Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Doggy 5k race

Doggy 5k

I haven’t raced since the USATF NE 5k championship back on September 30. For me 7 weeks without a race is a lifetime!  My hamstring has finally healed enough that I felt it would be safe to race.  I tested it out with a quick lunch run early in the week and a short speed workout on Thursday.  I picked the “Doggy 5k” in Boston as the race to do mostly because Eric Morse and Murdoch were doing it, but also hoping it would be a low key reentry into racing.

I did an easy 4 miles in the morning then met up with Eric and Murdoch and we carpooled into Boston.  The location (Pleasure Bay) turned out to be quite nice.  There was plenty of parking and more than enough bathrooms (two key issues for me!).  I headed out on the course alone, Eric and Murdoch don’t warm-up which makes the speed they can both race all the more impressive.  The course was essentially dead flat with just one bump in the first ½ mile of the race.  The temperature was around 50 and there was a little breeze, it looked to be a fine day to race.  I did another mile with some strides and headed to the line.

More than half of the field of 330 runners were runners with dogs.  There were a couple of guys who looked pretty good and although I didn’t recognize him at the time Robert Cipriano was running.  Cipriano is one of the top 50+ runners in New England.  Amidst a lot of howling we were off, and Cipriano and his dog went flying!  They ran at an all out sprint for the first ¼ mile and Eric and Murdoch were not too far behind.  I tucked in with three dog-less guys and tried to stay in control.  At about ¾ of a mile Cipriano stopped and Eric moved into the lead and soon after I moved around the guys I was with and hit the mile (short) in second place. 

I slowly reeled in Eric and caught him around 1.5 miles, the pace felt very fast to me and I just worked to stay with those two from that point on.  Soon we could hear the other two guys catching back up and right at two mile (10:46) we were a group of four.  One of the guys made a big move and gapped us.  I stuck with Eric and the other guy for as long as I could.  With about ½ mile to go Eric pulled away and took the other guy with him.  I had no kick left (I was kicking from the start) and just tried to minimize the damage.  Eric closed on the winner finishing in 16:46 which was a full 30 seconds faster than he’d run on the same course last year.  I was pleased with the effort and the result, fourth place in 16:53.

I ran the scenic course again for a warm-down and then we hung out with about 100 dogs waiting for awards (Eric won a pair of gloves).  This was one of the rare times I enjoyed racing inside of route 128.

1 Paul Hand                    M20-29              16:36
2 Eric Morse                   M40-49              16:46    1st Dog
3 Mike Slowik                 M30-39              16:47
4 Dave Dunham              M40-49              16:53
5 Robert Cipriano           M50-59              17:50    2nd Dog
6 John O’Laughlin           M30-39              17:53
7 Becky Hutchinson         F                       18:41    3rd Dog
8 Sean Quinn                 M00-19              19:20
9 Tony Cordani              M                       19:52    4th Dog
10 Ben Zavadoski           M                       20:33    5th Dog

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