Name: ANDY VELAZCO
City: JONESBORO
State: GA
Country: USA
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Nationality: USA
Occupation: PHYSICIAN
Birthday: 03-22-1948
Age: 55
T-Shirt: L
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Number of Years Running: 18
Number of Marathons and 50k's: 95

Distances:

Qualifying Standard I Meet-#5
Olander park 24 hour. Sept.2002;
JFK 50 Mile; Nov.2002; 10:42.49
Sunmart 50 Mile; Dec.2002; 11:04.45
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50 mile races-JFK 50 Mile; Nov.2002; 10:42.49
Sunmart 50 Mile; Dec.2002; 11:04.45
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100km races-
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100mi races-
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100mi+ races-

Previous Badwater Racing Experience:
Previous Badwater Crewing Experience: Crew pacer for Mike Smith (2002); paced 90 plus miles. Learned about mental fortitude
Previous Badwater Clinic Experience:

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My Badwater Finishing Prediction:

between 40-50 hours. I trained to pace Mike; He buckled in 45 hours. I paced him for more than 90 miles. I think that I can do the total distance.

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My Weirdest Experience:

running into the second night at badwater, and trying to identify and name the shadows in the desert. We saw elephants, horse, camels, etc. It helped to pass the time.

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My Most Challenging Race Experience:

Training for Badwater. Not knowing the terrain, the weather conditions, or knowing the distance. Learning to eat and drink, and what to eat and drink.Preparing for an unknown experience

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WhyI Run Ultras:

To test my limits;
Because I enjoy finding out that I can go further;
To travel and see the country

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Why I want a slot on the start line of the 2003 Badwater Ultramarathon:

Mike Smith ans 2002 Crew are all members of the 50 State marathon Club. We decided during Badwater that we all will try to finish the run. We all plan to return as runners and crew until all have had the chance to run it. Badwater is been a mental goal in the back of my mind for many years. It was an experience to see it as a crewman. Now I want to experience badwater as a runner.

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My Other Ultrasport Experience:

For many yeras I was a car racer. I competed in many amateus,club, and professional car races. As matter of fact running was my endurance training for racing for many years. Soon however running became important by itself. I bike every other day as cross training.

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Media that I will represent or write for:

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Media that will cover my experience in this race:

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The Charity that I will represent and raise funds for is:

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Do I speak English?: yes
Does my crew speak English?: yes
Will I hike Mt. Whitney after the race?: yes
Do I know that I need a Permit to hike on Mt. Whitney?: yes

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Here is my athletic resume:

I am a physician and orthopaedic surgeon by trade and a runner by avocation. I am 54 years old with a wife ( finisher of 42 marathons) and five children. I have been a runner for many years now. I started like most of us jogging a few miles to keep in shape,and to do some exercise. However soon I started to run because I felt better. As an orthopaedist soon I started to read about physiology an medical problems related to running. As my running library grew, also I improved as a runner. 10 K's took me to half marathons, and those to marathons. In my readings, I learned about some of the people that fostered the popularity of running. I was intrigued by the personality and fortitude of those athletes and their trainers I read about runners like Salazar and that were tough to train but had a physiological gift to run fast. I was however tremendously interested in the not so gifted runners that were however able to do incredible feats like running across a continent, across a desert, run for 24-48 hours, enter 50,100 miles a more lengthy races. I learned that these were not athletes that train hours a day but regular men and women that have jobs, children,etc. They have enough mental fortitude to like the sport and to challenge themselves. Many years ago I read about Al Arnold's feat of crossing Death Valley. I was amazed that anybody had the guts to do it. At that time 10 k's were difficult for me.It was unthinkable to see that distance. I started running more and graduated to marathons. I met Wally Herman in 1993, the day that he run his 548 marathon. He told me about the 50 States Marathon Group, and I became interested in it. Soon I found myself traveling to run marathons in every state. The club members helped me into running in trails, ultras, back to back marathons, multiple marathons in a week and finally into a 24 hr race. They taught me about drinking, eating, and clothing needed to do endurance racing. Mike Smith, a club member,asked me to crew for him in his attempt to run at Badwater this year. I jumped at the chance, and with three other members of the 50 States Club, we had the privilege of seeing him buckle. My Badwater experience almost completed one of my mental challenges. I was able to see and experience the desert of Arnold and Benyo. Moreover I was able to meet Al Arnold before and after our crossing. We were able to plan and train for the run, and we were able to do it. We learned a lot, and created deep friendships. I have now run a marathon in every state, and have reached progressively many of my goals as a runner. It was my privilege to meet some of the runners and experience the 25th Sunprecautions Badwater Ultramarathon. I feel that I am now ready mentally and physically to attempt the run myself. I hope that you will allow me the chance to follow so many great athletes across Death Valley.