Final race of the year and some very good results at the JP Morgan CC.
Now I hate evening races with a passion and preparation was against me – flew in the night before at 11pm and legs not recovered from last week. I’d be happy with a sub 19min over 5.6km.
My warm-up was the run to Centennial Park after work (6km), but I arrived 1 hour early. Saw the usual HuRTS suspects at the Allens tent, most down-playing their chances. Round 2 warm up with Jeet and a nervous Tom before I found myself at the start line. Interestingly saw Olympians Jeff Hunt and Marty Dent nearby too.
|Start line – I’m hiding left side in fluro yellow|
I start in a good spot, right near Macca, Timmy, Enda and Conway. Gun goes off and by the first (and only) ascent, too many muppets are blocking my way running sub 3:20 pace. I follow Enda onto the sidewalk latch onto a group of 6 as we pass 1km marker in 3:25. Breathing ierratic and definitely not comfortable.
The next 3km is relatively uneventful and I do my best (unsuccessfully) to close the 20m gap to the group ahead. Some solid splits with my pace generally 3:15 min/km along the long stretch of road. .
I knew to wait for the 4km before making my move. It’s a false hill and by the Fox Studios Gate turn, a stiff headwind emerges. The challenge is being stranded without a group, battling mental demons and feeling rubbish.
It is just after this point though that the group in front starts to fade badly. I look like a hero despite my terrible 3:27 min split for the 4 to 5km stretch. I am able to pass the group (including Enda) with ease. Coming onto the grass, I feel some heavy breathing but have no interest in a sprint finish. With a final surge, I stride over the timing mat in 18:17.
Delighted to find out later this put me top 20 and maybe a 2 min Pb vs 2011 (when I did it last).
Run summary – 18:17 over 5.6km ave. pace 3:15.
Splits – 3:26, 3:22, 3:11,3:14, 3:27 and 3:12 pace last 0.6km
Great performances all round from people I talked to after:
– Thurston 3rd in 16:35
– Tom Highnam 4th in 17:05 (PB)
– Barts not far behind in 17:20
– Clarky very happy with 18:08
– A Lowsy not far behind me at 18:19
– Enda much stronger than I thought in 18:21 (20s PB)
– Macca 18:43
– Conway hamstring handicapped but close to his PB with 19:13
– Jeet stoked with 19:16 (over 1 min PB?)
– Timmy Lindop 19:30ish under an alias
Also a very solid effort from my work team. Charlie ran 30s faster than expected mid 21s, followed by Matt, Wll and Wooey in close succession around 22 min.
Thanks to Tom for offering great hospitality at the Allens tent – very kind.
|Lorie at the finish line|
Quiet achiever Lorie did 31 minutes … not sure if this is a PB but have to admire her for just turning up and giving it a go. I finished off the day with a burger, a drink and 3km of warm down.
Overall a great race but one that seriously hurt. Lucky we only have to do this once a year.
|Conway pretty happy with his low 19s|
I’ve realised now in 2014, I have PB’ed every single distance from 5km, 5.6km, 10km, half and marathon. I’ll eat my hat if I ever do that again.