Wabo - did you try the coca tea or leaves? I did the Inca Trail a few years back and we were practically force fed them by the guides, they did help (I know this advice won't help lloyd due to lack of coca bushes in the alps).
One general point is that how you react to altitude is unpredictable. The fittest member of our group suffered from altitude sickness at Cusco and was unable to continue to Machu Picchu. He still had not acclimatised by the time we returned 5 days later.
Lloyd, I ran Leadville a couple of years ago and Wasatch Front last year and so have some experience of this.
The altitude is a tricky one. From everything I read it appears that unless you can spend c. 3 weeks at altitude before a race then it is unlikely that you will have enough time to acclimatise...I did not have time for that given work and family. The theory if time is tight is that you should simply get to altitude as close to the race as possible (i.e. within 24 hours of the start) so that your body does not have a chance to adjust...the technical explanations for this are beyond my grasp of physiology but there is a good article here if you are interested:http://www.trailrunnermag.com/article.php?id=171&cat=4In both cases me and the wife (who also ran) swooped into town the day before the race. We also took Ginkgo Biloba which is a herbal remedy recommended for altitude sickness..and which seemed to be OK! Definitely felt the effects in Leadville (developed altitude induced asthma) and Wasatch (which both get up to c. 14,000ft or so from memory) mostly after 15 hours plus of racing.
I have biked lots in alps getting up over 2,000 metres and felt no effects and so you might find that this does not go high enough to impact you. Hope this is some help!
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