Flat legs, no real taper and lots of pork from last night’s Filo banquet. The 7:45am is not too bad, but waiting 30 min in the registration line leaves me with minimal warm-up.
This is a dead flat course with a double 5km loop and a 300m track finish. Being such a fast course, it’s no surprise to see HuRTS runners out in force. The start has me shoulder to shoulder with Barts, Quentin and Lambert at the start.
The wait is made worse by introductions of the elites – as unnecessarily dragged out as the last hour of The Hobbit Part 2.
Gun goes off and a stampede of kids on the initial 800m is a joke. I lose sight of the 32 min runners and resolve to run my own ‘slow‘ pace. 3:18 for 1km is snail pace in such a deep field.
Right turn at Kevin Coombs, the space opens and here I’m strangely alone. Hard work bridging gaps to mini packs. I guess my pace to be 3:15s, but I feel much worse. The 3km turnaround gives sight of elites (60s ahead) and the front HuRTS guys (30s ahead). I’ve already given up so much ground.
Long grind back to the start – sadly no one to sit behind else the pace drops. I also feel my legs are holding me back. At 5km (16:38), I’ve only just passed Macca though breathing is well controlled.
Onward with the grind and often having company helps. No luck for me, and solo it is to the 7km turnaround. Liam Adams is chasing a car whilst being hunted by 4 guys who look like they haven’t eaten in days.
My gaze fixes on the distant Quentin and CT 20s in front. Juicy carrots for a long chase home. The 7-9km section is where I do best. Pace is dead on 3:15s, but this ‘feels‘ much faster when all others fade. Up I move 8 places before the final 600m inside the stadium walls.
My motivation kicks up again seeing eventual 2nd place female Eloise ahead. My triumph (if you call it that) was a pretty unimpressive kick on the back straight to avoid being ‘chicked‘.
|Jogging down the finish straight|
Frankly I’m not sure whether to be happy with sub-33 or disappointed without a PB. Slower by 5s than my PB at North Head in March. A humbling 35th place.
Splits below – 16s negative split and bang on with the plan.
– First 5km in 16:38 (3:18, 3:18, 3:21, 3:17, 3:23)
– Second 5km in 16:22 (3:13, 3:17, 3:18, 3:20, 3:14)
Lesson today is that I lack speed, particularly on such flat courses. This comes down to always skipping Tuesday intervals. Perhaps the need is for some track work.
|Empty 400m track taken by Lorie|
Well done to the group with PBs left right and centre:
– Tom 32:07, giving in-form Barts and 32 flat a scare
– Lewis 32:45, most improved in 2 months
– Lambert 35:14, coming off some solid summer training
– A Biggs 35:53, he’s back
– Darren 36:51, wins the husband/wife dual
|HuRTS Squad outsider the Striders Tent|
No run is complete without a B&E roll, this time at at Bowen’s, Orange Grove Markets. Part reward for myself, part payment to the driver.
|B&E roll at Bowen’s|
Thick meaty bacon, pillow soft bun offset by sauce choices that were quite uninspired. Tomato sauce doesn’t do this $7 roll justice. Happy wife happy life.
|Happy with the B&E quality|
So what’s next for me?
SMH half in 2 weeks time. Did 82:15 here in 2012, my one and only attempt at a half.