2:59 pacer dropout

I felt like a massive kick in the nuts when the pacer I was following dropped out after about 19 miles.  I managed to squeak in under 3 hours, but the mental effort of working out what pace I needed over the final few miles was almost too much.  Anyone know what happened to him?

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Comments

  • GerardMGerardM ✭✭✭

    Yes, apparently he took a fall at that point and took the decision to not carry on as he would not make the target time. Well done on your sub 3!

  • Ahhh my family said they saw a sub 3 pacer looking recked! he was still running but had removed his flag. They said he was still running!

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    It's Dan A from the sub-3 thread. Had a fall as has been stated. He couldnt maintain pace following that so decided to stop rather than folk following him and coming in at 3'03 or whatever. He's a 2'45 runner too so fall aside he'd have been completely fine!

    I think another of the sub-3 pacers did finish (in 2'59'xx) but depended on which start you were on, chip/gun time etc.So wise to do your own thing. And well done on keeping it together to get your time - great stuff!

  • FreemersFreemers ✭✭✭

    Some of the pacers I think went off way too quick, and I don't know how many were successful in the end. Really alarming was the sub 3.30 pacer off the red start - I could see him / her on the other side of the road around the 5k marks as the red merges with the blue/green - he/she must have gone through 5k in around 22.30 on the clock, so probably sub 22 on chip time. That's 3 minutes faster than a 3.30 marathon pace which is just suicidal so early in the race. I don't remember passing him/her later on so assume they finished before me (3.16) or not at all. 

    I was running around 3.15 pace until about 20 miles and didn't see a 3.15 pacer at all except one near the start who was a little ahead of me. I passed one of them on Bird Cage Walk who would have come in a minute maybe after me, judging from his pace at that point.  No idea whether the others were ahead or behind me, but given my pacing I'm surprised I didn't see them at some stage.

    Shame about the sub 3 pacer taking a fall....but I guess you have to be in overall control of your own pace as they can never be a guarantee.  SD - great to get the sub 3!

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    To be fair to Dan his pacing was exemplary. I didn't run this year so was at home tracking folk. Dan was one I was following. When he dropped out I think it was predicitng him a 2'59'4x finish time and his 5k splits up to that point had been very very consistent. Hence why Simon could keep the pace and bag his sub-3 I guess!

  • FreemersFreemers ✭✭✭

    LS21 - that is definitely very good pacing...perfect in fact. Maybe he should do the 3.30 next year -  I really hope no one wanting that time on the red start went with the pacer - I couldn't believe it when I saw the flag up ahead of me at 5k.

  • Freemers wrote (see)

    Some of the pacers I think went off way too quick, and I don't know how many were successful in the end. Really alarming was the sub 3.30 pacer off the red start - I could see him / her on the other side of the road around the 5k marks as the red merges with the blue/green - he/she must have gone through 5k in around 22.30 on the clock, so probably sub 22 on chip time. That's 3 minutes faster than a 3.30 marathon pace which is just suicidal so early in the race. I don't remember passing him/her later on so assume they finished before me (3.16) or not at all. 

     


    People get very confused because pacers go from all 3 starts, and all cross the line at very different times. You went from a different start, so impossible to accurately comment on speed of pacer. I have just checked the red-3.30 pacers splits and he went through the 5k mark at 24:56.

    It can get quite confusing. eg, I was taking 3:56 from red, and passed the blue 4:30 after 6 miles and blue 4:15 some time after that too.

     

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    Oh and for the opening poster - Dan is the bloke behind the Xempo stuff (the colour-coded tops based on your Mara times). So if you ran with him for 19 miles you could always celebrate/say 'thanks' at the same time by getting one of those lovely red 'Sub-3' Mara tops that he flogs.

    I'm not his agent by the way!! Just a friend - but he's a top bloke and did a great job yesterday (falling over aside that is....) Not bad though I suppose, after a full week working at the Expo as well.

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    It must be really hard for them to get going at the start if you are right in the middle of the pack. Then to have to speed up to get back on track. I have a lot of respect for them. Not sure I would want that responsibility. .
  •  I have just checked the red-3.30 pacers splits and he went through the 5k mark at 24:56.

    ..where did you get this info from?

    BTW a 3:30 pacer went past me early on and I thought he was ahead of schedule (since I was on for 3:30 myself and ahead of schedule at that moment).. but over the next few miles we seemed to sync quite nicely and I went past him in the final quarter to finish in 3:28

     

     

     

  • You have to be able to pace yourself - as Simon found, things happen!

    I would never rely on a pacer - I might run with one (I haven't done so so far), but I'd be keeping a close eye on the pace for myself, too.

  • apologies for quoted and original text being wrong way round in above post

  • from his runners number (and the results page), which I won't publish as not sure he is a) a member of this forum or b) whether he wants his name effecively plastered over the internet!

  • Millsy1977 wrote (see)
    It must be really hard for them to get going at the start if you are right in the middle of the pack. Then to have to speed up to get back on track. I have a lot of respect for them. Not sure I would want that responsibility. .

     

    It is a lot of fun, and 99% of people are very appreciative,  but it is very hard work given how busy VLM is / lots of congestion and can get a bit stressful! (Especially when you turn an ankle on a bottle. Not amused...!)

     

  • ok.. where's the results page? the link I have only has results up to 2012

  • ok, ignore above post, thanks anyway

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    I stepped on a bottle too. Was very lucky not to do any damage.
  • thanks BR, when I looked in the obvious place, it was there image

  • Dan ADan A ✭✭✭

    Hi guys,

    Yes, I was one of the three 2.59 pacers and indeed I did have to drop out between 19 & 20 miles.  I went through each mile previously on target for sub 3 (halfway 1.29.40 on the clock and 1.29.20 on my watch).

    Unfortunately got an accidental trip from behind at 19.5 which turned my ankle and I had to stop for a bit.  tbh I was slipping a few secs per km and realised that I wouldn't be able to catch up with the other pacer, and didn't want to carry on to a 3.02/3.03 time with the 2.59 flag on me.  Jogged on to the next DLR and stepped off the course.

    Apologies if I let anyone down or if anyone was relying on me.  Hope you were able to latch onto the other guy and make it home (he finished in 2.59).  We are all volunteers and don't get paid by RW for doing it.

  • Well done Dan. I paced the 4.30 group from the red start yesterday - my first time as a pacer and I can attest it is a challenging task, especially given the amount of congestion on the course. We came in at 4.28.30. My fellow pacer also had to drop out around mile 19 - I believe he was quite ill, maybe heat exhaustion but have been told he is now fine. He did a great job getting people to that point totally on pace and hopefully, anyone who was with him was able to join me.. But as Dan says, you can't 100% rely on a pacer and need to take responsibility for your own pacing too - we are only human and do this as volunteers.

    Hope everyone feeling proud and not too sore today!

     

  • FreemersFreemers ✭✭✭
    Bartholomew Roberts wrote (see)
    Freemers wrote (see)

    Some of the pacers I think went off way too quick, and I don't know how many were successful in the end. Really alarming was the sub 3.30 pacer off the red start - I could see him / her on the other side of the road around the 5k marks as the red merges with the blue/green - he/she must have gone through 5k in around 22.30 on the clock, so probably sub 22 on chip time. That's 3 minutes faster than a 3.30 marathon pace which is just suicidal so early in the race. I don't remember passing him/her later on so assume they finished before me (3.16) or not at all. 

     


    People get very confused because pacers go from all 3 starts, and all cross the line at very different times. You went from a different start, so impossible to accurately comment on speed of pacer. I have just checked the red-3.30 pacers splits and he went through the 5k mark at 24:56.

    It can get quite confusing. eg, I was taking 3:56 from red, and passed the blue 4:30 after 6 miles and blue 4:15 some time after that too.

     

    Goodness knows who I saw wearing a 3.30 flag at 5k then...I was sure it must have been on the red side of the road...3.15 would have made a lot more sense but I could have sworn it was 3.30. Oh well, maybe I was seeing things already...I know my mind was playing tricks with me later on! Anyway, apologies if I got it all wrong. As others have said it must be a tough job as a pacer, not one I would do.

    BTW Bartholmew / Sam / Dan - how much do those flag and backpack contraptions weigh?

     

  • Well done to the pacers and sorry to hear of your fall Dan and the other pacer being sick. They are all runners and accidents and sickness and bad run days must also affect pacers.

    I followed a pacer for the first time at Silverstone and he must have been slightly quicker as I lost him at 9 then paced myself and still came in under target.

    So he got me to 9 when I realised he was a bit quicker I adjusted.

    I can't imagine the pressure to get peeps round for a sub 3!

    I was supporting yesterday and there were big gaps between pacers on the same time but I put that down to the start times and pens.

  • LS21LS21 ✭✭✭

    Re the gaps - it's an interesting one re starting position etc. I know Dan was aiming for a 2'59'xx based on GUN time - makes sense as a lot of the sub-3 aspirants would have been near the front anyway. But the other pacers don't have that option - I guess they've got to do it to watch time, which makes it even more imperative that you can manage your own race.

    I imagine someone trying to break 4 hours for example, would have been gutted to cross the line with the pacer but they'd crossed the starting mat a minute so before them - so pacer runs 3'59'xx offical chip time but the other runner does 4'00'xx! So yes, even if a pacer does the oerfect job you've still got to take control of your own race.

  • Dan ADan A ✭✭✭

    Freemers - the whole caboodle weighs about 2kg.  Not a major handicap but you wouldn't go for a PB in it!  Bit awkward when the wind catches it and knocks you off balance a little.

    LS21 is right - easier for the sub 3 pacer who goes off in pen 1 and crosses the line in about 30 secs, but more difficult for the slower times when there can be several minutes between the times that the pacers cross the line off different starts.  London is unique in having multiple starts - perhaps I'll mention it to RW to see if they can colour the flags accordingly in future.

  • StrayceltStraycelt ✭✭✭

    Group 8 on the red start met the merge and there was no one to merge with. Red start is the largest and slowest to cross the line and almost impossible this year to guage against Blue or Green. Paced quite a few halves and the groups have always been appreciative and always been just a few seconds under the time. I dropped out of pacing in 2010 due to injury and was subsequently out of distance running for almost two years. Trust me, the pacers want to do a good job for you and are gutted if they either miss the time or have to drop out.
    As has been noted above, the pacers are their to help and it is your race to manage as you see fit. Congrats to all who got what they wanted from the day and roll on next year

  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭

    Whilst pacers are certainly not robots (and shouldn't therefore be relied upon 100%), I've shared a pacing job with Dan and he's a metronome!  image  Sorry to hear about your fall Dan but looks like you were doing a fine job up to that point.  I'm definitely inspired to pace a full marathon at some time or other.  Probably not VLM'14 cos I'm planning on being too busy getting pissed up in Vegas.  image

  • I was one of the 4.58 pacers from the blue start and it too us 16m40s to cross the line  (last year we were on Red pacing 4.48 and it took 22+ mins to cross).  The blue start is definitely smoother and quicker, we had no congestion at all until a few minor points on the course later.  Mark and I who were pacing together tried not to weave through runners but when you are faced with a line of three people walking (and in some cases texting!) then a little weaving is needed.

    Our 5km splits weren't too bad.  We did 2.28.25 first half and 2.29.51 second half so a 1.26 positive split - slightly more than we would have liked but a 4.58.16 final time was only 16 seconds outside of the target.

    As we went through the post finish area, we had a number of people tell us that they had achieved their sub 5 hour aim which was great to hear and very rewarding.  Is running as a pacer hard work.  Oh yes!  Is it great fun?  Oh yes!  Roll on the next time.

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