The Mt. Washington Road Race winds it's way up over 4,660 ft to an elevation of over 6,200ft (the finish line is below the summit of 6,288ft).The race is highly competitive drawing athletes from Italy and Colorado as well as all of the 'local' competitors from the northeast corridor. For me as well as many others this was a special chance to brush shoulders, and then get thoroughly spanked, by some of the best mountain runners in the country. A prize purse five places deep ensures fast times.
Although the 2016 race had perfect conditions, often athletes are fighting the weather as much as the climb. Barely more than week prior to the race, racers found this image awaiting them as the race began to focus more prominently in their thoughts. Does that look like an image to inspire confidence in running a road race? Not to me.