Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Crewing for a Champion

In the world of a person who lives far away from me lays the dreams of a champion that will soon be realized. What does it take to be a champion? It takes hard work, passion and a competitive spirit willing to risk all in order to make it to the finish line first. In the minds of most Lisa Bliss was not a favorite to win Badwater but she shocked the world. A pretty young girl who smiles all of the time yet has a burning desire to succeed and will risk all to do just that. She welcomes all into her world but on the racecourse she is a fierce competitor. While she talks, smiles and giggles she runs with purpose and the heart of a lion.

When Lisa Bliss asked me to be a part of her Badwater team in 2007 I accepted her offer without hesitation. She is someone who immediately gained my trust, put me at ease and accepted me for who I am without judgement. She saw through all of the barriers and disguises that I put up and looked directly into my heart and saw things that others missed. She is a very nice person who gives everyone a chance.

We first met when I paced her at Western States in 2005. While she had a successful race I walked away feeling as though I had failed her. I had promised her that I would do my best to help her achieve a sub-24 hour finish and I walked away knowing deep inside that I could have given her more. Since that day I’ve spent all of my time waiting for a second chance. A chance that would make it all okay. Badwater 2007 would give me that second chance.

The most difficult task for me and probably the others as well would be to find the courage to be a part of a team of people who barely knew each other. Though we did not know one another Lisa trusted us to care for her and to guide her safely across the desert while also making sure we cared for ourselves as well. Though fearful I had no doubt that the five of us would mesh together and strive for the common goal of getting Lisa to the finish line as quickly as possible.

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Glenn Tachiyama's Photos
Lisa Bliss' Photos
Lisa's Blog
Badwater results
Click here to make a donation to Lisa's Badwater Charity


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