A super fun run! I ran leg 25 on team 2. This meant I was running an all women's unforked leg. I went out alone and the forest was actually quite empty from the start to 3. Then I caught another woman, and someone caught us on 4. On 5 I drifted a bit far right and a train of 6 women came running by on my left. This was frustrating to get caught so quickly, but they all started around the same time and I was being cautious in the beginning and then made small hesitations on 3, 4 and 5.
I followed the train to 6, and then we got lost on 7. I wasn't navigating :) But we were right next to a trail so I and others figured it out quickly. At this point I felt like we were caught by another group of women and we seemed to be so many. I ran to the front of the group, and I thought there were like 15 women behind me. Looking at winsplits we were still the same group of 7, but it felt like so many more in the forest!
We again missed 8. We were running a bit too fast for me to navigate, but I hoped that someone else had it. No. But at the end of the leg we started climbing this long hill, which I was pretty sure was wrong, but everyone else was so secure. But then I saw another women who was most certainly running from the control, so I took off and could even see the flag from a long way off.
And then I was done with following people who kept on getting lost, so I took off in the lead and never let it go! This is where it got awesome and I just ran and ran. I led the group from there onwards and caught the woman who didn't miss 8. I made small mistakes on 12 and 13, but still punched 13 just ahead of the group (although lost the gap that I had) and then sprinted into the last control and finish. I haven't felt that strong physically in such a long time and it was such a thrill to run that hard. The pressure of having others running behind me really pushed me to run hard but still navigate. It's a good thing that the course was ending, though, because the wheels were getting close to coming off with the navigation. Fun, fun, fun!!