Monday, 10 May 2010

One family 5K

Following the pretty positive experience of competing in the ARC 10K I signed up for the 'onefamily' 5k run. Also, I have never run a 5k race so thought it was time to put that right. Onefamily is a charity that supports single parent families. The race started fifteen minutes late with about sixty or seventy runners toeing the starting line. There didn't appear to be very many competitive runners present, which my presence in the top five runners in the first few hundred metres confirmed. A few hundred metres into the race and a look at the Garmin demonstrated I was running at the suicidal pace of almost five minute miles and I backed right off and fell back into about seventh place. By the first kilometre I had settled into six minute mile pace and had moved up to fourth place.
The first mile elapsed in 06:01. However, the guy in third place, a couple of paces in front seemed to be suffering and the pace was dropping towards 06:30. Consequently I pressed on into third place. About 2.5KMs in I was pretty much running on my own. The fourth place guy was now probably four hundred metres back and the first and second place guys were about the same ahead of me and I had settled for finishing third. The second mile split was 05:59.
The course consisted of two laps of the Furze road and Ordnance road. Soon after the beginning of the second and lap and just before the second mile split I realised the gap between me and the leaders had closed. I decided to maintain my six minute mile pace and see how close it took me to the leaders. Going back up Ordnance survey road the northerly breeze against us was noticeably stiff now and I continued to close the gap and could sense the leaders, especially the leader were slowing up. Both leaders were level with each other now and they looked over their shoulder to see me closing to about 100 metres.
Just before the right hand turn back onto Chesterfield road I drew level with them and decided to move onto the lead. I thought it was worth the risk as, if I blew up then so be it, as I have a poor finishing kick and unless I opened a gap now then it was pointless to stay level. Additionally, the worst case scenario would be I that I would blow up and finish in the same time I would by staying level and the best case would be finishing quicker and maybe even winning the race.
The third mile elapsed in 06:01 and I knew now the course was long by up to quarter of a mile. I quickly opened a gap of about thirty metres and just continued to maintain a pace of about 05:50 minute miles. However, the former leader put a burst in and I had to move well into the red zone. With about 200 metres to go the guy in second place put in another burst and I had to lay down another sprint over the last 200 metres. I passed through finish the line in 19:53 with second and third place following five or six seconds later.
The race was 5.4KMs, which according to MacMillan gave me an 18:22 5k finish. Not exactly the fastest 5k winning time in the world and I have to admit being a little embarrassed to win a '5k' race in such a comparatively slow time. However, there's a saying about a gift horse and looking it in the mouth. The very, perhaps overly so, generous winning prize of a one hour flying lesson voucher was greatly appreciated.


Grellan said...

You were flying, you don't need a lesson.

I don't care what the winning time was, the feeling of crossing the line first after such a tactical race has to be fantastic. Well bloody done - you should be singing from the rooftops.

bricey said...

congrats on the victory. Remember you can only beat those who turn up on the day so don't be embarrassed!! Enjoy!

Westley said...

Thanks for the comments guys. How I 'played' the race tactically was very satisfying. Went out with a plan, stuck to it and it worked even better than expected.

Brendan, glad to see you're back running more regularly and everything is holding up well.

bricey said...

Thanks Westley. Not sure I'd call it 'regular' yet but it does feel good to be doing 'something' at last!


cool win:]