Striders 10km at North Head for me was pace, no race. Timmy Lindop is enjoying a dream run of solid training/racing and I had the task of dragging him to a sub 36 min attempt.
Bribed a now huge Lorie with a post-run B&E roll and with that, secured a trusty driver to the 7am start. Not much of a warm-up in the preamble before I’m tucked in 2nd row at the start. Note the posers in the first row – they know who they are.
Simple plan is a steady 3:35s. Always hard maintaining this on the post Gatehouse ascent for 400m (0-1k, 5-6km, 9-10km). Gun goes, I ease the pace on the downhill and let the crowd settle.
Legs feel fresh at 3:40s and some dodging has me quickly establish a steady train by 3km. I look back and Timmy’s still there with Jeet, Renaud and the slower Gibson twin hitching a ride. Pace reads 3:37s and all on track.
Before long it’s down to lap 2 and the 5km climb comes around. Upfront has Criniti gapping Barts, then Lewis some 40m back. A good 40s in front of my train is JFen and later, Enda then Macca.
Round the gate and the guys start to breathe hard. Passing the start (5.8km), I feel good, Jeet and Renaud look OK (for 4km more) but someone is missing!
O well, this was not my fault. Job is over, I’m guilt-free to spin the legs and pace moves to 3:20s. From here it’s just picking up the likes of Gus, Macca, Eoin and Gibson #1. In fact, last 300m climb has me realising a very familiar and tiring Irishman battling at 3:40s pace.
I surge up the hill with the gap rapidly closing. Sadly this move is too late and the competition is triumphant. Being a modest guy, he is more motivated by staying on his feet than celebrating.
35:15 at 3:30 min/km. Watch has this 80m long, consistent with other GPS watches.
– (0-6km pacing) – 3:38, 3:36, 3:32, 3:41, 3:34, 3:36
– (6-10km tempo) – 3:22, 3:26, 3:18, 3:17
Felt I got a good work-out from this with the negative split.
Respectable but non-remarkable times from the squad today. Rolling hills and the U-turn make PBs difficult. Timmy was on the wrong side of 37, but I’m glad to see Renee back with a sub 40 effort.
Finished with a 4km group warm-down, way faster than I’m used to. At least a dozen of the squad backed it up for a brunch at Bench Cafe in Manly – a well known (bacon) ritual. At a minimum, great company with bacon upside.
‘Best B&E roll in the North‘ – needs to be put to the test and I even convince Lewis, Renee and James to bear witness.
How did this simple construction go down?
Well I won’t sit on the fence. Separate write-up to come.