Report from Howard Jeffrey:
I like to do this race for two reasons: it goes through the beautiful city of York where the crowds are out in force to cheer us on and secondly there is nothing much else on in August! Apparently I also became a ‘hero’ for finishing this one. I set off early for the venue because it can get very busy and after a bit of a queue parked in my usual spot ready for a quick getaway. I was aware that it was already beginning to get warm at 8.15 and I have to confess I actually felt a bit queasy which is most unusual. The compere was doing a good job of animating the scene as I approached the venue which resembled a shopping mall. There were many people milling about and the vast majority were not club runners but were ‘doing it for charity’. That probably explains why after more than thirty years of running and racing locally I did not recognise anyone, either before, during or after the race.
It was the 10th anniversary of this race and it is very well organised with bins allocated for predicted times and pacers with yellow banners clearly visible. You have to take station 15 minutes before the start so a proper warm up is difficult although today but because it was already stifling a brief one sufficed. Then again there was the organised warm up which seemed to be a set of random movements that no-one would ever perform except in warm ups such as this. I also quite enjoyed the repeated question of ‘how is everyone’? All 4,873 of you! I wanted to try and tell him that I actually felt a bit queasy but it seemed he did not actually want any answers let alone moans and gripes so we all just said we felt like heroes.
I expected to get round in about 45 minutes today so placed myself in front of the 45 pacer and when the gun went I wearily shuffled to the first K marker. I have not done any training between races at the weekend being either duathlon or triathlon qualifiers or competitions which have all gone according to plan. The next two K were also hard work and the 45 pacer went past at 3K. I got water at the first station also at 3k and managed to revive a bit and as we approached the city centre and heard the support it gave a useful spur. The temperature rose to I guess about 24 degrees although through to streets there was some welcome shade. The large number of runners meant that there were plenty people sharing the experience and despite feeling rough and working hard to maintain an even moderate pace I was actually glad to be getting the miles in.
The race was won by Jamie Rutherford of Liverpool RC in 32.49 (the heat must have impacted on what is a relatively flat 10K). First lady in 28th place was Julie Briscoe of Wakefield Harriers in 35.55. Despite the below par state I was 473rd in 46.03 and 7/145 in the age group which although OK does not merit hero status.
Next Saturday is the European sprint triathlon championships in Glasgow which I hope goes better. If it is on the telly will I then be a ‘celebrity’?