Another GP race, another runners up placing. After 4 events (3 2nds and a 3rd- could I have come second in that race had I not raced a 5k the night before? Probably) I am currently top of the standings (as John Compton kindly decided to forego the Skyline 5k) and running faster times than this time last year. This is promising as last year I was able to kick on and run a 2:35 marathon in the fall.
Having said all that I must admit that I felt kind of blah after Saturday’s race. I ended up being 50 seconds behind the winner and over 40 seconds in front of 3rd place- that’s a pretty lonely 5k! Most of the same protagonists were present for this race as at Twilight. There were two key differences at this race though. Firstly, it was clear from the outset that John was on a mission to run fast as he shot up the hill out of the gate at a sub 5 minute pace- at least at Twilight I had been able to keep him company for half a mile. Secondly at Twilight I felt Aaron was breathing down my neck the whole race and I was running scared, whereas on Saturday I looked around after 200 meters and no one was near me. Chad (who went on to finish another solid third place) had said to me as the gun went off, “have a good race”, I responded with a “you too” and that was that, I was in for just over 16 minutes of solo running!
I eventually finished in a time of 16:20 which on paper is a little disappointing but seeing as my Garmin had an average pace for me of 5:09 (compared to the official 5:14- for some reason the race organizers deem it necessary to finish this race with a sharp left uphill turn into a parking lot instead of finishing the race on the main straightaway) and that I ran solo on a hilly course, I’ll take it I guess.
Afterwards I had fun warming down and hanging out with friends and notching some nice bread and cookies as prizes. Nice start to the weekend!