Some how I have missed this race the last 3 years. The race starts out in front of Frontier Field were the Rochester Red Wings (the Minnesota Twins AAA affiliate play) and finishes with a lap around the warning track ending at home plate. It has traditionally been one of the more competitive 5k’s in town with the winning time generally in the mid 14’s and a steady stream of runners from 16:00 up. This year the field was a bit thin, and so was the prize pot. The cash awards had been cut from top 5 to top 3 and as Jeff and I looked around at the start we thought we each might have a shot at some of that money.
I was uncertain how I would run. I had a cold (I still have one as I am writing this) but I had also had some really good workouts since the disaster of the McMullen Mile. The cold was mostly above the shoulders so I thought I had a shot at running a good race on this flat course. I was going with the same plan I used at the corporate Challenge, get out with the leaders and hold on.
Jeff got out to the early lead with, Mark Andrews, Patrick Geoglegan, and I right behind him. We stayed in a tight pack for most of the first mile, but I was already struggling to breath just a few minutes into the race. Just before the 1 mile mark as we rounded a corner Mark and Patrick broke away leaving Jeff and I to flounder alone into a stiff head wind. At the 1 mile mark Jeff was a few seconds ahead of me in about 5 flat.
Things fell apart for me quickly after the 1 mile. I let Jeff open up a gap and I just couldn’t bring myself to work on closing it. I ran mile 2 in 5:36, the slowest split in a 5k in the last several years, only to top that with a 5:42 3rd mile.
Over the next 2 miles Jeff remained about 15 seconds ahead of me and the chase pack about 15 seconds behind. I was running in limbo, instead of racing I was just running to be done with the race. I’m going to chalk up this total lack of motivation to being sick.
Somehow I did not lose any placement during this crawl to the finish, and I would like to think if someone had come up and challenged me I could have rallied for a finishing kick. I finished in 4th place with a time fo 16:53. This was good enough for an age group win and 12 points in the Rochester Runner of the Year Series. Full Results Here.
There was also a number of kids races which Hazel was very excited to race in. We have been going to the track lately so she could race and she was talking about running her race all morning. She had on her racing socks, racing sneakes, and racing hair tie (although she ripped off her racing bib.) A feature of the 5 and under kids race was running with “Spikes” the Red Wings mascot, this I’m sure was meant to be exciting for the children, but it turns out Hazel is absolutely terrifed of the giant red birds. She refused to go any where near Spikes, which was a problem as he was starting in the middle of the pack of kids running the 50 yard dash. Hazel would not let go of me anytime the bird came within 50 feet of her. The experience was so tramatic that when she woke up this morning the first thing she said to me was “where is bird? I’m scared of the bird!” We clearly will not be going to Disney Land anytime soon.