Steve Clark, captured in this post biking to the start of the Birkebeiner, camped at the start line overnight, skied the race and biked 100 miles home, then endured a terrifying crash in his pick-up truck.
FasterSkier.com has the follow up on one of the more remarkable stories from the 2012 Birkebeiner.
First, the race.
Clark finished his 10th Birkebeiner, skiing freestyle, in 3:19:59. The 100-mile bike ride from his farm in Cushing took its toll on his race-day performance.
“The Birkie sort of is a culmination of the skiing season for me,” Clark told FasterSkier’s Alex Matthews. “You really want to have your best time, and the biking did seem like it would compromise the race, and it did. There’s no doubt about it that I was pretty tired at the start line.”
Then, the crash.
With no sleep Sunday night, Clark set off early Monday morning for a flight to Mexico and an ultra marathon. Driving his pick up truck, Clark dozed and flew off the highway. He narrowly missed a cluster of trees, and escaped unharmed, but regretful.
“After the going off the road I felt awful knowing that I could have died or worse, killed someone else,” Clark wrote in an email to FasterSkier. “I made a decision not to do the race in Mexico … Family members were very concerned about my state of mind and it was hard to argue with them that I had made sound judgments, because clearly getting into a truck being that tired was very poor judgment.”
Check below for a video of Clark, the manager of a biking and walking program run by Transit for Livable Communities, in the Twin Cities.