts: 16,697 Mod ✭✭✭✭ yop


    Peterx wrote: »
    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/45593842

    Ahh jaysus I wrote an epic sweeping post and it disappeared as I submited it saying I wasn't logged in? doh..
    Great race, well organised by Mona, Ciara, Siobhan and all at Killary who obviously put a lot of work in and listened to feedback from last year.
    Paving the offroad sections? :D
    I'll have to get a cup of tea before re-writing my post. Suffice to say hats off to Padraig Marrey, I raced as hard as I could and paced it very well and really thought I was going to hold on after reaching the summit of Croagh Patrick in first place, I did give it everything going up and Padraig crucially came down quicker and was within striking distance to overtake on the last cycle although he was briefly held up by 6 horsies on the skelp. More later with action packed detail and boring blow by blow accounts of every stage:)

    Well done Peter, you guys are machines!!!

    Shame there wasn't a bigger turn out at the end, you lads and girls deserve a big crowd for your massive efforts.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 228 ✭✭ r0nanf


    I only experienced the race as a spectator on CP due to knee injury - met friends halfway up to cheer on and hand out fig rolls, deep heat etc and walked my missus to the top and back (knee recovery is definitely set back a week now!). Saw two separate airlifts off the mountain plus countless falls, slips, trips etc. Was raining heavily when we were going up and the amount of competitors coupled with penance seeking lunatics made it very dangerous. It was total carnage and a lot of people really struggling mentally.

    Fair play to all the heroes on their first GFW who dig deep and grind it out whatever the finishing time


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,093 ✭✭✭ Peterx


    yop wrote: »
    Well done Peter, you guys are machines!!!

    Shame there wasn't a bigger turn out at the end, you lads and girls deserve a big crowd for your massive efforts.

    Easily done, send the elites in the last wave, give them a flouresent yellow race bib so they can see each other and set them off to cause carnage chasing each other through the other waves:D
    Logistical issue at the kayaks could be sorted by allowing elites bring their own kayaks and also making their kayak course longer - two or three big zig-zags as they cross the fiord to make something of the kayak section, it's very short in terms of the length of the race.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,082 ✭✭✭ 2 Wheels Good


    So, it's the morning after, body feeling strangely fine
    Finished in 5'38" so big improvement on last year!
    Was apprehensive as injuries had restricted me to 2 runs since june so not the best preparation and getting up at 4.30am isn't my usual thing but felt good heading down to the start.
    Run went fine, no cramps on the kayak this year, and unlike a few by the sounds of it didn't end up in the water (did I hear a kayak sank?)
    Bike, bone of contention building up was great, mtb on slicks was a good choice up the valley, got a good rhythm on the climb (except for cramp) and the downhill was fun
    The new offroad section was horrible but blame for that goes on me, fitness not what it could be, sorely tempted to keep going past CP and on to home but didn't. Low gears were more useful than i thought on all the cycle so not sure what i'd do if there is a next year, cyclo cross bikes seemed to be the best option, saw a couple of sweet machines along the way. 2nd offroad seemed worse than last year, but was able to go flat out down the far side and passed 10/15 people, and finished quicker than last year.
    CP was grand, all credit to the new shoes, INOV8 Rocklites, solid every step of the way, cannot fault them at all! Would highly recommend them.
    Did not like the finish, last straight with the wind was a big deflator and the run was that bit too far, brain had finished first time passing the finish line!
    Enjoyable day overall, hope the few injuries along the way weren't too serious and congrats to all!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 829 Wonkagirl


    6.01 for me. Gutted to not break below 6 hrs, and tortured myself about the various times i couldve picked up the 61 seconds! :(

    Now, to the cycle route. NITEMARE. there wasnt one single bit of it that i enjoyed. it was pure torture, and i hate to say it but i dont think i'll do it next yr if the route remains the same. Plus, was it just me, or has the skelp gotten a helluva lot worse since last yr?

    I LOVED the change to the run though- beautiful scenery along the drop there. Reg also inifinitly better, as was that overall organisation.

    Eh, one last thing- that fooken ''500m'' dash at the end??? uncalled for!! and the thinking you were finished cycling through, only to cycle on and get confused as to whether you had actually finished? my legs were like lead at that stage, i'd say the 500m dash took me about 5 mins, defo pushed me over the 6 hour mark , was RAGGING!

    feet are in bits today. blisters everywhere. binned my horrible trail shoes, met a girl who had a fab pair of INNOV8s, gonna try and get a pair, anyone know where they're stocked in dublin? she got hers in the edge in cork. where did you get yours pat?

    well done to the 5hour-ers- jealous!

    Massive congrats to peter, padraig, paul, eoin, thomas etc on a truly spectacular race.. i see you added 10 mins to your time last yr peter- due to the new bits added- probably was about 20 for the joe soaps id say?

    out of interest, do the elite top few chat to each other as youre going around>? i really enjoyed the comraderie and chat as we went around.. the people with iPods miss out on that imo, altho there were times during the cycle i wouldve loved a few tunes.. opinions on that- ipod or no ipod?


  • Registered Users Posts: 98 ✭✭✭ Vitamin C


    Fair play to everyone on Saturday folks. That was my first event like this and can't believe how good the atmosphere and camaraderie was throughout the event, and the organisation was top notch.

    Thanks a million for all the amazing advice given on this thread, all the little tips made a huge difference for me on the day, would have been in bad shape without a lot of them so big thanks to all of yis.

    I managed to get in under the six hours so considering five months ago I couldn't run 100 yards I'm absolutely delighted, and hooked. Can't wait for the next event.

    As for the course change I can't compare it to previous years but I thought it was great, the off road parts were tricky but made for more technical cycling, especially that last bit, it was great!

    It was grueling, testing, torturous, but I loved every minute of it, in retrospect of course.

    Cheers lads and thanks again for the advice!

    Ps. A cyclocross bike is definitely the best bike for that course in my opinion. No question.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,139 Wreck


    Just back home from Westport, have to say I've very mixed feelings on yesterday.

    First off my time was an abysmal 8.35 or so, which is very far off the goal I had of 6 hours. There were a number of reasons for this, but it's still disappointing to finish so far down. On the other hand, I am delighted to have finished it at all, as this time 2 months ago there is no way I could have done it.

    I loved the all runs, especially the final dash! I thought it was only 100 metres and ended up sprinting the full thing - I'd say the people I passed thought I was insane. I also really enjoyed going up Croagh Patrick, coming down was a little bit trickier but still good. I did think that it was a little bit unsafe to have so many people on the mountain at one time, and there were quite a few people who didn't care how their descent effected others. The kayak was silly, I did it with a girl, neither of us have any kayaking experience, and we did it in less than 15 minutes. Just seems totally pointless compared to the scale of the rest of the race.

    Everything hinged on the cycling for me. I got two punctures, the first when I hit a pothole took me about 25 minutes to repair as my wheel become jammed. The second cost me about 15 minutes, and I've no idea how it happened. I thought some of the roads, even on the first section, were ridiculously poor for cycling on. After my second puncture I had to take it really easy on the bike as I had no more spare tubes, and I ended up carrying my bike at least 10k over the course of the day. I saw plenty of other people with punctures and worse, and stopped to help two people who were having trouble changing tubes. The cycling was by far the biggest negative of the whole weekend for me.

    The atmosphere all weekend was brilliant, everyone was so enthusiastic and supportive. It was great seeing people out clapping and cheering in their gardens and along the side of the road. All the race marshals were great as well, and there was a great sense of camaraderie among the competitors.

    When thinking about doing it again next year, the biggest thing holding me back would be the state of some of the cycle route. I am glad I did it this year though, and I feel it has given me great experience for the Achill Roar next month which has always been the goal.

    Well done to the winners, those times are amazing to me. And congratulations to everyone who took part too.

    Also a big thank-you to Arjan, Michelle and Davide for the lift back to Dublin, was really cool.


  • Registered Users Posts: 59 ✭✭✭ smithwicks


    Really enjoyed catching up with that Golden Labrador on the second wave! He did well , 1hr 12 for the first run.

    Kudos to the guy who cycled on with a flat wheel for the last 2kms into Westport. He passed me out on the line Karma for giggling i guess...


  • Registered Users Posts: 829 Wonkagirl


    Wreck wrote: »
    When thinking about doing it again next year, the biggest thing holding me back would be the state of some of the cycle route. I am glad I did it this year though, and I feel it has given me great experience for the Achill Roar next month which has always been the goal.

    Me too. I really t hink the cycle route will turn me off taking part again. It was too stressful, and as someone else here said, it's impossible to even train for it.

    As for the achill roar- are you doing the sports or expert- if the former, then it'll be a walk in the PARK.. i'm really looking fwd to it, it was a super event last yr- smooth roads all throughout you'll be glad to hear!

    well done for finishing, jesus after 2 flat tyres i think i'd've lost the will to live if i was you.. respect for persevering!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,064 ✭✭✭ GoHardOrGoHome


    yop wrote: »

    Ha! That's me on the front of the Gaelforce 2010 Album 1!

    Notice the tongue out to aid concentration! :D


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,818 nerraw1111


    People complaining that an adventure race is too tough? It's supposed to be, that's what makes the race. The pain, the never agains, the why am i doing this.

    Why do you want it easier? Try a triathlon I'd you want paved roads.

    The cycle wasn't that technical. You don't need to train for that section. If it was paved, ppl wouldve still walk it. The problem wasn't the surface, it was that ppl were shattered. If you couldn't cycle it, it's because you were too tired. Last year I walked huge parts of the cycle.

    The skelp was pretty much same as last year.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,139 Wreck


    Wonkagirl wrote: »
    Me too. I really t hink the cycle route will turn me off taking part again. It was too stressful, and as someone else here said, it's impossible to even train for it.

    As for the achill roar- are you doing the sports or expert- if the former, then it'll be a walk in the PARK.. i'm really looking fwd to it, it was a super event last yr- smooth roads all throughout you'll be glad to hear!

    well done for finishing, jesus after 2 flat tyres i think i'd've lost the will to live if i was you.. respect for persevering!

    Doing the sports in Achill, feel like I could sprint the whole thing after yesterday. I honestly can't wait for it, the excitement is building already. And hearing the roads will be smooth is just the icing on the cake.

    There was no way I wasn't going to finish yesterday, even if I had to ditch the bike I would have made it eventually!


  • Registered Users Posts: 300 ✭✭ locha


    Hi Folks, Just a quick one to see if anyone say the teenager take a tumble on the reek yesterday... one of the worst accidents I have ever seen... he looked to be in a really bad way. Took some of the gloss out of the event, seeing that but all in all a really great day.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,818 nerraw1111




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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,618 Mr Freeze


    Ha! That's me on the front of the Gaelforce 2010 Album 1!

    Legendary Picture!
    nerraw1111 wrote: »
    People complaining that an adventure race is too tough? It's supposed to be, that's what makes the race. The pain, the never agains, the why am i doing this.

    Why do you want it easier? Try a triathlon I'd you want paved roads.

    The cycle wasn't that technical. You don't need to train for that section. If it was paved, ppl wouldve still walk it. The problem wasn't the surface, it was that ppl were shattered. If you couldn't cycle it, it's because you were too tired. Last year I walked huge parts of the cycle.

    The skelp was pretty much same as last year.

    As for the cycle route, the organisers had no choice to go that route, people were blocking the ambulances last year on the other road. Some competitors were more interested in their own progress than letting an ambulance past them...as much as I hate the new route too, mainly because of puncture potential, I don't think they had any choice but to use it.

    Scelp on the other hand is getting dangerous, I think there was quite a few falls on it yesterday, one very serious one, I wouldn't be surprised if they come under pressure to remove that section for next year.

    Was pleasantly surprised with my performance yesterday, managed 5.17, big improvement over 6.09 last year.

    Hats off to the organisers, it was an extremely well organised & well Marshalled race. My only gripe would be the finish, I found it a tad confusing entering it on the bike where to go, I was ready to get off when cycling past the crowd of people!!! The 500m dash, was more of 800m plod to the finish for me, it was 5 mins of torture getting from the bike drop to the finish.

    Am skipping GF next year in favour of WAR expert and/or Achill Roar Expert.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,122 ✭✭✭ c montgomery


    nerraw1111 wrote: »
    People complaining that an adventure race is too tough? It's supposed to be, that's what makes the race. The pain, the never agains, the why am i doing this.

    Why do you want it easier? Try a triathlon I'd you want paved roads.

    The cycle wasn't that technical. You don't need to train for that section. If it was paved, ppl wouldve still walk it. The problem wasn't the surface, it was that ppl were shattered. If you couldn't cycle it, it's because you were too tired. Last year I walked huge parts of the cycle.

    The skelp was pretty much same as last year.

    I just want to echo what was said above.

    This is an adventure race, not a triathlon or a cycle race. You should expect this type of terraine.
    For all those saying they might not do it next year as it was too hard, well maybe your too soft at the moment. Get out there, get training and next year dominate it.

    The entire cycle was do able on a racer with standard tyres. People hitting potholes is their own fault, slow down and avoid them.

    Of all the popular adventure races around i think this has the easiest cycle, if the offroad section was not there i would actually think it was too easy with very little in the way of climbing. The wicklow ROAR and WAR have much more demanding cycles.

    Also people can always use a mountain bike if they cant manage it on a racer. The offroad sections would be a breeze then:)

    Im prob sounding like a right as*hole right now but i just dont like people winging about aspects of a race just because they found them difficult.

    Well done to everyone who took part and a big congrats to all the elites who make me want to train more and more.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,122 ✭✭✭ c montgomery


    CKWPORT wrote: »
    Legendary Picture!



    As for the cycle route, the organisers had no choice to go that route, people were blocking the ambulances last year on the other road. Some competitors were more interested in their own progress than letting an ambulance past them...as much as I hate the new route too, mainly because of puncture potential, I don't think they had any choice but to use it.

    Scelp on the other hand is getting dangerous, I think there was quite a few falls on it yesterday, one very serious one, I wouldn't be surprised if they come under pressure to remove that section for next year.

    Was pleasantly surprised with my performance yesterday, managed 5.17, big improvement over 6.09 last year.

    Hats off to the organisers, it was an extremely well organised & well Marshalled race. My only gripe would be the finish, I found it a tad confusing entering it on the bike where to go, I was ready to get off when cycling past the crowd of people!!! The 500m dash, was more of 800m plod to the finish for me, it was 5 mins of torture getting from the bike drop to the finish.

    Am skipping GF next year in favour of WAR expert and/or Achill Roar Expert.

    With the price of GF and the over inflated prices of the hotels for this weekend i was thinking the same.
    Both WAR and ROAR were equally as good this year.

    There is a great buzz in westport however for the whole weekend that you might not get at the others. The locals are fantastic also and really get involved. Its for these reasons that i will come back next year.
    Also ive got a new PB to beat:)


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,618 Mr Freeze


    With the price of GF and the over inflated prices of the hotels for this weekend i was thinking the same.
    Both WAR and ROAR were equally as good this year.

    There is a great buzz in westport however for the whole weekend that you might not get at the others. The locals are fantastic also and really get involved. Its for these reasons that i will come back next year.
    Also ive got a new PB to beat:)

    We sure are!

    The main reason I am skipping it is, it just seems to take over, all I seemed to talk about this summer was Gaelforce. I just want a change for next summer.

    I will do GF again, just not next year.


  • Registered Users Posts: 829 Wonkagirl


    The locals are remarkable right enough, they really get into the spirit of the weekend. It was really lovely to have the households on teh route out supporting us as well, there was a woman about 6km into the first run out on the road with her golden retriever, gorgeous dog wagging his tail, it gave me a real boost!

    What was the garmin reading of the mileage? when i got over the finish line the guy said ''congrats to wonakgirl, over the line after a tough 65km race!'' i felt like strangling him and saying ''it was more than that!!'' i defo reckon 70+?


  • Registered Users Posts: 80 ✭✭✭ watergal


    Wonkagirl wrote: »
    QUOTE]


    Came in in 5:51 . Loved the run, hated the cycle ( but that's what I expected - not experienced enough in that just yet). Held back in the run, but I should have just gone for it as my cycling was crap, spent a lot of time off the bike ( those couple of kms before C.P. as my wheels kept spinning). Thought CP was very busy and hard to navigate around people, but thats just part of the adventure I assume !
    Saw two guys in front come out of the kayak , so I assume they were well and truely soaked from then on.

    I went back down to the quays to see a pals hubbie coming in. He came in just after 8pm. Was talking to a marshal and she said that there were still 30 -50 people out there at that time.
    Spoke to my pals hubbie and he said that a lot of people didn't make the cut-off time to CP, so couldn't go up.

    kept up the endurance theme and went to bed 25 hours after I got up.
    Legs are fine today after all the walking/ booging done last night.

    Very enjoyable and good craic .., well done all


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,064 ✭✭✭ GoHardOrGoHome


    Wonkagirl wrote: »
    What was the garmin reading of the mileage? when i got over the finish line the guy said ''congrats to wonakgirl, over the line after a tough 65km race!'' i felt like strangling him and saying ''it was more than that!!'' i defo reckon 70+?

    66.4 according to my Garmin.
    67 according to a friend. Discrepancy due to route choice on Croagh Patrick I think.


  • Registered Users Posts: 829 Wonkagirl


    66.4 according to my Garmin.
    67 according to a friend. Discrepancy due to route choice on Croagh Patrick I think.

    really/?!! jesus.. i really thought it was going to be more than that.. i thought that was the mileage from last yr, and that the extra bits this yr added 6km in total between the run and cycle?

    I couldnt get my head around the CP path v straight up debate. pre race, my strategy was to go up the path, down straight. when i got to the mountain, the path made no sense to me, it just seemed to add so much mileage. but had a chat with a fella coming down who talked me into doing the path. in hindsight it was easier. then i came straight down.

    my bloody hesitation at the bottom of the reek cost me my 5 hour finish though! have been agonising all day about the 'where i couldve cut out 61 seconds''! ah sure...:cool:


  • Registered Users Posts: 33 ✭✭✭ DG22


    my very first adventure race in fact my first race of any kind i first sat on a racing bike a month ago, my legs are in bits im absolutely wrecked but loved it done feck all training beforehand went over with some friends who persuaded me to sign up for it and was not exspecting the course it was without failing the hardest thing i have ever done i suffered three bouts of cramp in my legs on the the bike that made me lie on the middle off the road in unbelievable pain {thanks to the guy who stopped and gave me deep heat cream done the job} the climb up croagh patrick put me through every emotion i thought my legs were gonna burst ....still with three bouts of cramp and two punctures i still managed a time of 5.29.58 which i am very proud of ...so what i would like to say is a MASSIVE shout out to everyone who took part in gael force this year it is a great achievement for everyone to say they took part in this event and you all deserve the respect that goes with words i did gael foce 2010 it is a serious undertaking for anyone and im gonna train hard and go back next year to do it all over again see ye all then:D:D:D


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,064 ✭✭✭ GoHardOrGoHome


    DG22 wrote: »
    i suffered three bouts of cramp in my legs on the the bike that made me lie on the middle off the road in unbelievable pain {thanks to the guy who stopped and gave me deep heat cream done the job} the climb up croagh patrick put me through every emotion i thought my legs were gonna burst ....still with three bouts of cramp and two punctures i still managed a time of 5.29.58 which i am very proud of ..

    That was a friend of mine! I'll pass on your thanks but I don't think he'll be too happy to hear that you beat him! :D


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