To call this a race is a stretch. A hard training run is more appropriate.
HuRTS nice guy Brendan W (Wongy) pitched an offer on Friday too hard to refuse.
‘A nice little club run down in Smithfield‘.
Throw in (i) a free car pool, (ii) the promise that the ‘regular‘ is about my pace, and the real clincher… (iii) food at the finish. All for a reasonable $25 race fee.
5:45am pickup and sticky conditions with high rain risk. Must also admit I have NO idea where Smithfield is.
The 10km is an out-and-back that combines rolling grass hills (sports fields, power station) then a few kms inside a pretty unremarkable reserve with a 5km turnaround. Only nasty bit is a 400m stretch where you climb 30m just after the 2km mark. Nothing to lose sleep over.
|SMC 10km course map|
If you rinse and repeat this 3x … that’s the 30k race.
No taper (obviously) and no plan (as always). Simply wanted to bank a LR with some mild curiosity over my fitness levels.
4 guys form the front at sub 4 min pace. I’m a VERY slow starter so I sit 40m behind as ‘thatAsian guy from Cabramatta who has gone out too fast’. A little hill surge at 2.5km leaves just one (Tim) pushing 3:40s upfront.
I eyeball this guy and think …’fit no doubt, but broad shoulders tick, awkward upper body rotation tick… he’s a triathlete, not a runner‘. Unless this is Crowy, very few other ironmen can run a sub 2:40 marathon. I should have this guy covered.
Next 5km is about bridging the gap, which I do bang on 10km. The clock shows 37:05 (slowest split).
Being 10-15kg lighter has advantages – i.e. hills. I put a good 50m on Tim on the ascent (12km), leaving just a lead bike to chase for 18km.
Post this, the race just became one to enjoy. A 30km PB is certainly not on my running bucket list. With a few hi-fives to Wongy, the only thing keeping my pace honest was random cheers plus my watch.
20km is passed in 73:35 and funny enough, all I can think about is what I want for breakfast!
Watch is relegated to the back pocket. I start soaking in the views and ponder property prices in Smithfield. An hour later I mentally wake up with 2km to go. Crossing the line, I conclude that were this a marathon, the 4th lap would really really hurt at 3:30 pace.
Saying that, a strong finish brings a tidy 3 min course record and a maiden 30km time as a future benchmark. I had the course a touch short.
1:49 for 30km at 3:40 min/km.
– lap 1: 37:05
– lap 2: 36:30
– lap 3: 35:45
Also did this run with no breakfast, no gels and no water… pulled through fine.
Great monthly event all round, and the highlight was a little prize money! Enough to buy a box of donuts for example.
Wongy apparently blew up in the last 5kms, but banked a respectable 30km in 2:27.
114km for the week. Reasonably light on with no speed Tuesday, but two swims (Wed and Sat). Foot needs a rest and I should start the taper soon.