Monday, 5 September 2011

FAST 4 Great Eccleston....a double win!

 4 of the 13 races I've completed this year have been races in the Manchester Parks series.  The last one is the very challenging Boggart Hole Clough 10K on September 18th.  But that would have meant a 5 week gap since the Chernobyl 10k. on August 14.
 A gap too long for my liking; so I looked at the options for an "entry on the day" race yesterday;  with an eye especially for a race which Pat could take part in as well.
 The race would serve as good feed back on how I could compete at race pace bearing in mind current revised medication.   We spotted a race, The FAST 4 MILER (GREAT ECCLESTON) which if it did "exactly what it said on the tin" would prove an ideal low key choice.  Another visit to the Fylde, Lancashire.
  For once, I was hoping for a sub 7 minute first mile and if things went as most flat races there was a good chance this could be maintained for a sub 28 minutes clocking.
  A 2 mile warm up (I would have liked more) and we assembled with just over 50 runners for the 10.30 start.  Low key , "friendly" indeed!
 Once again with the assistance of the garmin to monitor pace it sounded for the first mile showing 6:59.  I hav overtaken a couple of faster starters and was in "no man's land" chasing race organiser, Alan Taylor, of Wesham Roadrunners. 
 And chase him I did but could make no impression over mile 2,  covered outside target in 7.06 and mile 3,  back on target in 6.59.   Some impression made over the last mile in 6.52.   Garmin 4 in 27.57
 As per the Elswick Express the garmin recorded  before the finish line, conveniently positioned just off the road. So "official"  time 28.06
 I jogged back to support Pat through the last half mile and she responded well picking up a place to finish in 35.50, just under 9 minute mile pace.
 In the small "select" field we both placed first in the M/F 60 age groups; adding to our wine stocks. Hardly a mass quality race field but it was quite nice to achieve a double win in the week of our 41st. wedding anniversary. 
 When we married in 1970 I had already been running competitively for about 7 years and steadily recovering to a reasonable state of fitness after lung surgery. 
 Pat had  no sporting background at all. A fairly relucantant Phys. Ed. participant but to her credit she has embraced running over the years since. She ran an excellent 3:46 marathon in London 1984 but her races since have been few and far between.  
 Hopefully  we can achieve more "double" wins in the future. 
In truth the "Fast 4" was as pan flat as we had hoped, the Garmin feedback showing 30 mts differential in height gained but the gradients were hardly challenging; just enough to take the edge of 100%.
 A very reasonable "goodie back" for the £7 on the day entry; with a t-shirt , more likely to be worn as it was unprinted, a medal, bottle of water, home made cake and a device which we were somewhat puzzled about but looks like it could be useful if we take up rock climbing.
 Whilst the race proved very useful to those of us seeking a low key,  shortish race  it was puzzling that it was held on the same morning as a half marathon just a few miles away in Blackpool and the day after a 10K from the same seaside venue.   Maybe a different date next year!?

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on your double win and Happy Anniversary