It looks like you're new here. Sign in or register to get started.
Ugh, it's that time of year when Datchet start getting super-excited about XC. I think it makes folks feel like proper runners or something. I think that's why folks also go to the track on a Monday when they should be recovering from hard efforts at the weekend.
I'll admit that I'm almost too ashamed to post my crap on here after those Euros performances. That was proper running chaps. In awe....
Reg - did you say that Windsor is a club champs event for your lot? Do you have a team strong enough to take home the team prize? We're struggling this year, even I might have to score.
So my promised read back and response to what other people have been up to never came to pass.
However, a belated happy birthday to PMJ, and well done to everyone else on your various racing. SG's Gosport jaunts sounded fun, might show up to one next year.
Dean, your silver medal was cracking in the circumstances. I wasn't aware of your illness when I saw you in the heats on the Saturday (in fact you shook my hand you bastard, whilst recounting another time when someone ill had shaken your hand pre-race), but your kick in those heats certainly didn't resemble what I had seen you do in videos of previous such races. I put it down to you being confident it was enough to qualify (which it certainly was). I've raced against Mark S before, as he's in my XC league - in fact I think I first encountered him when he was part of my pack at the Wokingham Half when I first broke 75 in 2013 - and don't remember a ferocious kick, but then maybe we never finished close enough for me to experience it. Certainly his 800 capabilities indicate some speed. You had a huge amount to contend with in the circumstances and should be really pleased with world silver.
Simon, you were in the position I find myself in every championship race of any kind - knowing there are better kickers in the race and at the same time not quite trusting yourself to go out and run the legs off them. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and who knows whether blasting it could have snuck you a medal, or could have resulted in you finishing way down the field. Still, once again, let's remember that this is 6th in the world championships, so a great performance nevertheless.
Oh yes, and welcome to all the new people. Keep posting! I noticed a few saying they're not fast enough to regularly post. Nonsense! There are no qualifying times to this thread - just a relatively serious approach to training, and/or a relatively non-serious approach to pisstaking.
So, race report, the Southern Road Relays. Always one of my favourite events of the year. I've been on a mission to one day put together a team strong enough to get top 25 and Nationals qualification. That's not easy, as SG alludes, the quality is spread among more teams, so you get B teams like AFD or Tonbridge consisting of bloody excellent runners as well as all the A teams. Our men's team is now arguably the best it's ever been, and for once I managed to put together an A team featuring pretty much all of our strongest runners plus a B team with some pretty handy guys in it as well. We had a vets team, but I'd prioritised qualification for the seniors rather than a vets medal this year, so that meant our fastest two V40s running for the seniors with one of them (me) then doing an additional leg on tired legs for the V40s.
However, since coming back from Malaga, I've been suffering with a heavy cold, which meant no running Thursday or Friday and feeling distinctly dodgy. Had it not been a team thing, I wouldn't have raced, but I still felt like I could do a job.
Text message 2 hours before the start also informed me one of our fastest runners had pulled out. Some last minute shuffling and I'm glad that I brought a B team with some good runners in it. Another V40 steps up to run an additional leg.
Placed myself on leg 1 for the seniors, to give me some time to recover before running leg 4 for the vets. The start is an utter mess. There are still changeovers taking place for the women's race which means they wait for a gap, then bring everyone through a metre-wide gap onto the track and then start the race. But the race starts before half the field have even filed through this gap in the barriers (including me) which means people are all over the place, going over hurdles, bashing barriers out of the way etc to get started. All this chaos means I am denied what I hoped would be the hilarious spectacle of our B team Leg 1 runner, a notoriously suicidal starter, mixing it at the front with some of the best runners in the country for 200 metres - unfortunately he's still behind the barriers.
I'm way back in the field now, but I have someone I can see some way ahead to chase. It's Simon Coombes! I hurry to get up to him. It takes me about a kilometre to be behind him, and then I sit there and hang on, without making my presence felt. The uphill is where I truly feel the effects of the illness, usually I pass people on the uphills, but my lungs are bursting and I lose places. Downhill feels much better. Lap 1 passes in a flash, and would hope my strength would pay off on lap 2, but I can't make the kind of headway I would expect. Get past Simon, but some of the people around are people I would expect to be ahead of. Manage to take a place in a sprint finish for 19:06, 55th on my leg. Feel bloody awful. However, looking at the times afterwards, I'm quite pleased, as I knew I was well off-colour and feared it might be considerably worse. I reckon I was probably 30 seconds down on what might be considered 'par', so still an OK run in the circumstances and definitely won't be the slowest on the team.
40 minutes of walking and jogging to keep moving, then it's my second leg for the vets. We're well out of medal contention, so it's low pressure. I start slow and work my way into it. First lap, Leg 4 runners on their second lap are screaming past, but I try not to be put off. I increase the pace on lap 2, and this stops happening, and end up with an OK-ish 20:38. Definitely have had enough by the time I finish that one.
In terms of the senior team result, our Leg 2 runner had an absolute stormer, taking a massive 25 places back and running 18:28. He's run fast times in the past, but surprised himself and everyone else with that. We are 32nd after leg 3, but I know the tendency of other teams to front-load their talent will see us rise. Leg 4 is our top man, but he ran Berlin last week. He still manages 18:32. Young people eh. This sees us into 26th as far as we can count, the first time in the race we are in qualification contention. Leg 5 takes another position and we're in 25th, but despite leg 6 (promoted from the Bs) having a storming run in 19:36, we're back in 26th by the end of the race.
There then follows confusion. My clubmate assures me that C teams can't qualify for the Nationals, and Tonbridge C were ahead. But I have not seen anything like that written down.
Then the official results come out and we are 25th! Yes! South London Harriers seem to have been DQed. Looking at the results, I suspect someone forgot to wear a chip. Time looks legit though, so there may be a case for a reinstatement.
Shortly after, the e-mail comes out and clarifies that the top 25 A teams qualify, all B teams in the top 25 as well, but no C teams. Therefore the ifs and buts are no longer relevant, and we, as 20th A team, are in!
Even if my own performance was (understandably) not great, I am delighted with this. Our club has never qualified for the nationals before. Whilst we had a decent men's team back in the 90s, when I joined in 2011 it was pretty rare that anyone broke 35 minutes for 10K. When people got faster, they often moved to the local AC. The focus very much seemed to be on inclusivity and not on the top end. I, and others, have worked quite hard to change that perception and make the club an option for faster people to be part of, and to get those faster people to turn out for events like this, and finally it seems to be paying off.
On that last note, SG, I note Rob's comments regarding Datchet being 'shown up', but it doesn't seem a reason not to take part. We spent a long time finishing in the 50s and 60s, but we got there. If a fast runner wants to join you, the fact you take part in events like this may make a difference. I know at least one of our runners yesterday would be unlikely to have joined first claim without the carrot of a decent relay team.
Anyway, after all that, I have Chester marathon the weekend of the nationals and can't make it.
with your ability to soak up miles with ease SG you should really pish about with a marathon yourself at some point before you are too decrepit. I think you might find the whole process of planning the prep and executing the race quite addictive. Seriously, I can really see it suiting you.
Great performance there by Reading Dachs. And great performance by yourself - getting several groups of blokes in one place to represent is a feat in itself, to run well and to qualify is something else.
Wool said:Reg - did you say that Windsor is a club champs event for your lot? Do you have a team strong enough to take home the team prize? We're struggling this year, even I might have to score.
Dachs said:Dean, I wasn't aware of your illness when I saw you in the heats on the Saturday (in fact you shook my hand you bastard)
Dean, I wasn't aware of your illness when I saw you in the heats on the Saturday (in fact you shook my hand you bastard)
Dachs said:.However, since coming back from Malaga, I've been suffering with a heavy cold,
However, since coming back from Malaga, I've been suffering with a heavy cold,