I was so busy snapping pictures that I didn't realize it was you passing by after the second road crossing. Unfortunately, at least one of the shots I took of you was mis-focused. I'll be posting photos from the whole event soon.
Regarding the Garmin startup routine, these days, I find that starting either at home or when I start changing my shoes in the car seems to work well. The 410 I use can run 10 hours or more on battery so starting it from home works good. Starting it from home also has the advantage of getting a better fix on satellites/better accuracy. I've noted that the accuracy improves with making changes in direction and that's just a natural process when driving to an event with it on--it's then all ready when it's time to race.
How do you get it to not time out and go to sleep? It does that automatically after a couple of minutes, and then it needs satellites again when it wakes up. I guess you could record a track that whole time, but then you have to reset it when you start.
Congratulations on the result - it's always a nice to be surprised on the upside by one's physical performance.
Maybe next year I'll make some more signs to mark the miles as well - there probably are a fair number of people who are used to pacing themselves using miles who would appreciate it. Though I'm not sure I'll want to make bigger signs - they're enough of an armload when I start out to mark the course as is, even with stashing most of them by the side of the road just before the 2k mark, rather than carrying the whole course's worth from the start.
This was actually the 3rd year doing this trail race. Like in "three strikes".