Dead Runners society race report
Watford open track meeting 800m race -
wednesday 30th May 2001.
Another trip to Watford for a BIG RACE between Tony and Shelley, would speed overcome endurance over 800m?
Last night we went to Watford to run in
another one of the open track meetings. This was going to be something a bit
different as we were going to race each other over 800m! Shelley (track runner)
can run fast and Tony (marathon runner) can't run fast but has loads of
endurance. Shelley always
outsprints Tony at the end of every training run, we have often wondered at what
distance would Shelley's speed be equivalent to Tony's endurance. 800m seemed
like an interesting distance for us to race against each other.
So off we went down the motorway to Watford
(northern edge of Greater London), "North of Watford" is often used by Londoners
to describe the rest of the country to the north of the great metropolis. We
arrived in plenty of time and joined the queue of speedy looking young people to
enter the event. We both put down 2.40 as our anticipated times.
We jogged 3 laps of the track to start our
warm up, did lots of stretching and some drills and strides on the track before
the first events started at 7.00am. Tony did another 5 minutes jogging before we
went down to the track to wait for the 800m races. The last of the 400m races
were being run as they were sorting out the 800m races. As this was a graded
meeting everyone was put in races so that you would be running with runners of
similar ability. There were 7 800m races, the fastest runners were put in the
first races and as expected we were both in the 7th and last 800m.
As the faster 800m races we run we sat by the
side of track waiting our turn, eventually it was our turn. We were racing with
lots of tiny kids, Tony the marathon runner was feeling a bit self conscious in
such a strange environment. We both ended up in lane 5, take your marks,
Off we went, Shelley tucked in behind Tony,
after 100m we broke from our lane and ran to the inside, there were loads of
tiny kids ahead and we gradually started to pass them. End of lap 1 and the
timekeeper said 83 as we went past, not as fast as we thought we would do. Tony
picked up the pace and Shelley was still tucked in behind, still passing some
tiny kids. Going down the back straight there weren't too many kids left to
pass, Tony had visions of passing everyone. Tony tried his hardest to hold
Shelley off round the last bend, Shelley tried to overtake just before the end
of the bend but Tony responded and managed to stay ahead all the way down the
home straight. After the race Shelley realized that it was probably stupid to
try to go on the bend like that going the extra distance and wonders what would
have happened if she had waited until the straight to pass Tony, but it was an
experience to learn from.
That was hard work for both of us, we both
sat down to catch our breath for a few minutes before getting up. And then there
was the obligatory post middle-distance tea for the rough throats. The next race
after ours was a "British Milers Club" 800m race for top runners, the ladies who
ran this race looked just as tired as we felt, they just ran about 30-40s
Tony finished 3rd and Shelley was 4th out of
the 9 runners in our race, Tony's time was 2.43.80 and Shelley set yet another
pb with 2.44.17 :-) Tony wished he had gone out harder, all that waiting around
before start didn't help, he wished that he had done a bit more warming up
before hand. However, the conditions weren't that good, it was quite windy last
night and it was Tony's first "proper" 800m race, Shelley got dragged round to a
new pb so that was a good result from this race.
We did another 10 minutes jogging to cool
down afterwards and then watched some more events before heading home.
Shelley wants a rematch, but Tony thinks 10
years from now is soon enough. :-)
Shelley Walsh Milton, Cambridgeshire, England
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