10 of the finest Highlands Hashers showed up at an undisclosed location somewhere deep inside of Morris County for what has fast become a
complete shitshow signature club event: the HH Beer Mile.
History was made as the reigning King of the Beer Mile, Doobie, was bested by newcomer Just Steve, fresh off a dominating performance in the 2017 HH100.
Other hashers who participated in this year’s edition included, Chef Boyardee, a challenger to the crown, as well as Mousehand, Stone Cold, Sherpa, dark horse contender Liability, and Miyagi, participating in the alternate vodka and seltzer division.
There was a strong spectator presence, which included Coach, Donde Es, Gonad, Iron Maiden, Juicy, Mrs. Mousehand, and Wrecking Ball.
As the group gathered to stretch and jog, Liability immediately seized upon the opportunity to get an edge by any means necessary, including playing mind games with the opposition, when he threw some serious shade at Stone Cold, asking “Did you go to Brian’s guy?”
The jokeinsult lingered in the air for an uncomfortable amount of time, until Stone Cold realized that the barb was aimed at him, and, more specifically, his ankle tattoo.
The tension, however, was short-lived as Juicy, the race director for the evening, gathered everyone around for a final review of the rules.
He reminded the group that at the call of “Start!” time would begin, beers would open, and be quickly (at least that was the hope) consumed.
Runners were reminded that they could not start running until their beer was finished and turned upside down for proof of completion, at risk of incurring a time penalty for leaving beer behind.
Then, ensuring that Donde Es knew which left turns to make in case he joined in, Juicy directed the runners to the starting line.
The command to start was given, cans of Budweiser were popped, and runners were on their way.
First out was Chef, followed by Just Steve, Doobie, Stone Cold, Mousehand, Sherpa, Liability, and finally Miyagi, who exited with a cough of seltzer which would turn out to be a sign of things to come.
The first lap ended with Just Steve in the lead, with Chef and Doobie following closely behind.
Beer two and lap two presented no significant challenges, unless you’re talking about Sherpa and Miyagi who began to struggle while Liability was able to make up some serious ground with his “drink as fast as possible” strategy, and quickly moved into fourth position.
Another lap completed, Sherpa was able to rip off a quick quarter and hold his position, while the top of the field shifted slightly, and Mousehand and Stone Cold struggled to hold their middle of the pack positions.
Miyagi decided to DNF, probably a wise choice given the amount of trouble seltzer bombs would give anybody, but he stayed on the track to cheer on the pack.
Doobie, Just Steve, Liability, and Chef exited beer three still trading positions, while Mousehand and Sherpa led the second wave.
Another lap in the books, the men headed back for the dreaded final beer / final lap. First in was Just Steve, followed closely by Doobie, the pair of which had by now separated themselves from the rest of the field.
Now it became clear that this would be a battle of strength vs. strength – Just Steve’s flat out speed versus Doobie’s pounding ability.
Doobie polished off his beer exceptionally quickly, and headed out with a commanding lead. Then, however, Just Steve rallied, and with the last of the beer still making it’s way into his stomach, flipped his switch into “Catch the old guy” mode and just flew around the track, overtaking Doobie and his performance enhancers for a victory in 7:18.
Doobie, undaunted, finished hot on his heels for a 7:31 finish.
By this time, Mark had overtaken and lapped the rest of the field, ensuring a podium finish.
Sherpa kicked into into high gear, and with a blistering attack on lap four overtook Chef and Mousehand for 4th place.
Then it was a battle between Mousehand and Chef, who was closing in fast. But, in a moment of good sportsmanship, Chef, who had caught up to the Hand, ran in side by side in solidarity.
Seeing the comradeship, Mousehand and Miyagi then turned their attention to Stone Cold, and ran him in. SC, who struggled for the last beer, opened up a can of whoop ass on the last .15, and came in with an epic finish.
And with that, the 2017 HH Beer Mile ended.
The championship belt was passed from Doobie to Just Steve, who is now more or less contractually obligated to come to more HH events.
Congratulations to the 2017 Beer Mile Champion, Just Steve!