I found out that I am running leg #9 for HTC this weekend. The HTC website gives a fairly detailed description of each relay leg on their website. I guess they want you to know what you are getting yourself into! :-)
The ratings (Easy, Moderate, Hard, or Very Hard) in the handbook were a collaborative effort of four HTC veterans, each with roughly 23 years of experience participating in the event. To determine leg ratings, distance was considered negligible,with elevation drops and gains considered the primary influence.
Two reasons for this approach:
1) captains can easily share two pieces of information about a particular leg with their runners, and 2) this provides a side-by-side comparison of all 12 running assignments. While we don’t expect unanimous agreement among every runner, we hope the ratings and information below will help make informed decisions about assigning legs.
The course descriptions take into account BOTH distance and terrain. The assumption is that in relation to an "E" leg, an "M" is 10% harder, an "H" is 20% harder, and a "VH" is 30% harder.
Here is a description of what I will be running:
LEG #9, Distance 7.04 miles, Moderate
LEG DESCRIPTION: Long leg over relatively flat terrain primarily on Springwater Trail.
LEG #21, Distance 5.00 miles, Moderate
LEG DESCRIPTION: Flat, slightly downhill terrain near a creek on gravel back roads.
LEG #33, Distance 7.72 miles, Hard
LEG DESCRIPTION: Rolling hills on narrow country roads.
In total I will run 19.76 miles- not too bad, it's less than a marathon! Hopefully the description of "HARD" on leg #33 is just an exaggeration.....