Dead Runners society race report
Serpentine New Year's Day 10km - Thursday 1st January 2004.
Another year started with a trip to the big city to race round Hyde Park.
Happy 2004 to all from the right hand side of the pond. The beautiful Shelley and I celebrated 2004 as we did in 2003 by heading down to Central London for the Serpentine Running Club New Year's Day 10km.
Up early, drive down the M11 and then on the Underground train to Hyde Park corner, we weren't the only runners on the train by the time we got off. Into Hyde Park where the race was to take place. 3 laps on a traffic free circuit of part of one of London's great city centre parks.
It was a chilly start to the New Year but London had the best weather of the land this day, it was really bad further north. Cold and damp just before the race with a light breeze, not too bad for racing. I did about 3/4 mile jogging to warm up then I lined up at the start with Shelley. As this was London it was quite a cosmopolitan field, I heard French spoken near me and Shelley wasn't the only American running. However no sign of visiting Deads Jerry Worthing and Nangel Lindberg :-(
Off we went, set off in a light drizzle. I went off fairly hard and was soon past Shelley, after about 500m the path got a lot narrower and it was quite hard to pass runners. 1km in 4.29, I was moving a bit more freely by now and still passing runners. 2km in 8.38/4.09 and 3km in 12.45/4.07. Past the finish for the first time, the rain had stopped, moving well as round we went again for the 2nd lap. 4km in 17.01/4.16 and 5km in 21.14/4.13, felt tired by now and a runner came past me. Down towards the Serpentine (lake in Hyde Park), 6km 25.27/4.13, past the finish. I started lap 3 at about 27.35 on my watch, I was slightly alarmed to see them already holding the finish tape for the winner. I didn't see Paul Tergat at the start!
A slight climb as I started the last lap, very tired by now, still passing the odd runner but another came back at me. 7km in 29.39/4.12 and 8km in 33.55/4.16. I was lapping the stragglers at the stage and I had caught a lady in light blue and together we passed another lady in white, as we headed down to the lake again the two ladies started to race each other and got ahead of me. 9km in 38.14/4.19 I picked up the pace and repassed the ladies, ran on hard down towards the finish. The light blue lady came back at me in the finish straight and got ahead but I managed to stay ahead of the white lady. Finished in 42.20/4.06.
Very tired on finishing, not bad in the conditions, my best ever 10km road race as a veteran (also my first 10km road race as a veteran :-)). I thanked the light blue lady for a good race and realised that she was one of Shelley's middle distance veteran rivals that I had seen in the summer in the Eastern vets track league.
I then waited for Shelley to finish, she set a pb in this race last year. Unfortunately she had been suffering with a cold during the holidays and finished slower than planned in 47.49.
We did a very slow 1/2 mile cool down jog together as a gentle recovery run, my left hamstring was very sore indeed. This was my first serious road race since the Boston marathon, the last 2km was definitely running from memory of what I used to do before I took up racewalking!
I finished 85th/434 in 42.20, last year I was 85th/429 in 42.34. Shelley finished 207th in 47.49, she was 4th W50.
The race was won by our Bedford and County AC clubmate Huw Lobb (2h18 in London 2003, 2nd british man to finish). Huw also ran for Cambridge when we were at the number 1 university. Huw won easily in 30.32, over a minute clear of 2nd place (a visitor from Boston, MA!). Huw is training hard for the London marathon and a possible Olympic qualifying time, Bedford already have two ladies (Liz Yelling and someone called Paula) qualified for the Olympic marathon.
http://www.dwknight.co.uk/2004/nyd10k/5efd1564.html shows Tony (389) racing
http://www.dwknight.co.uk/2004/nyd10k/5efd1590.html shows Shelley (398) racing.
Midweek. Warrington, Cheshire.
Weekends. Milton, Cambridge.