Dead Runners society race report
Eastern Vets AC road relays, Hemingford Grey - Sunday 2nd May 2004.
A brief return to running for this race. In 2003 I made my debut in veterans competition in these relays, 6 days after the Boston marathon. I felt a bit more comfortable running this year!
Today the beautiful Shelley and I competed for Bedford and County AC in the Eastern Veterans AC road relays. Off we went down the A14 to the village of Hemingford Grey near St. Ives, we arrived in good time and met up with our Bedford team mates. I was going to be in a team of my own this team, Bedford had 9 M40 men this time, with 4 men per team I was the odd one out, I was going to lead off for the incomplete C team. Only 3 ladies had turned up for Bedford, Shelley got the anchor leg for the ladies team.
I jogged out to the start, about 1.25 miles from race HQ, felt a bit stiff and tired. This was to be my first running race since February, everything since then had been racewalking. We started on a country lane outside the village, the relay leg was about 2 miles. We all lined up and off we went, didn't try to go off too hard. As the pace settled down I started to work my way through, I passed one of the Bedford M60 runners, the 2nd placed lady and one of my former clubmates from Huntingdonshire AC. As we entered the village of Hemingford Abbots I was running with a runner from Bedford Harriers (deadly rivals) and closing on one of my old training partners from Cambridge and Coleridge AC. Around halfway I got past Marcus from C and C, the Bedford Harrier got away. Through the village on roads we used to train on when I ran with Huntingdonshire AC, pushing quite hard to get away from Marcus, feeling very tired by now. Out of the village, after this only one more turn before the finish but the last bend took ages to come. Marcus got briefly back ahead but I got away again, finally round the last bend. Very hard in from then as I knew Marcus had a killer sprint finish but I held him off.
Very tired at the end, not a bad run, 12.41 for 2 miles. Last year I did 13.16 in this race although it was 6 days after the Boston marathon and I was a little bit sore. When I got my breath back I did a cool down jog, I went round the lap the opposite way to the racers so I could cheer people on. Just after I left the village I saw Shelley zooming along running leg 3 for the Bedford ladies team, she was a long way behind the other ladies teams though as we had a 65 year old lady on leg 2. Just behind Shelley I could see the M40 leaders on leg 4, in the lead was Mansfield Harriers but closing rapidly was our star veteran runner Jim. Jim won the M40 10000m at last years British vets track championships, it looked good for a Bedford win :-)
Back to the finish and sure enough Jim soon zoomed in for a comfortable win in the M40 race :-) I understand that Bedford won the M50 and M60 races as well. Shelley brought the Bedford ladies home in 5th with a time of 14.28, an almost completely solo run for her. After it was all over I jogged back to race HQ, in total I got about 6.5 miles in today.
a nice morning out for a run in the country in the early spring sunshine.
Tony Bell - firstname.lastname@example.org
Midweek - Warrington, Cheshire.
Weekends - Milton, Cambridge.